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Importance Of Calcium & Magnesium In Addiction Recovery

Magnesium and Calcium in drug abuse and addiction

In patients who consume excessive amounts of alcohol, various disturbances are observed, i.e., electrolyte, acid-base, protein-caloric malnutrition, and vitamin deficiency. Chronic alcohol abuse patients are malnourished not only because of a diet low in nutrients but also because alcohol impairs the absorption of essential nutrients and elements. In addition, ethanol metabolic pathways produce toxic metabolites (acetaldehyde and free radicals) that lead to cell damage as a result of oxidative stress.

When it comes to drug addiction, magnesium reduces the intensity of addiction to opiates and psychostimulants (cocaine, amphetamine, nicotine, and others). It also decreases the auto-administration of cocaine and the relapse into cocaine and amphetamine intake and reduces addiction to morphine, cocaine, and other substances. Heroin addicts, alcohol consumers, and other drug abusers have decreased magnesium-calcium levels and other elements in blood plasma compared to healthy people.

It is also considered that magnesium intake reduces the consumption of some highly addictive substances in its moderate effect of stimulating the reward system. 

Also, studies across the globe are showing that the ratio of calcium to magnesium is more important than the independent levels of each mineral, as most of us originally thought.

Importance of Calcium

The most common human and rich body mineral is calcium. About ninety-nine percent of body calcium is in the teeth and bones, and one percent in soft tissues and blood. It is one of the most essential minerals implicated in the healing and avoidance of osteoporosis.

Importance of Magnesium

Magnesium, on the other hand, is a mineral that takes part in preserving healthy bones and is the body’s fourth most copious cation, with sixty percent found in bones and forty percent spread equally among non-muscular tissue and muscle.  Together calcium and magnesium work hand in hand to give the body’s bone, teeth, and muscles what it needs to be strong.

Calcium and Magnesium Ratio

Magnesium and calcium work together, and yet they also antagonize each other. The same receptors that regulate calcium also impact magnesium. Studies have found that calcium directly or indirectly competes with magnesium for absorption and transport, especially if calcium intake is much higher than magnesium intake.

For example, if the gut has more magnesium than calcium, the magnesium will be absorbed. Still, if there is a much higher amount of calcium, the magnesium will not be absorbed. This is very important information because high-dose calcium supplementation is common, but magnesium is not so common.

Calcium and magnesium deficiency can cause health problems such as muscle cramps, insomnia, tension, aches and pains, diabetes, high blood pressure, PMS, and osteoporosis.  Magnesium is vital for the absorption of calcium and has an important role in muscle, nerve, and heart function.  Together with Vitamin C and D, they are become great aids for Calcium absorption, with studies suggesting that calcium with Vitamin D aid in preventing, slowing down, and even reversing the painful results of bone loss.

The Importance of the Calcium Magnesium Ratio

Calcium + Magnesium = Not Only Strong Bones

Many think the most important reason to obtain calcium and magnesium supplements is to create strong bones.  However, the requirement for calcium and magnesium is much more complex than that.  Sufficient intake of everyday dietary calcium is necessary to control heart rate, muscle contraction, blood clotting, and many more.  Magnesium is a vital co-factor in more than three hundred of the body’s enzymatic reactions, contributing to the production of cardiovascular purposes and energy construction and synthesis.

Calcium and magnesium work together, where magnesium augments calcium absorption and efforts with calcium to contract and relax muscles and soothe and comfort the nerves.  Jointly, they build a complicatedly connected relationship that supports the nervous system. 

The roles of these two very essential minerals of the body should not be underestimated.  Although only a small quantity of blood calcium is required in the soft tissues and the blood, lacking it would cause the heart to beat unsteadily, the muscles not to contract correctly, the blood would not clot, and the nerves would not carry messages.

Why the Provision of Calcium and Magnesium Is Imperative

The body sees the bone as an emergency source of calcium for the daily life-giving processes it undergoes; it automatically takes the calcium it needs from the bones if the body does not meet the supply it requires.  That is why the adequate provision of calcium and magnesium in the body through one’s diet is imperative to protect the bones from this destructive process.

The Best Calcium – Magnesium Ratio is 2:1

Balancing calcium – magnesium levels should start with your diet.

Good sources of calcium include green, leafy vegetables like kale or spinach, dairy products like cheese and yogurt, and seeds such as chia, sesame, and poppy seeds.

Magnesium is found in dark chocolate, avocados, nuts such as almonds, cashews, or brazil nuts, and whole grains like wheat, oats, or quinoa. Again, consuming foods high in calcium in the morning and high in magnesium at night is the easiest way to avoid the competition for the minerals in your body.

Doing your best to maintain a 2:1 ratio, consuming twice the amount of calcium to magnesium, will help your body function at its optimal level. If you think you need supplementation, ensure you are not over-supplementing one mineral over the other based on your current diet.

Consulting your doctor, nutritionist, or dietitian or considering a mineral hair analysis test is a great way to determine your current mineral levels and assess how to optimize your health.

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Published: December 20, 2022

Last Updated: December 20, 2022