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Fluorine-Based Toxins Accumulate In The Body & Cause Multiple Health Problems

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When you bake muffins in a non-stick tin, do you think about how the non-stick coating is going to affect your health? There has been enough publicity around damaged Teflon that some reading this will likely think about the harm that can come from chipped non-stick coating. After all, who wants to eat that stuff? But I still doubt that most people think about the health consequences of the vapors that are being emitted from the heated non-stick pan or the chemicals that are being leached into their muffins while they bake them.

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Do you think about the vapors coming up from carpet-covered in-floor heating? Do you think about the health consequences of the particularly slippery dental floss that has become so popular? Do you think about how non-clump kitty litter may affect the health of your children? Do you think about how water-repellant packaging chemicals seep into the food they cover?

Most people don’t think about those things. Consumer products with non-stick coatings are such a pervasive part of life that they’re rarely thought about at all. Most people assume that those products are safe and that the Environmental Protection Agency (E.P.A.) and other regulatory agencies wouldn’t let people use them if they were dangerous.

Unfortunately, there is increasing evidence that the chemicals used to make non-stick consumer products, chemicals such as perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA, a.k.a. C8), are toxic and that they’re related (causally, but that’s difficult to prove) to many diseases. Even more worrisome is the fact that organofluorine compounds like PFOA bioaccumulate — meaning that they are not excreted from the body. Rather, they accumulate in the body with each exposure, and the risk of suffering from ill-health because of them increases as the toxic load on the body increases. Additionally, man-made organofluorine compounds accumulate in the environment and the food-chain. Creatures who are high on the food chain, like humans, get exposed to these chemical compounds that have concentrated our food. We’re also affected by them when they’re in the water that we drink and the air that we breathe.

Whether you think about it or not, you have PFOA and other organofluorine compounds in your blood. Since they started being produced in the 1950s, PFOAs and other organofluorine compounds, have become so pervasive that every person, and every living creature tested, has organofluorines in his or her body (1).

PFOAs, and other organoflurine compounds, are toxic to living creatures. In animal studies, PFOAs have “been found to cause liver toxicity, disruption of lipid metabolism and the immune and endocrine systems, adverse neurobehavioral effects, neonatal toxicity and death, and tumors in multiple organ systems” (2), as well as “cancerous testicular, pancreatic and liver tumors” (3). In humans, elevated levels of PFOAs in the blood have been linked to “testicular cancer, liver cancer, thyroid disease, ulcerative colitis, high cholesterol and pregnancy-induced hypertension” (3), as well as seizures, kidney failure, miscarriage and birth defects (4). DNA damage has been linked to organofluorine compounds (3). The toxicity of organofluorine compounds is widely spread across many organ systems, and the diseases that are related to them are multi-symptom, chronic diseases.

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In addition to being found in thousands of household products like carpeting, non-stick pans, waterproof clothes, dental floss, kitty litter and cosmetics (4), organofluorine compounds are also found in “aerosol propellants, surfactants, refrigerants, plastics, anesthetics, pesticides, plant growth regulators, medicines, adhesives, fire retardants, and even blood substitutes” (5). These products are used daily by millions of people, most of whom aren’t aware that they’re exposing themselves to toxins.

Organofluorine compounds are particularly dangerous because they essentially never biodegrade, and accumulate in the bodies of living beings while moving through the food-chain (6). Organofluorines have been “detected everywhere—produce and beef in American grocery stores, polar bears in the Arctic, children in the remote Faeroe Islands. One analysis of blood banks from around the world showed that nearly all of the blood contained C8. The lone exception was a set of archived samples that had been collected from Korean War veterans before 1952.” (4).

Organofluorine accumulation is getting worse every day, and with each generation. Organofluorine compounds have been found in umbilical cord blood (3) and breast milk, and children throughout the world are exposed to these toxic chemical compounds every day of their lives. As more and more organofluorines accumulate in each person, the toxic burden will get worse, and health consequences will become increasingly dire.

