The Cal-Mag vitamin, manufactured by Nutritional Engineering, has been formulated specially to help overcome the magnesium deficiency that can be caused by high level calcium supplementation. Because of the alarming increase of osteoporosis, many doctors, nutritionists, and supplement manufacturers are pushing high level calcium supplementation (1000 mg - 3000 mg per day), assuming that increased calcium will solve the problem. Even the anti-acid producers are getting into the calcium supplementation act. Extra calcium is being added to milk, even soft drinks and orange juice. In the midst of all this calcium furor it seems that some of the basic biochemistry of calcium metabolism and the close involvement of calcium with other nutrients such as potassium and magnesium, have been forgotten or ignored.
High levels of calcium supplementation suppress magnesium absorption. This can cause a magnesium deficiency. A magnesium deficiency results in increased production of the PTH(parathyroid hormone) which mobilizes bone calcium, transferring it from bone into soft tissues, (cells), where it does not belong in increased amounts. This continual loss can cause bone mass loss and weakening of the bone structure.
Magnesium deficiency causes a decrease in the production, by the kidneys, of dihydroxy vitamin D-3 which results in inefficient absorption of calcium by the intestines and a further loss of magnesium by the kidneys. This calcium deficiency is made up by mobilizing calcium from the bones. The abnormal levels of PTH hormone, because of magnesium deficiency, causes this calcium to end up in the soft tissues(cells) rather than being redeposited in the bone. This calcium in the cells inhibits enzyme reactions that are necessary for cellular health and suppresses the production of ATP by the mitochondria of the cells. The ATP is the energizer, the source of energy for the cell. The cell operation becomes sluggish and less efficient. This process can result in accelerated aging and premature death of cells. This increase of cellular calcium, at the expense of magnesium and potassium, is partially responsible for chemical imbalances in the cell that make us more susceptable to degenerative processes.
Natural foods (whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds) have ratios of magnesium to calcium of 2-8 parts magnesium to 1 part calcium. It would seem a more logical approach to osteoporosis would be to increase our magnesium intake, increase our exercise and change our dietary habits to minimize or exclude those items which drain our body of magnesium, calcium and potassium, such as processed foods, refined sugars, high protein intake, high phosphates and high fats. The best way to obtain magnesium, calcium and other nutrients is by eating properly. In the natural foods the Creator has balanced the nutrients for us. Supplements are helpful as insurance but should only be used to supplement.