My discovery of why our MAGNESIUM levels are a huge problem! (mine was)

1-Screen Shot 2015-01-14 at 8.02.21 PMI am blown away by the magnitude of what I have discovered just recently. And this potentially involves YOU.

I had several labs done just to keep track of how I stood in several areas. One was RBC Magnesium.  “RBC” (red blood cell) measures the intracellular levels of magnesium–supposedly a more accurate picture than a “serum” measurement of your magnesium, which only measures 1% (and sadly, most doctors only measure your serum levels). i.e. even if your serum measurement was normal, your cellular levels may NOT be.

And my result?? My RBC magnesium measured at the bottom, very bottom, of the range. I was shocked. I eat healthy, and have been giving myself liquid minerals off and on for awhile. But clearly, I have been unable to raise my magnesium level. When I tried to raise my supplementation, I’d have to runnnn to the bathroom.

So I opened a book that a good friend gave me: Transdermal Magnesium Therapy by Mark Sircus, OMD. And folks, I am blown away. Here is what I have learned, and YOU may need to as well:

Magnesium Deficiency

  • Affects at least 7 out of 10 reading this
  • Can be there even if you feel well (me); will be there if you have mal-absorption (think gluten issues)
  • Is common with diabetes, liver disease, and if you take or eat a lot of calcium
  • Is especially problematic if you drink alcohol, sodas, caffeine and excess sugar, have a stressful life, sweat a lot, or take birth control pills
  • Increases your risk of heart disease, strokes, muscles problems, cancer and many other illnesses
  • Is common in a stressful life (and especially so if you have adrenal fatigue, or you are a Type A personality)
  • Can be even worse than a lab test reveals
  • Is found in someone like me who eats right!!

How a deficiency of magnesium affects you

  • Can cause heart disease (and exacerbates my Mitral Valve Prolapse), plus strokes
  • Promotes tooth decay, muscle cramping (me for over a decade)
  • Lowers your immune system strength, energy levels, metabolism (I have to eat like a mouse, even on desiccated thyroid)
  • Increases blood pressure (mine has risen at the same time I’ve noticed leg cramps…hmmmm)
  • Decreases your body’s ability to use Vit. C and E
  • Lowers the production, function and transport of insulin
  • Causes an increase of toxins and acid in your body (think cigarettes, radiation, toxins in food/water/air)
  • Makes you susceptible to host of diseases and conditions
  • Can cause tinnitus in the ears

Why you need higher levels of magnesium

  • Helps the metabolism of carbs, fats and amino acids and influences 325 enzymes
  • Counteracts and regulates the influence of calcium, which can harm you if too much
  • Is required for the body to produce and store energy (just like desiccated thyroid)
  • Calms the brain
  • Removes toxins along with Vit. C
  • Increases the efficiency of white blood cells (your immune system)
  • Helps prevent cancer and slows down the course of cancer (along with zinc and selenium!)
  • Can raise testosterone levels in men (and with zinc)
  • Relieves pain! (important news for those with arthritis or other pain issues)
  • Does the opposite of what is listed above about how deficiencies affect you
  • Is nearly miraculous for the depth and scope of its application
  • Saves billions of dollars as well as millions of lives

How will I treat my own low magnesium?? After confirming my situation via the RBC Magnesium lab test (very important to first find out. My doctor did it through Quest Labs),  I know I can’t improve it with oral supplements. The amount I would need simply causes diarrhea.

Instead, I am following the information I’ve read in this book and heard about from others: the use of “magnesium oil”, which is magnesium chloride, and I’ll be rubbing it on my skin and following the information on how much. That is apparently the best way to give myself enough magnesium. I have personally ordered the Ancient Minerals brand–found it on the net. I may also use magnesium salts in water, soaking my feet in it. I plan on making sure my husband is tested, as I strongly suspect he is low as a diabetic with digestive issues. (Update: I eventually stopped liking the stinging feeling that the magnesium oil did to my skin, and I switched to Natural Calm powder in my morning drink!)

Yes, I feel really good with my natural desiccated thyroid in the treatment of my hypothyroid. But I want to be healthy in all areas, and this is one that looks important to me. (Thanks Stephanie)

97 Responses to “My discovery of why our MAGNESIUM levels are a huge problem! (mine was)”

  1. Sway Johnson

    I have been on the magnesium journey myself. My doctor wouldn’t order it so I used an online lab testing company. My naturopath told me that although I scored on the low end of normal, I should have a reading of 6. So I am taking supplements now. They are slow release so that helps a lot to avoid diarrhea symptoms.