Unfortunately, “there are no reported studies of successful interventions to remove PFCs from the human body. Exposure to these commonly used non-stick and stain-resistant compounds is widespread, but excretion from the body is impaired as a result of the chemical nature of some of these agents and their propensity to be re-absorbed in the kidney and the enterohepatic [liver] circulation” (6).

With the progressive accumulation of organofluorine compounds, and as human health outcomes worsen as a result, there will undoubtedly be angry people who want to hold those responsible accountable for the creation of toxic organofluorines. As is often the case, the responsible parties are greedy corporations and failing regulatory agencies.

Corporate and Regulatory Culprits

Chemical giants DuPont and 3M are the primary producers of organofluorines that are used in household products. In their production of these goods, they have made billions in profit, while making people (and animals and plants) sick. For years DuPont covered up evidence of the toxic nature of PFOAs/C8, and rather than ceasing to use toxic organofluorine compounds when the toxicity of PFOA/C8 became clear, they switched from C8 to other organofluorine compounds which are no better for human or environmental health, but are not as well studied as C8 (4).

The regulatory agencies that are supposed to monitor the safety of chemicals in our environment, including the E.P.A., have failed to regulate organofluorine compounds in any meaningful way. “Under the 1976 Toxic Sub­stances Control Act, the E.P.A. can test chemicals only when it has been provided evidence of harm. This arrangement, which largely allows chemical companies to regulate themselves, is the reason that the E.P.A. has restricted only five chemicals, out of tens of thousands on the market, in the last 40 years” (3). Organofluorine compounds are not restricted by the E.P.A., and industrial giants/polluters like DuPont and 3M produce thousands of tons of them each year.

Details about the malfeasance of DuPont, the role of 3M, and the unwillingness and inability of the E.P.A. to protect people from the toxic, harmful effects of PFOA/C8 can be found in the brilliant exposés, “The Lawyer Who Became DuPont’s Worst Nightmare” written by Nathaniel Rich and published in The New York Times Magazine on January 6, 2016, and “Welcome to Beautiful Parkersburg, West Virginia: Home to one of the most brazen, deadly corporate gambits in U.S. history” written by Mariah Blaze and published in The Huffington Post.

Also exemplifying the problem of industry-controlled regulation of organofluorine compounds is the following from the article “Human detoxification of perfluorinated compounds”:

While there is increasing evidence suggesting health sequelae associated with PFC bioaccumulation, there are some authors and publications that have minimized concern about the accrual of these chemical agents. It is imperative to recognize that much of the research related to potentially toxic compounds, including PFCs, is undertaken or funded by the specific companies, industry-supported organizations and affiliated scientists involved with the production of the chemicals being studied. Furthermore, some toxicology journals routinely use reviewers from chemical companies to scrutinize and review manuscript submissions about the compounds their company manufactures. (6)

As long as science and journalism are corrupted by money, and regulatory agencies and politicians are controlled by corporations, citizens of the world have little protection against the toxic chemicals that can accumulate in our bodies and poison us.

Pharmaceuticals

Another source of toxic organofluorine compounds is fluorinated pharmaceuticals. Approximately 20% of the prescription drugs on the market are fluorinated (7), including fluoroquinolone antibiotics (Cipro/ciprofloxacin, Levaquin/levofloxacin, Avelox/moxifloxacin, Floxin/ofloxacin), statins (Lipitor, Crestor and others), antimalarial drugs (Lariam/mefloquine), antidepressants (SSRIs including Prozac/fluoxetine), anesthesias, and chemotherapy drugs. Depending on how the drugs are formulated, and what position fluorine is attached to carbon, they can form poisonous metabolites (8, 9)  that may be responsible for the severe side-effects associated with many of the fluorinated drugs, and they may be contributing to the multi-symptom diseases of modernity. (Many of the drugs listed have been shown to damage mitochondria (10, 11), and damaged mitochondria lead to a cycle of oxidative stress and further damage to mitochondria (12). Fluorine metabolites, such as fluoroacetate, have also been shown to damage mitochondria and increase oxidative stress (13). Many multi-symptom, chronic diseases are linked to both mitochondrial damage and oxidative stress.)

