Diagnosing Magnesium Deficiency - Dr. Carolyn Dean MD ND

Diagnosing Magnesium Deficiency

August 11, 2020

Why do I recommend the Magnesium Deficiency Questionnaire instead of magnesium blood testing?

In The Magnesium Miracle I wrote about two famous magnesium researchers Drs. Bella and Burton Altura who have been researching magnesium and its clinical application for over forty years. They helped develop and test the Ionized Magnesium electrode, produced by Nova Biomedical of Waltham, Massachusetts. The Alturas found that the ionized magnesium test is reliable and takes the guesswork out of diagnosing magnesium deficiency. With such testing in hundreds of clinical trials the Alturas and groups of other researchers have been able to show that dozens of health conditions are unequivocally related to magnesium deficiency.”

However, the ionized magnesium test is still not available, except in some research facilities – one of which is Purdue University where we began conducting magnesium absorption studies. Our first published paper is named “Circulating Ionized Magnesium as a Measure of Supplement Bioavailability: Results from a Pilot Study for Randomized Clinical Trial.” It is an ongoing placebo and cross over blinded control study.

Research Results

1.    iMg (ionized magnesium testing) is the better marker for magnesium status in the body. Serum magnesium is bound up and not usable. However, magnesium ions are available for immediate use in the cells.

2.    Using a molecular size analyzer (Malvern Zetasizer Nano ZS, Malvern, UK), we confirmed that the majority of the particle size of ReMag® formulation is in the picometer range. The test was repeated three times.

3.    ReMag goes to the ionized magnesium state and is not bound up. Its small size allows it to be absorbed higher up in the GI tract and avoid the laxative effect.

4. Magnesium oxide and magnesium citrate are less bioavailable and larger in size compared to ReMag, thus they do not affect ionized magnesium as efficiently.

5.    Elevated ionized magnesium was measurable in the blood within 2-4 hours. Our head of research, Dr. Taylor Wallace said that this fluctuation with one single dose is very important. He said he would not have anticipated mineral electrolytes changing with 1 single dose.

6.    Clinical investigations have demonstrated that ionized magnesium, but not serum magnesium, is depressed in a number of clinical conditions such as migraine, individuals with noninsulin-dependent diabetes, patients with asthma, and women with high-risk pregnancies

7.    A subclinical magnesium deficiency can occur when serum magnesium levels are within the lower reference range. Therefore, serum total magnesium levels may not be sufficient for diagnosis of deficiency.

8.    Our findings of a more robust ionized response, when compared to serum magnesium, are similar to those reported by Altura et al.

Until we have the Ionized Magnesium Test more widely available, I’ve developed a Magnesium Deficiency Questionnaire that both alerts the patient to the possibility that their symptoms are due to magnesium deficiency and gives them a score that can determine their level of deficiency. It’s also a test they can repeat to see how quickly they are improving as they begin taking ReMag with the goal of reaching saturation and symptom relief.


[i] Altura BM, “Sudden-death ischemic heart disease and dietary magnesium intake: is the target site coronary vascular smooth muscle?” Med Hypotheses, vol. 5, no. 8, pp. 843–848, 1979.

[ii] Altura BM, “Introduction: Importance of Mg in physiology and medicine and the need for ion selective electrodes.” Scand J Clin Lab Invest Suppl, vol. 217, pp. 5–9, 1994.

To hear the audio recording of our recent conversation with the leader of the research team, Dr. Taylor Wallace, go here: https://drcarolyndeanlive.com/2020/06/15/tonights-guest-dr-taylor-wallace-on-dr-carolyn-dean-live/

About Carolyn Dean MD ND

Dr. Carolyn Dean is a medical doctor and naturopath. She’s the author of over 35 books including best seller The Magnesium Miracle along with IBS for DummiesHormone BalanceDeath by Modern Medicine, and 110 Kindle books.

In 2011, she launched her RnA ReSet formulas through New Capstone, Inc. and brought her 50 years of experience into her proprietary, unique formulations that give every individual at any stage of wellness or illness the necessary building blocks for sustained health, vitality, and well-being.

In 2017 New Capstone, Inc. launched RnA ReSet PRO to meet the growing demand of interested health care practitioners determined offer these formulas to their clients.

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