    • Bluestone

      Sway Johnson, et al: Can you please share the name / brand and dose of the slow release magnesium you are taking? You wrote a positive remark on this last April 2013 – How is it working now, 8 months later? Thanks.

      • Linda Becker

        Jigsaw makes a great time release product.

      • Epi

        You only need a spray bottle of what’s commonly referred to as ‘magnesium oil’. It’s not expensive (put it this way, if it’s horribly expensive, pass it by – you’re just paying for someone’s wealthy lifestyle and their product is no better than any others on the market).

        Magnesium oil is – in a nutshell – simply water that’s been taken from deep within various oceans.

        Of course, it’s not really an oil at all, but it has a salt-water-and-oily feel to it.

        Spray all over the body and either rinse off after half an hour, or leave on.

        What this article failed to mention is that Vitamin C is as important – if not more so – for heart health as magnesium – and some doctors (the smart ones, at least), if asked, will give massive doses of vitamin C intravenously to patients who’ve either suffered heart attacks or are at high risk of doing so.

      • jon w

        Magnesium Bis Glycinate is 100% absorbed due to its chemical structure. Other Mg supplements (including mg glycinate) are only partially absorbed and the remainder goes to the colon, where the mg causes the body to secrete water into the colon, causing loose stools. I have been taking the Bis-glycinate form for several weeks. Now I sleep 8 or more hours and have no loose stools.

    • Donna M

      With Magnesium, you shouldn’t be using supplements orally. you will only take in about 20-at most 50% of the pill while the rest is pushed from your system. One thing is that using oral can cause damage to your liver over time. I know i’m what 2-3 years later, BUT look into the spray Magnesium EASE. You can’t overdose on that as it regulates itself through your skin. It comes down to purity and instead of the pill going into your stomach and not getting what you need, go with a spray so you can get it into your skin and it goes right into your bloodstream.

  2. Cindie

    Help my son 23, is very ill! High cal ,low mag! His nutritionist put him on a cal/mag/zinc supplement! I asked about the transdermal mag .. She said he needs this combo? Is ths true.?
    What diff between nutritionist and naturopath..?? I worry she selling her products!!

    • Gwen B.

      I’ve recently listened to an interview with the doctor who wrote ” The Magnesium Miracle”. She encourages 2 times the magnesium of calcium in any supplement and she actually discourages the use of calcium supplements all together. She says we have so much in our blood and most of us eat dairy, etc. She says we get more than enough calcium in most cases and are terriby magnesium deficient as a nation. This causes atrophy in our bodies and calcification of our hearts. I through away my combo mag/ cal. supplements. They were hurting me rather than helping.

      • Debbie Stevens

        Thanks Gwen B. I recently started taking a supplement that included vit D, calcium, magnesium, and zinc because I thought they were needed for the vit D to work better. I have taken just extra calcium before and I got some chest discomfort (I believe it was my heart), so I stopped taking it and the discomfort went away. I thought it would work better with these other elements. I have hypothyroid and osteopenia.

    • Stacy

      While my grandfather was much older than your son and I don’t know anything more about magnesium then what stated above, the parathyoid’s ONLY job is to regulate calcium. I would look into that. Not to scare you but I feel I should let you know that my grandfather was high for years and no one ever looked into his parathyroid. He had the symptoms associated with hyperparathyroid and it wasn’t until 2mo before he passed away that I was able to get my mom to question the docs and take a further look. His body was riddled with cancer at that point. Just add it to your list to check off…better safe then sorry! There is a wonderful doc in Florida that wrote up an awesome guide. He even took the time to email me when I was desperate on finding why my grandfather kept going downhill and how to approach the doctors.