Pesticides

In an article published in 1997 (the use of fluorine-containing pesticides has escalated since), it is noted that, “Over the past 15 years, the number of fluorine-containing agricultural chemicals has grown from 4% to approximately 9% of all agrochemicals and has increased in number faster than non-fluorinated agrochemicals. These compounds are primarily used as herbicides (48%), insecticides (23%), and fungicides (18%)” (5). Exposure to these fluorinated pesticides is hazardous to the health of both agricultural workers and consumers (14).

What Can be Done?

In May, 2015, more than 200 scientists signed The Madrid Statement, “which expresses concern about the production of all fluorochemicals, or PFASs, including those that have replaced PFOA” (3). In the Statement, they suggested that the following action take place:

Scientists:

  • Assemble, in collaboration with industry and governments, a global inventory of all PFASs in use or in the environment, including precursors and degradation products, and their functionality, properties, and toxicology.
  • Develop analytical methods for the identification and quantification of additional families of PFASs, including fluorinated alternatives.
  • Continue monitoring for legacy PFASs in different matrices and for environmental reservoirs of PFASs.
  • Continue investigating the mechanisms of toxicity and exposure (e.g., sources, fate, transport, and bioaccumulation of PFASs), and improve methods for testing the safety of alternatives.
  • Bring research results to the attention of policymakers, industry, the media, and the public.

Governments:

  • Enact legislation to require only essential uses of PFASs, and enforce labeling to indicate uses.
  • Require manufacturers of PFASs to conduct more extensive toxicological testing, make chemical structures public, provide validated analytical methods for detection of PFASs, and assume extended producer responsibility and implement safe disposal of products and stockpiles containing PFASs.
  • Work with industry to develop public registries of products containing PFASs.
  • Make public annual statistical data on production, imports, and exports of PFASs.
  • Whenever possible, avoid products containing, or manufactured using, PFASs in government procurement.
  • In collaboration with industry, ensure that an infrastructure is in place to safely transport, dispose of, and destroy PFASs and PFAS-containing products, and enforce these measures.

Chemical manufacturers:

  • Make data on PFASs publicly available, including chemical structures, properties, and toxicology.
  • Provide scientists with standard samples of PFASs, including precursors and degradation products, to enable environmental monitoring of PFASs.
  • Work with scientists and governments to develop safe disposal methods for PFASs.
  • Provide the supply chain with documentation on PFAS content and safe disposal guidelines.
  • Develop nonfluorinated alternatives that are neither persistent nor toxic.

Product manufacturers:

  • Stop using PFASs where they are not essential or when safer alternatives exist.
  • Develop inexpensive and sensitive PFAS quantification methods for compliance testing.
  • Label products containing PFASs, including chemical identity and safe disposal guidelines.
  • Invest in the development and use of nonfluorinated alternatives.

Purchasing organizations, retailers, and individual consumers:

  • Whenever possible, avoid products containing, or manufactured using, PFASs. These include many products that are stain-resistant, waterproof, or nonstick.
  • Question the use of such fluorinated “performance” chemicals added to consumer products.

Indeed, all of those recommendations need to be put into action. Given the accumulation of organofluorine compounds in our bodies and environment, the time for putting these recommendations into action is now–before it’s too late.

Sources:

  1. Environmental Science & Technology, “Production of Perfluorinated Carboxylic Acids (PFCAs) from the Biotransformation of Polyfluoroalkyl Phosphate Surfactants (PAPS):  Exploring Routes of Human Contamination
  2. Environmental Health Perspectives, “The Madrid Statement on Poly- and Perfluoroalkyl Substances (PFASs)
  3. The New York Times Magazine, “The Lawyer Who Became DuPont’s Worst Nightmare
  4. The Huffington Post, “Welcome to Beautiful Parkersburg, West Virginia: Home to one of the most brazen, deadly corporate gambits in U.S. history
  5. Environmental Science & Technology, “Fluorinated Organics in the Biosphere
  6. Public Health, “Human detoxification of perfluorinated compounds
  7. Biomolecular Research & Therapeutics, “Fluorine is Flourishing in Pharmaceuticals
  8. Verdel, B.M., “Mechanism-based drug exposure classification in pharmacoepidemiological studies” Thesis Utrecht University – with ref. – with summary in Dutch, ISBN 978-90-393-5377-6 © 2010 Bertha Maria Verde
  9. British Journal of Cancer, “The anti-cancer drug 5-fluorouracil is metabolized by the isolated perfused rat liver and in rats into highly toxic fluoroacetate.
  10. Molecular Nutrition and Food Research, “Medication-induced mitochondrial damage and disease
  11. Science Translational Medicine, “Bactericidal Antibiotics Induce Mitochondrial Dysfunction and Oxidative Damage in Mammalian Cells
  12. Rejuvination Research, “Reactive oxygen species production in the mitochondrial matrix: implications for the mechanism of mitochondrial mutation accumulation.
  13. Biochemical Pharmacology, “Differential toxicity of fluoroacetate to heart, kidney and brain mitochondria of the living rat
  14. http://fluoridealert.org/researchers/pesticide/

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Long-Term Consequences of Mumps Vaccination: Many Unanswered Questions

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This is Part II of a two-part series on mumps. Part I discussed how mumps vaccination and the flawed mumps component of Merck’s MMR vaccine are fostering dangerous mumps outbreaks in adolescents and young adults.

It has been about five decades since the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Merck’s first mumps vaccine. The company began launching combination MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccines in the 1970s. Coincidentally—or not—an infertility crisis has been brewing over roughly the same time period, with dramatic declines in sperm counts and record-lowfertility levels. However, few investigators seem interested in assessing whether mumps outbreaks in highly vaccinated populations of teens and young adults could be having long-termeffects on fertility or other health indicators.

As described in Part I, childhood MMR vaccination has been an unmitigated disaster where mumps is concerned, deferring mumps infection to older ages and leaving adolescents and young adults vulnerable to serious reproductive complications. Public health reports show that the vast majority of mumps cases and outbreaks occur in youth who have been fully vaccinatedwith the prescribed two-dose MMR series, supporting a hypothesis of “waning immunity after the second dose.” FDA and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officials even admitthat mumps outbreaks in the post-vaccination era “typically involve young adults,” and that vaccination is failing to protect those who are college-age and above.

Myopically, many vaccine experts have called for a third MMR dose—or even “booster dosing throughout adulthood”—even though the FDA’s and CDC’s own research shows that MMR boosters in college-age youth barely last one year. As alleged in whistleblower lawsuits wending their way through the courts over the past eight years, Merck presented the FDA with a “falsely inflated efficacy rate” for the MMR’s mumps component, using animal antibodies and other fraudulent tactics to fool FDA—and the public—into believing that the vaccine was effective.

When infection arises after puberty, however, mumps is no laughing matter, presenting an increased risk of complications such as hearing loss, encephalitis and inflammation of the reproductive organs.

Mumps after puberty is no laughing matter

Around the time that the first mumps vaccine came on the market, the 1967 children’s classic The Great Brain humorously depicted mumps infection in childhood as a mere nuisance. The book’s young protagonist goes out of his way to intentionally infect himself with mumps so that he can beat his two brothers to the recovery finish line—and he experiences no adverse consequences other than his siblings’ annoyance.

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When infection arises after puberty, however, mumps is no laughing matter, presenting an increased risk of complications such as hearing loss, encephalitis and inflammation of the reproductive organs. About one in three postpubertal men with mumps develops orchitis(inflammation of the testes), which can damage sperm, affect testosterone production and contribute to subfertility and infertility. During a mumps outbreak in England in the mid-2000s, mumps orchitis accounted for 42% of all hospitalized mumps cases; the researchers attributed this outcome—which was the most common reason for hospitalization—to “the high attack rates in adolescents and young adults” that occurred “despite high coverage with two-dose MMR.” An analysis of a 2006 mumps outbreak in the U.S. reported that male patients were over three times more likely than female patients to experience complications, “due primarily to orchitis.”

