Osteoblasts are your important bone building carpenter cells. The research shows that when they run low on magnesium they get in a bad mood and start cranking out a highly inflammatory signal (inducible nitric oxide – iNOS). This results in two adverse outcomes for bones.
First, the iNOS prevents the generation of new osteoblasts. In essence the bones are reasoning that if there is not enough magnesium then the intake of nutrients for building bone is probably lacking, so there is no need for any more carpenters. As far as bones are concerned the lack of magnesium is signaling a housing crisis and the magnesium-needing osteoblasts are headed for the unemployment line.
Second, the increase of iNOS within bone triggers excessive activation of the demo crew known as osteoclasts. The adverse inflammatory increase of osteoclast activity combined with a relative decrease of osteoblast activity is the hallmark of bone loss, eventually leading to osteoporosis.
Magnesium deficiency is common in just about anyone struggling with virtually any ongoing health issue. Magnesium is rapidly depleted by stress and lost in sweat (from exercise). It is typical in individuals who feel agitated, irritated, anxious, and/or have trouble sleeping. It isn’t the only reason for these issues but it certainly is a common finding in any of them.
In addition to a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, supplemental high quality magnesium (not magnesium oxide), ranging in daily doses from 200 mg on the low end up to 800 mg on the high end can be quite helpful in replenishing magnesium status. Remember, your bones take the brunt of all the stressors in your life. Adequate magnesium is basic for your bones and vital for many other aspects of health.
Byron J. Richards, Board Certified Clinical Nutritionist