    • Joshua S


      I would highly recommend against any calcium supplementation. Any Chelated Magnesium supplement is good, but make sure it is from a reputable brand that doesn’t have any fillers, most likely at your local health food store. Zinc is important but it is fairly easy to get it from food sources. I know from personal experience that The Synergy Company has very high quality Organic multi vitamins. Switch your son to a whole food organic diet and get him off the Standard American Diet. Get a high quality Activated Carbon water filter as chlorine/chloromines can also greatly affect your health. I highly recommend anybody here take a trip to It has all the info you could need to know about healing and regaining health. I also read an interesting article about 6 very effective ways to increase magnesium, I use a few of them myself –

    • Aaryn

      Cindy, I know that this is an old post but please have your sons parathyroid gland checked out. After much research of my own, this is the best site I have some across I suggest you go through it thoroughly . High calcium is very dangerous and is one of the symptoms of parathyroid malfunction which is often overlooked. Magnesium deficiency is not always the answer in super high calcium readings and it is too serious to be overlooked, often taking many years to be diagnosed. To the others, thanks for the info on the magnesium oil and slow release brand, I am definitely getting myself some of this. I would like to add don’t forget about taking baths in food grade magnesium salts. You can order it online here ( Australian company)
      Good luck.

    • Kathy W.

      Hopefully by now you have discovered Dr. Normans website, There is only one cause of high calcium and only one cure. A parathyroid tumor can destroy your life. I know because by the time I had mine out, I had been misdiagnosed for 10 years. Read the website, the solution is simple. Dr. Norman and his staff are top notch. I would not have the surgery done anywhere else. Both my sister and I had the surgery at Dr. Normans clinic.
      Calcium readings over 10 mean there is a parathyroid tumor, just that simple. My doctor “watched” mine for years. Lucky to still be alive!!!
      Also, read about supplementation on Dr. Normans site. My doctor had me supplement with calcium. Very dangerous!

  3. Gigi

    I am so thankful that naturopaths are able to open up and be honest about mineral deficiencies. For more than 30 years (since the birth of my eldest child) doctors have kept me on high dosages of inderal to prevent anxiety and migraines. Now, 30 years later, I went from 127 lbs. to 200 lbs. (a side effect of the medication) have developed fluid around my ankles and abdomen, have no energy, and still have tension headaches. I did my research to find natural remedies for anxiety and got over 30 interesting hits on magnesium. I rushed to the local supermarket and picked up a bottle. I feel better than if I had take two 40 mg tablets of my medication. Sadly, My doctors over the years have never suggested that I stop taking inderal which was creating the potential for serious health issues. I would love to involve myself in a support group for this wonderful mineral. I know that exercise, a sensible diet, rest, and the right supplements are key to losing this exorbitant amount of weight. Drastic weight loss surgery is no longer an answer for me. I have found my answer. When I am successful with the weight loss, I will write a book journaling my experiences.

    • Larry

      You Go Girl!!!

      Make sure you also research iodine. The story is the same as for magnesium. We MUST have it and don’t get it. We are instead poisoned from bromine and fluoride. You don’t need a lot, it is easier than magnesium to get but you may have some initial adverse effects due to your body dumping accumulated bromine (look up bromine poisoning, my daughter had every symptom listed after starting iodine, but lost 8 lbs and all her breast lumps in about 1 week!!)

      We have found magnesium glycinate to be a pretty good source to take orally. Transdermal is good, but I realized (when I tried adding more orally with each meal) that I was not getting enough that way. .

  4. Karen

    My experience and research shows that T3 increases the CoA line of nutrients which can quite quickly deplete magnesium. If one can’t get magnesium levels up and if blood pressure is rising or fluctuating, check insulin levels. Magnesium opens cells and allows insulin to be properly used. If insulin gets too high, you have insulin resistance and it doesn’t allow magnesium into the cells. Just another avenue to investigate.


  5. shtove

    I’ve been messing around with magnesium for a couple of months.

    Tried mag malate pills + mag chloride spray, but the best is epsom salts spray. Works well for sleep, for me at least.

    There’s a robust discussion on sulphate v chloride at this link:

  6. ger her has been disabled. what book is she talking about for info on magnesium?

    • April P.

      I believe she is talking about her book, Stop the Thyroid Madness”. You can also check out “The Magnesium Miracle”. Ebay or Amazon has a good selection of new and used.

      • Janie Bowthorpe

        The book I’m referring to is the one this blog post referred to: Transdermal Magnesium Therapy by Mark Sircus, OMD

        But for those with thyroid disease, yes, the Stop the Thyroid Madness book is a detailed outline of what patients have learned about better thyroid treatment and their wisdom. The above book, though, is the one that was so good about Magnesium.