An estimated 5% to 10% of postpubertal women will develop oophoritis (swelling of the ovaries) following mumps infection. Oophoritis is associated with premature menopause and infertility, but mumps-related oophoritis has garnered little notice.

Mumps infections are often asymptomatic or produce nonspecific symptoms such as fever, while cases of orchitis may present with no other mumps symptoms. Nonetheless, public health officials advise clinicians that orchitis is an instant cue to test for mumps virus, and testing often reveals elevated mumps antibodies. In a case report of MMR failure, British clinicians isolated a novel genetic strain of mumps virus from the patient’s semen two weeks after the onset of orchitis and found mumps RNA in the semen 40 days later; they also noted “the appearance of anti-sperm antibodies,” with “potential long-term adverse effects on the patient’s fertility.”

In 2017, researchers who reviewed 185 studies conducted in Western nations found that sperm counts had plummeted by 50% to 60% between 1973 and 2011—an average decrease of 1.4% annually. Commenting on this work, one analyst estimated that 20% to 30% of young men in Europe and North America have sperm concentrations associated with a reduced ability to father a child. Given estimates that as much as 40% of reproductive problems have to do with the male partner, there is agreement on the importance of “finding and eliminating [the] hidden culprits in the environment” that most researchers believe are to blame.

An estimated 5% to 10% of postpubertal women will develop oophoritis (swelling of the ovaries) following mumps infection. Oophoritis is associated with premature menopause and infertility, but mumps-related oophoritis has garnered little notice.

MMR’s and MMRV’s potential to impair fertility never studied

Merck has not evaluated either of its two MMR vaccines—the MMR-II and the MMR-plus-varicella (MMRV) vaccine—for their potential to impair fertility. Whether such testing would unearth direct effects on fertility (as appears to be possible with HPV vaccination in women) is thus unknown. However, mumps vaccination undeniably increases reproductive-age individuals’ risk of mumps infection and, in the process, increases the risk of fertility-altering complications. These facts alone should be attracting far more attention.

Unfortunately, because clinicians already tend to underdiagnose mumps infection and underestimate mumps complications, it is likely that they are failing to recognize possible vaccine-induced reproductive health consequences of mumps infection in their adolescent and young adult patients. In one university outbreak, “most physicians…did not suspect mumps,” and even when they became aware of the outbreak, “diagnosing mumps was not always straightforward.” Moreover, although differentiating between vaccine strains of mumps virus and wild types could provide valuable information, few clinicians have the capacity or inclination to perform testing of this type. A Japanese study of cerebrospinal fluid and saliva from patients with mumps complications found vaccine strain in nearly all of the samples and noted the information’s importance in helping determine whether the complications were vaccine-related.

Those who have sought to understand mumps vaccines’ poor performance point to a mixture of explanatory factors. These include waning immunity, the high population density and close quarters encountered in settings such as college campuses, incomplete vaccine-induced immunity to wild virus as well as viral evolution such that “the vaccine triggers a less potent reaction against today’s mumps viruses than those of 50 years ago.” However, some also quietly admit that individuals with “mild vaccine-modified disease” could be perpetuating the chain of transmission. This latter point ought to be raising questions about the logic and wisdom of administering further rounds of MMR boosters during outbreaks while ignoring the problems created by the doses already given.

… some individuals respond poorly to mumps vaccination and vaccine-induced antibody levels correlate poorly with protection from mumps infection, irrespective of the number of additional doses of mumps-containing vaccine they receive.

Most scientists appear to be either resigned to ongoing mumps outbreaks in vaccinated populations or actually accept periodic outbreaks as the cost of doing business. Publications by FDA and CDC researchers reveal these agencies’ awareness that some individuals respond poorly to mumps vaccination and that vaccine-induced antibody levels correlate poorly with protection from mumps infection, “irrespective of the number of additional doses of mumps-containing vaccine they receive.” Considering the effects on fertility, the generally abysmal track record of mumps vaccination and Merck’s fraudulent claims about efficacy, it is hard to fathom medical and public health experts’ complacency about current mumps vaccines and vaccine policies.


