I’ve been debating for weeks whether or not to write this blog. I’ve finally decided to get it out of my head and express my latest concern with the direction of nutritional research and dietary supplementation.
I’ve been around the health scene since before health foods stores came to town. I’ve watched the industry grow from a few simple food-based supplements to over 55,000 dietary supplements, most of which are synthetic and far from simple. I saw my medical and naturopathic colleagues prescribe higher and higher doses of supplements or move to IM and IV administration trying to get them to work. Since I also practiced homeopathy, herbology, and acupuncture, I didn’t just depend on supplements, so I never got into megadosing.
In 2005, when I realized that Codex Alimentarius was trying to regiment all dietary supplements into low potency, synthetics, I decided to promote food-based vitamins and highly absorbed minerals. Because of my own extreme need for magnesium and the laxative effect I got from all magnesium products, I tried to encourage mineral manufacturers to develop a non-laxative magnesium. They said it would be too expensive and require too much customer education. Since it had to be done, I decided to do it myself with the help of a brilliant chemist and forward-thinking manufacturer. The result is ReMag®.
The key to being non-laxative is the high absorption of ReMag as a stabilized magnesium ion. Watching the effects of ReMag over the last 5 years has made me realize that no other magnesium product has been able to saturate the body and eliminate all magnesium deficiency symptoms. Many people who thought they had a disease condition and used medications found that their symptoms abated and they could wean off their drugs. This was incredible and miraculous for our customers but made us the target of the FDA who warned us that treating disease conditions with ReMag makes ReMag a drug. Because only drugs can treat disease, according to the FDA, (a non medical body), we would have to go through billion dollar drug trials – or change our message to say that ReMag just supports the structure and function of the body.
However, we are not using ReMag to treat disease, we are using it to replace magnesium losses in the body. It’s not our fault that doctors misdiagnose magnesium deficiency as a myriad of diseases and then commit a form of medical malpractice by treating magnesium deficiency with drugs.
My point is that I’ve done a lot of work to create a non-laxative magnesium, I’ve written books and blogs, and talked about ReMag non-stop for almost 20 years, yet the new ND’s, MD’s, PhD, Health Coaches, and Nutritional Consultants are still not paying attention. Instead of learning how to use magnesium to saturate the body to achieve optimum structure and function results, they are frantically looking for other causes of chronic disease and ignoring magnesium. That’s where the genetic testing, and extensive lab work come into play – but even if this testing shows magnesium deficiency, practitioners will still not recommend ReMag.
And that’s my fault because I refuse to wholesale magnesium to practitioners because it means the cost of ReMag would double to the consumer. So, I’d rather maintain an online store to sell directly to the public to keep the costs down. It also means that people get their magnesium education from me and my staff instead of someone who doesn’t have time to learn all that I’ve discovered about magnesium in the past 20 years.
Instead practitioners are still recommending ineffective products. A blog on Eat.Move.Hack outlined a recommended supplement list by a PhD theoretical researcher whose opinions are being sought out in the health and supplement world and who is prominent enough be asked her opinion on what supplements people should take. At the end of her list the blogger commented “So that’s quite a lengthy list of supplements! And the somewhat frustrating thing is, if you purchase them and take them, you may not notice any difference in how you feel.”
Duh. You’re being advised to take supplements that “theoretically” may help you. But you should know “you may not notice any difference in how you feel.” How foolish is that? Don’t you take supplements in order to feel better? That means you’re being asked to take these supplements on faith. Isn’t science supposed to stop this whole taking things on faith business?
Even worse, the list she recommends includes a calcium/magnesium combination with 2 parts calcium to 1 part magnesium perpetuating that myth and perpetuating the calcification of the population. This recommendation comes in spite of 10 years of scientific research that shows taking calcium supplements increases heart disease in women!
The same theoretical researcher was interviewed by Mercola about the recently discovered link between vitamin D and autism. Nowhere in the interview is the reader cautioned about the absolute need for magnesium if you are going to supplement with vitamin D.
It can be quite seductive to hear about the latest research and the latest theories but when they are taken out of context they serve to confuse the public about how they should engage this new information. For example, research on NFR2, a leucine protein that regulates antioxidant proteins gained popularity and immediately NFR2 supplements came out on the market. Since then the research has been split right down the middle between it helping or harming with no way of knowing what it’s going to do for you or to you.
Theories are great and like I said, very seductive, but when they are presented by people who are not trained clinicians they tend to favor the data not the human individual. And believe me the human individual can be overwhelmed by the sheer amount of negative data or the sheer number of supplements they should take making it seem an insurmountable chore for them to get well.
When you take supplements they should make you feel better and if they don’t, why bother taking them? You can do your own experiment and go on and off your supplements, one at a time, to see if you notice any difference.
I want my supplements to make me feel better and that’s why they are made to be highly absorbable and effective. When you do your experiment and try them I’m sure you will agree.
Carolyn Dean MD ND
The Doctor of the Future®
SUMMITS: Join me on Rewire Your Brain to Think Thin launching Oct 16. My talk is on Oct 24th. Yes, it’s free but if you want to purchase the recordings and transcripts you will have that option as well.
RESOURCES: Along the borders and in the links of my web site you can find my books, writings, and my call-in radio show. Email your questions to: email@example.com.