  7. melrob

    I was just recently diagnosed in February of hypothyroid and also found out I was in full-blown menopause. At that point my doctor put me on 30 milligrams of armor. Also I was put on estrogen progesterone bioidenticals, testosterone cream. My bloodwork came back that all levels were much better. My t3 was a 3.2 after 3 weeks on armour…. but then she increased it tom 60mgs…. at first I was feeling a lil hyper like energy. (On the 60mgs) Then 3wks into it we tesred again and now my levels of t3 were at 4.0… I asked about my heartreat/pulse becuz it was about 90 beats.and a explained that I feel a little hyper. And that I could feel my heartbeat ing when I was laying down. That was last friday,over the course of the weekend and into the beginning of the week I found myself waking up with sweats, leg cramps muscle tenderness and frequently going to the bathroom along with heart palpitations and extremely vivid nightmares and waking up quite often. When I call the doctor she simply told me that it was anxiety that I was experiencing. And that I could lower the dosage of armor bye cutting it in half and to come back and see her again for blood work in 3 weeks. Does anyone have any suggestions well what they think might be happening because I felt fine until we did the increase and I noticed all these other issues coming about over the course of several weeks and now she’s telling me its anxiety??? Any information or help would be great… Thank you

  8. Shanae

    Hello all! My doctor tested me for low magnesium levels and my value was 1.8 the normal range for serum magnesium value is between 1.7-2.8 even though I am in the normal range is it still low ?

  9. Sandra

    I have gained 30 pounds in the last 11 months and just keep gaining no mater what! My hair texture has change to that of (as my hairdresser says)as horse’s tail. I feel like I can’t concentrate. It isn’t menopause because I am 47 years old and had a complete hysterecomoy at age 29. My chloresterol suddenly went high 12 months ago and I have been on two meds and no change in levels. Stopped taking them because I simply could not tolerate them as they caused terrible leg pains and just felt terrible!! Thyroid test level was a 2.8 (per doc.). Recently was told I have high levels of magnesium in blood and should retest in six weeks? Family history of thyroid disease…..My Mom was hypothyroid. Anyone have any suggestions?

    • Sandra

      Forgot to mention when I asked my doctor about posssibility of hypothyroidism his reply was “your symptoms are the same as depression. I can prescribe something for that.”. I Am NOT depressed!

  10. Shannon

    I am hypothyroid, have heart PVCs or premature beats. Nine days after taking magnesium citrate and two days after being on 500-600 mg the palpitations and irregularity got better! I still have the irregular beats but the severity is not so often. I have not been on it long so it will take awhile to get into my cells. I also have muscle twitches all over under my skin and anxiety and depression. I am also using magnesium oils and lotions since I cannot tolerate more than the oral dose I mentioned due to the bowel issues. I strongly agree that magnesium works. I was near losing my sanity and quality of life and feel that it is slowly coming back.

    • Louise

      Your bowel issues are because you are using the citrate form of mag. You can get around this by spacing your doses out through the day, or switching to a different form of mag, such as glycinate. xx

  11. James

    I have had numbness and tingling in my right foot and calf for at least 5 years. It was uncomfortable to walk and was often hard to sleep. I went to several doctors to no avail.
    After I started taking Magnesium gluconate at 600mg/day, all my symptoms went away. I have
    intemittent diarrea problems and am looking into reducing oral magnesium and taking some
    by nebulizer or by spraying epson salt solution on my skin and rubbing it in. Does any one have a solution to my problem. If I reduce the oral Magnesium my symptoms come back.

    • Louise

      As I said in reply to Shannon, chances are it’s the form of mag that you’re on that’s giving you the runs. Try glycinate and see if that helps any. You could also try oxide, which is often said to be less easily absorbed, but it worked well for me. Oxide and glycinate are not known for causing diarrhoea.

  12. Mary

    Please also consider adrenal supplementation as it assists thyroid.. isocort or endodren are good to take. Magnesium threonate citrate or taurate are good absorbable forms. Mag helped me with my anxiety but I also I started mercury chelation which has also helped tremendously. Get your metals checked with dmps challenge test. Find alt. Med doc to help. Mine were really high.mercury affects your thyroid a lot!!

  13. Kristina


    What is the recommended dosage for topical magnesium oil?

    Thank you.

  14. viral

    Please can anyone suggest me any laboratory which is testing for RBC Magnesium in INDIA..Or any other international laboratory to whom I can send blood sample directly to check..