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Legal Challenge Against Forced Vaccination Filed in New York City

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On April 15, 2019, a legal challenge was filed in the New York State Trial Court by Robert Krakow, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Patricia Finn against the New York City Department of Health and Human Hygiene for their forced Measles-Mumps-Rubella vaccination. The legal team asked for a temporary restraining order against the mandate that the Judge will likely review and provide an ex parte decision. Children’s Health Defense is supporting these efforts.

Last week, Children’s Health Defense reported that the NYC Commissioner of Health declared a public health emergency, ordering all people who live, work or reside in four Brooklyn zip codes to be vaccinated with the Measles-Mumps-Rubella vaccine. Non-compliance with the order is a misdemeanor subject to criminal and civil fines, including imprisonment. Only those with documented immunity, medical contraindications or infants under six months are exempt from the vaccine mandate.

READ THE PETITION
READ THE MEMORANDUM OF LAW
READ THE AFFIRMATION

Sign up for free news and updates from Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and the Children’s Health Defense. CHD is planning many strategies, including legal, in an effort to defend the health of our children and obtain justice for those already injured. Your support is essential to CHD’s successful mission.

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Magnesium Puts Psychiatric Drugs to Shame for Depression

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    This article was written by Sayer Ji, Founder of Greenmedinfo.com where this article first appeared. Posted here with permission.

  • Reflect On:

    Is the priority of our federal health regulatory agencies and pharmaceutical companies human health, or profit? If there are more effective ways to treat several illnesses, why do they never mention them?

Depression is one of the most widely diagnosed conditions of our time, with over 3 million cases in the U.S. every year, and 350 million believed affected worldwide.1 Conventional medicine considers antidepressant drugs first-line treatments, including the newly approved injected postpartum drug costing $34,000 a treatment, to the tune of a 16 billion dollars in global sales by 2023. Despite their widespread use, these drugs are fraught with a battery of serious side effects, including suicidal ideation and completion — the last two things you would hope to see in a condition that already has suicidality as a co-morbidity. For this reason alone, natural, safe, and effective alternatives are needed more than ever before.

While research into natural alternatives for depression is growing daily — GreenMedInfo.com’s Depression database contains 647 studies on over 100 natural substances that have been studied to prevent or treat depression — it is rare to find quality human clinical research on the topic published in well-respected journals. That’s why a powerful study published in PLOS One titled, “Role of magnesium supplementation in the treatment of depression: A randomized clinical trial,” is so promising. Not only is magnesium safe, affordable, and easily accessible, but according to this recent study, effective in treating mild-to moderate symptoms of depression.

While previous studies have looked at the association between magnesium and depression,2-7 this is the first placebo-controlled clinical study to evaluate whether the use of over-the-counter magnesium chloride (248 mg elemental magnesium a day for 6 weeks) improves symptoms of depression.

The study design was a follows:

“ An open-label, blocked, randomized, cross-over trial was carried out in outpatient primary care clinics on 126 adults (mean age 52; 38% male) diagnosed with and currently experiencing mild-to-moderate symptoms with Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9) scores of 5–19. The intervention was 6 weeks of active treatment (248 mg of elemental magnesium per day) compared to 6 weeks of control (no treatment). Assessments of depression symptoms were completed at bi-weekly phone calls. The primary outcome was the net difference in the change in depression symptoms from baseline to the end of each treatment period. Secondary outcomes included changes in anxiety symptoms as well as adherence to the supplement regimen, appearance of adverse effects, and intention to use magnesium supplements in the future. Between June 2015 and May 2016, 112 participants provided analyzable data.”

The study results were as follows:

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“Consumption of magnesium chloride for 6 weeks resulted in a clinically significant net improvement in PHQ-9 scores of -6.0 points (CI -7.9, -4.2; P<0.001) and net improvement in Generalized Anxiety Disorders-7 scores of -4.5 points (CI -6.6, -2.4; P<0.001). Average adherence was 83% by pill count. The supplements were well tolerated and 61% of participants reported they would use magnesium in the future. Similar effects were observed regardless of age, gender, baseline severity of depression, baseline magnesium level, or use of antidepressant treatments. Effects were observed within two weeks. Magnesium is effective for mild-to-moderate depression in adults. It works quickly and is well tolerated without the need for close monitoring for toxicity.”

