Vitamin D deficiency, the cause of probably 60% of the diseases in the U.S. and the world today, is a bit more complicated than appears on the surface. Most people believe that just taking a vitamin D-3 supplement will eliminate their deficiency in two to three months by raising their D-3 levels to “normal”, and expect all of their health problems to disappear. That’s the quick fix syndrome, and I wish it were so.
You can improve the quality of your health by just taking a vitamin D supplement, but better still, by taking care to include the other missing ingredient in your diet, the mineral magnesium, you can really raise your overall health and the quality of your life. The inclusion of these magnesium laden healthy and tasty raw vegetables in your diet will result in turning a small health correction into a full blown shot-in-the-arm! This can positively impact your longevity. The supporting science is well documented. Magnesium is the key factor in converting vitamin D-3 into 1,25D₃ the only form of vitamin D the body can use. Magnesium from supplements does not work well because the body has a difficult time metabolizing minerals that are not combined with food.
As such, magnesium laden vegetables are the simplest, easiest, and most efficient way for the body to build up a sufficient store of magnesium to meet the body’s various every day needs. Having a deficiency of magnesium is not only harmful to the body, it is wasteful; your body will not be able to convert all of the vitamin D-3 you are getting, from supplements or sun, into its useable form.
Like so many North Americans:
• You are probably eating too many grains and cheese,
• You are not getting enough magnesium-rich foods.
Whole grains ARE healthy to eat, but not too much of them.
Grains, like cheese, are acid forming, especially soft cheeses.
So too are meat and fish, pasteurized fruit drinks, most processed foods, fast foods, sodas, coffee, tea, and power drinks.
Are you asking yourself “So What”? What has acidity got to do with vitamin D and magnesium? A whole lot!
Let me explain.
Think of how meat tenderizer works. You pick up a cheaper cut of beef from your local butcher. You know it’s tough, so you coat it with meat tenderizer and let it sit.
When you think it is ready, you broil it or whatever, and it is tender as can be.
What happened? The highly acidic meat tenderizer attacked the tough sinews between the cells tenderizing the beef to the extent that you can cut it with a fork.
The acid tenderizer is so effective, if you left it on the beef long enough, the beef would dissolve and disintegrate. The same would happen to your organs if the acid from acid forming foods you eat were not neutralized with the minerals magnesium, potassium or calcium, which are alkaline.
One of your body’s highest priorities is to protect your organs from destruction.
If you do not give your body enough alkaline forming foods to provide your body with sufficient neutralizing alkaline minerals, your body will strip the minerals from your bones and muscles in order to protect the organs from destruction. If the acid content of your body is overwhelming, and your body cannot supply enough minerals to neutralize the acid, your body will then encapsulate the acid molecules in fat cells and keep them encapsulated until it builds up excess alkali. Only then will your body release and neutralize the excess acid it has been storing to protect itself. One of the side effects of storing acid in fat cells usually results in weightgain or obese.
Why am I telling you this?
Because the more acid there is in your body, the more magnesium, potassium and calcium your body will need to neutralize all the acid. You need to know that your body is desperate to neutralize this acid and will take these minerals from anywhere it can get them. This action is vital to your very existence! Osteoporosis, which is so common today, is a result of your body stripping minerals from your bones creating holes in them and making them brittle. Another result could be the softening of your bones called osteomalacia which will dangerously weaken your skeletal structure. To make matters even worse, fewer minerals would be available for other vitally essential uses in your body as your body’s first priority is neutralizing its excess acid.
A prime example being the need for magnesium to convert the vitamin D-3 into the active form, (1,25D₃), which is the only form of D the body can use. You cannot make up a magnesium deficiency by taking more vitamin D-3. If the D-3 is not converted, your body cannot use it.
Here are some of the problems you may encounter if your magnesium level is low:
• Your body will have trouble converting Vitamin D into the form it can use to create its amazing benefits.
• Your body won’t be able to produce ATP (cells power engine)
• Your body will decrease expression of Vitamin D receptors which impairs receptor signaling. Poor signaling interferes with the normal workings of bodily functions.
• Your body will limit the use of what calcium and magnesium is available. Suppress the release of parathyroid hormone (PTH) and calcitonin, hormones that help regulate the metabolism of calcium and magnesium.
• Your body will compromise the activity of enzymes that regulate your membrane mineral pumps that are vital in keeping potassium inside the cell and sodium outside the cell as well as performing other functions.
• Your body needs magnesium for more than 300 enzymatic reactions.
• Your body loses much needed potassium and calcium via your urine.
That is a long list of nasty happenings, but not a complete one. These will have long term nasty effects on your health. Magnesium is an antacid. You need antacids in your body —- magnesium, potassium and calcium—-the kind that come from food, not drugs, to neutralize acid waste. The more antacids you make available in your diet the less you have to take from your body stores (bones and muscles). The purple pill, Tums, and other over-the-counter antacids are not the solution!
These are just chemicals that will neutralize the acid in your stomach, disrupt the digestive process and minimize your body’s ability to extract much needed nutrients from the food you eat. To get enough magnesium in your diet so that your vitamin D functions properly, and to facilitate all important enzymatic reactions, you must eat magnesium rich foods to balance the acid-base in your diet to reduce the loss of magnesium and other alkaline buffers in your urine.
Here’s is what I suggest:
• Eat lots of fruits and magnesium rich vegetables such as spinach, bok choy, kale, collard greens, and Swiss chard. Mix them in with your organic salad greens.
• Have at least one banana a day.
• Eat a hand full of nuts a day. Ten to twelve.
• Minimize eating cheese and especially do not eat processed cheese.
• Don’t use processed salt. Use only sea salt.
• Avoid fast foods, all processed foods, and pasteurized orange, grapefruit and other juices.
• Eliminate soda and power drinks from your diet and minimize the intake of coffee.
• Eat only lean meat and or wild fish and free range chicken.
• Eat as much organic as you can.
Your body is a highly complex marvel of functionality. It requires you to understand and provide what it needs to keep it functioning at its peak to allow you to live the vibrant healthy life that is available to you, just for the taking. Don’t be like the average Joe who knows more about, and spends more on, his car then he does his body. Take your vitamin D-3 and make sure you eat enough magnesium rich foods.
Supplements alone will not do the job. Your body works best in an alkaline state, pH 7.3, so do your best to keep it there! Increase your intake of magnesium rich vegetables.