I’ve said many times that magnesium is responsible for the activity of 700-800 enzyme processes in the body. In the Aug 2017 edition of The Magnesium Miracle, I write about fourteen major functions that appear in a textbook on magnesium in a chapter called “Divalent Cation Metabolism: Magnesium.”
I’ll mention the first of the 14 functions and follow up with the rest in later blogs. Some of the language is very technical but I want to give you a sense of the sophistication of this simple mineral. As you read what magnesium is capable of doing, just imagine how many necessary functions are interrupted when a person is magnesium-deficient.
#1. Energy Production
Magnesium’s most important function is the creation of energy in the trillions of cells making up our body. Magnesium is a cofactor in the production of ATP (adenosine triphosphate) via ATP synthase. ATP is manufactured in the mitochondria and it must be bound to a magnesium ion (MgATP) in order to be biologically active. There are 1,000-2,000 mitochondria in each human cell and ATP is made in each one through a series of 8 steps called the Krebs cycle. What’s remarkable about magnesium is that it is indispensible in 6 of those 8 steps.
We think of the Krebs cycle as a pathway for the breakdown of glucose but it takes pyruvate from the glycolysis cycle and makes ATP energy molecules. The Krebs cycle is also necessary for the breakdown of all metabolites: sugars, amino acids and fatty acids. Each of these groups of molecules has a pathway that leads into the Krebs cycle. In addition, intermediates from the Krebs cycle can go the other direction and be used to synthesize amino acids and fatty acids. With the help of magnesium, the Krebs cycle in the mitochondria is our basic life force.
Mitochondrial dysfunction is being investigated by both allopathic and alternative medicine but any treatment must begin with therapeutic levels of magnesium.
ATP has many other functions besides being an energy source. Transmembrane ATPase imports substances necessary for cell metabolism and exports toxins and wastes across cell membranes. A hydrogen-potassium ATPase creates the gastric proton pump, which acidifies the contents of the stomach. Many other pumps and transporters are all directed by ATPases with magnesium as its necessary cofactor.
The ATP energy of the body is a necessary fuel that you can’t create if you don’t have enough magnesium to make that energy.
Magnesium is the most important building block for creating a healthy body, which begins with good stable energy. With solid energy you will accomplish more, have refreshing sleep, you can exercise more, and feel more confident about your increasingly healthy body.
Of course, the best magnesium to take is ReMag – 100% absorbed at the cellular level with no laxative effect!
Carolyn Dean MD ND
The Doctor of the Future®
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