 For perspective, conventional antidepressant drugs are considering to generate an “adequate or complete treatment response” with a PHQ-9 score “decrease of 5 points or more from baseline.” At this level of efficacy, their recommended action is: “Do not change treatment; conduct periodic follow-up.” The magnesium’s score of -6.0 therefore represents the height of success within conventional expectations for a complete response, which is sometimes termed “remission.” In contradistinction, conventional antidepressant drugs result in nearly half of patients discontinuing treatment during the first month, usually due to their powerful and sometimes debilitating side effects.8

To summarize the main study outcomes:

  • There was a clinically significant improvement in both Depression and Anxiety scores.
  • 61% of patients reported they would use magnesium in the future.
  • Similar effects occurred across age, gender, severity of depression, baseline magnesium levels, or use of antidepressant treatments.
  • Effects were observed within two weeks.

 The study authors concluded:

“Magnesium is effective for mild-to-moderate depression in adults. It works quickly and is well tolerated without the need for close monitoring for toxicity.”

Beyond Depression: Magnesium’s Many Health Benefits & Where To Source It

Magnesium is a central player in your body’s energy production, as its found within 300 enzymes in the human body, including within the biologically active form of ATP known as MG-ATP. In fact, there have been over 3,751 magnesium binding sites identified within human proteins, indicating that it’s central nutritional importance has been greatly underappreciated.

Research relevant to magnesium has been accumulating for the past 40 years at a steady rate of approximately 2,000 new studies a year. Our database project has indexed well over 100 health benefits of magnesium thus far.  For the sake of brevity, we will address seven key therapeutic applications for magnesium as follows:

  • Fibromyalgia: Not only is magnesium deficiency common in those diagnosed with fibromyalgia, 9,10 but relatively low doses of magnesium (50 mg), combined with malic acid in the form of magnesium malate, has been clinically demonstrated to improve pain and tenderness in those to which it was administered.11
  • Atrial Fibrillation: A number of studies now exist showing that magnesium supplementation reduce atrial fibrillation, either by itself, or in combination with conventional drug agents.12
  • Diabetes, Type 2: Magnesium deficiency is common in type 2 diabetics, at an incidence of 13.5 to 47.7% according to a 2007 study. 13 Research has also shown that type 2 diabetics with peripheral neuropathy and coronary artery disease have lower intracellular magnesium levels. 14 Oral magnesium supplementation has been shown to reduce plasma fasting glucose and raising HDL cholesterol in patients with type 2 diabetes.15 It has also been shown to improve insulin sensitivity and metabolic control in type 2 diabetic subjects.16
  • Premenstrual Syndrome: Magnesium deficiency has been observed in women affected by premenstrual syndrome.17 It is no surprise therefore  that it has been found to alleviate premenstrual symptoms of fluid retention, 18 as well as broadly reducing associated symptoms by approximately 34% in women, aged 18-45, given 250 mg tablets for a 3-month observational period.20 When combined with B6, magnesium supplementation has been found to improve anxiety-related premenstrual symptoms.19
  • Cardiovascular Disease and Mortality: Low serum magnesium concentrations predict cardiovascular and all-cause mortality.21 There are a wide range of ways that magnesium may confer its protective effects. It may act like a calcium channel blocker,22it is hypotensive,23 it is antispasmodic (which may protect against coronary artery spasm),24 and anti-thrombotic.25 Also, the heart muscle cells are exceedingly dense in mitochondria (as high as 100 times more per cell than skeletal muscle), the “powerhouses” of the cell,” which require adequate magnesium to produce ATP via the citric acid cycle.
  • Migraine Disorders: Blood magnesium levels have been found to be significantly lower in those who suffer from migraine attacks.26,27 A recent Journal of Neural Transmission article titled, “Why all migraine patients should be treated with magnesium,” pointed out that routine blood tests do not accurately convey the true body magnesium stores since less than 2% is in the measurable, extracellular space, “67% is in the bone and 31% is located intracellularly.”28The authors argued that since “routine blood tests are not indicative of magnesium status, empiric treatment with at least oral magnesium is warranted in all migraine sufferers.” Indeed, oral magnesium supplementation has been found to reduce the number of headache days in children experiencing frequent migranous headaches,29and when combined with l-carnitine, is effective at reducing migraine frequency in adults, as well.30
  • Aging: While natural aging is a healthy process, accelerated aging has been noted to be a feature of magnesium deficiency,31especially evident in the context of long space-flight missions where low magnesium levels are associated with cardiovascular aging over 10 times faster than occurs on earth.32 Magnesium supplementation has been shown to reverse age-related neuroendocrine and sleep EEG changes in humans.33 One of the possible mechanisms behind magnesium deficiency associated aging is that magnesium is needed to stabilize DNA and promotes DNA replication. It is also involved in healing up of the ends of the chromosomes after they are divided in mitosis.34