  15. Margaret

    I have recently had bloodwork done and my white blood cell count is high, all other results are within normal ranges. Could magnesium supplements be responsible for my high blood count? I am very anxious about this and have to wait 6 weeks to be retested to see if my count has come down (the Dr has also prescribed a course of anti-biotics).

    • Cher A

      Yes, I have found a very strong correlation between high inflammation and/or high white blood cell count, and a substancial magnesium (glycinate) deficiency with my RA diagnosis.

  16. Teresa

    I was put on synthetic Synthroid aprox. 20 years ago due a TSH blood test, extreme fatigue, 1/3 end of eyebrows missing, etc. At the time, I knew nothing about the thyroid much less the fact that I had one. The synthetic Synthroid worked well for awhile but a new DO doctor said I was not converting the T4 to T3 so she put me on desiccated Armour Thyroid which contains both T4 and T3. I did better on the Armour but to get my T3 in a good lab range, she let my TSH go below the lab range which is very controversial among many doctors. To make a verrrry long story short, my DO doctor left town and I went through several other doctors that sent me on a roller coaster ride between Synthroid again and then back to Armour and as a last resort, a compounded med of T4 and T3 to get my lab ranges corrected. I had educated myself on hormones in general and was taking every supplement recommended to support the thyroid and adrenals. During this timeline, I was also diagnosed with extreme Adrenal Fatigue 2X using saliva tests.

    To say the least, I was fed up with the doctor appointments, their lack of knowledge, lab tests and begging for the right medication. By accident, I ran across an article on magnesium deficiency which led me to the website of Dr. Carolyn Dean ( and the rest is history…that was 7 months ago. I followed her advice, blogs and supplementation recommendations and was able to get my body to work on its own. No more thyroid medication, iron supplements or adrenal meds. I now take 3 of her products…ReMag, ReLyte & ReAline plus iodine and her recommended supplementation regiment. Dr. Dean’s liquid mineral products are 100% absorbed and do not cause the side effect of diarrhea before you reach the therapeutic effect your body needs. Please do not do this if you are not totally committed to the process and educating yourself first. I listen to my body unlike my doctors……and I feel great.

  17. Angie G

    No one mentioned Graves Disease or Hyperthyroidism.. Would magnesium work well for these symptoms?

    • Xylinda Morpheus

      while i wouldn’t say it would be a cure for these symptoms, it wouldn’t hurt to get the mag rbc test … you could also join the magnesium advocacy group on facebook and the ftpo thyroid groups to get info

  18. handtalker

    MK7 necessary for our calcium to work right and not get lost in our organs. I use Bone Up. It has a great nutrients for helping bone density, The formula for calcium in this works for me. Made by Jarrow. I bought at my health food store. 240 caps, 3 2x day.

  19. Jessica

    If anyone is experiencing loose stools or GI problems with Magnesium intake please add a good probiotic to your daily regime as this will certainly help control these issues. A good probiotic should have 14 billion good bacteria – like PB 8 brands for example. I eat one yogurt per day. Let me also say that gout or pseudogout sufferers will be helped a lot by magnesium supplementation and lots and lots of water. I am interested in learning about iodine and in what format it should be taken in to remove bromine. Can anyone share info or loinks on this subject for more detail please! Thanks…Jess

  20. Susan Wenzel-Bertelsen

    There is a brand that I use – it’s a Magnesium Gel to rub on the body or put in the bath…Dr Beckers BioNutrients. It is reasonably priced and they often times have a buy one get one free. They also have the mag tablets and many other very high-quality supplements. He also has a very informative television show.

  21. Robin Y

    Guys – transdermal magnesium therapy is a huge con and is unproven. It doesn’t work. Please don’t waste you’re money.

    • Maddy

      Robin, I respectfully disagree. Forever people have used epsom salts soaks for muscle aches, active stuff….Magnesium absorbed transdermally. I have a mag lotion, and an old whiplash injury which means my shoulders and neck area often feels like a rock instead of a muscle tissue. I was SHOCKED, totally blown away when I used the lotion there. So much better. And it is repeatable. If I go several days or a week without I can feel the stiffness return, lotion releases it.

  22. Ana Maria Mackitarian

    Is Magnesium Cloride For Analises, good for your health?

  23. Traci

    Has anyone found a good solution for magnesium for adrenal health that doesn’t have any of the fillers that are bad for Hashimotos Thyroiditis people?


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