Masters of Health Magazine April 2019 - Page 47

Low Magnesium by Itself Can Cause Release of Stress Hormones

We don’t have to look far to find reasons for our feelings of anxiety and stress. Looking for reasons, people or circumstances that have assaulted us to cause our stress may be way off the mark. The mere issue of magnesium deficiency alone may be the cause of feelings of anxiety and stress hypersensitivity. Another reason is dehydration. So, remember to drink enough mineral water (for electrolyte charge).

Magnesium can actually have a blocking effect on the release of adrenal catecholamines, if you have enough magnesium in reserve. [4] Magnesium ions control and regulate the flow of calcium in and out of calcium channels, as these ions are antagonistic. Excess calcium ions trigger release of adrenal catecholamines and further depress magnesium levels. Calcium can become a bully!

Excessive catecholamine release has a dehydrating effect because the resulting push of calcium ions into the calcium channels of the cell results in a depolarisation of the channel and consequent loss of water (and eventually also renal wasting of potassium). [3] The body in a sense panics when cell hydration levels drop too low. Magnesium however brings the water back into the cell to relax and dampen down the stress hormones, as it pushes the calcium back out to restore resting balance. [5]

A rise in calcium is therefore secondary to a decrease in magnesium [1, 3, 5]: When magnesium goes down, calcium goes up. When calcium goes up, it prompts release of adrenal catecholamines (stress hormones). Magnesium however, in sufficient amount, can control the calcium, which then can block the release of stress hormones.

Both low magnesium and cellular dehydration cause feelings of anxiety and acute stress. It can even lead to heart arrhythmia and atrial fibrillation if the magnesium gets low enough.

As we tend to get much more calcium for our food supply than magnesium, and many people suffer from renal wastage of magnesium, we are more likely to be magnesium deficient than calcium deficient. The more common danger is actually not getting enough magnesium.

Both low magnesium and cellular dehydration cause

feelings of anxiety and acute stress