 It is quite amazing to consider the afformentioned side benefits of magnesium consumption or supplementation within the context of the well-known side effects of pharmaceutical approaches to symptom

management of disease. On average, conventional drugs have 75 side effects associated with their use, including lethal ones (albeit sometimes rare). When considering magnesium’s many side benefits

and extremely low toxicity, clearly this fundamental mineral intervention (and dietary requirement) puts pharmaceutical approaches to depression to shame.

Best Sources of Magnesium In The Diet

The best source of magnesium is from food, and one way to identify magnesium-containing foods are those which are green, i.e. chlorophyll rich. Chlorophyll, which enable plants to capture solar energy and convert it into metabolic energy, has a magnesium atom at its center. Without magnesium, in fact, plants could not utilize the sun’s light energy.

Magnesium, however, in its elemental form is colorless, and many foods that are not green contain it as well. The point is that when found complexed with food cofactors, it is absorbed and utilized more efficiently than in its elemental form, say, extracted from limestone in the form of magnesium oxide.

 The following foods contain exceptionally high amounts of magnesium. The portions described are 100 grams, or a little over three ounces.

  • Rice bran, crude (781 mg)
  • Seaweed, agar, dried (770 mg)
  • Chives, freeze-dried (640 mg)
  • Spice, coriander leaf, dried (694 mg)
  • Seeds, pumpkin, dried (535 mg)
  • Cocoa, dry powder, unsweetened (499 mg)
  • Spices, basil, dried (422 mg)
  • Seeds, flaxseed (392 mg)
  • Spices, cumin seed (366 mg)
  • Nuts, brazilnuts, dried (376 mg)
  • Parsley, freeze-dried (372 mg)
  • Seeds, sesame meal (346 mg)
  • Nut, almond butter (303 mg)
  • Nuts, cashew nuts, roasted (273 mg)
  • Soy flour, defatted (290 mg)
  • Whey, sweet, dried (176 mg)
  • Bananas, dehydrated (108 mg)
  • Millet, puffed (106 mg)
  • Shallots, freeze-dried (104 mg)
  • Leeks, freeze-dried (156 mg)
  • Fish, salmon, raw (95 mg)
  • Onions, dehydrated flakes (92 mg)
  • Kale, scotch, raw (88 mg)

 Fortunately, for those who need higher doses, or are not inclined to consume magnesium rich foods, there are supplemental forms commonly available on the market. Keep in mind, for those who wish to take advantage of the side benefit of magnesium therapy, namely, its stool softening and laxative properties, magnesium citrate or oxide will provide this additional feature.

For those looking to maximize absorption and bioavailability magnesium glycinate is ideal, as glycine is the smallest amino acid commonly found chelated to magnesium, and therefore highly absorbable.

For more information on natural solutions to resolving depression, download our free e-book on the topic “21st Century Solutions to Depression.” 

References:

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Sayer Ji is founder of Greenmedinfo.com, a reviewer at the International Journal of Human Nutrition and Functional Medicine, Co-founder and CEO of Systome Biomed, Vice Chairman of the Board of the National Health Federation, Steering Committee Member of the Global Non-GMO Foundation.


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