Are You Confused about Supplementing with Magnesium, Calcium, Vitamins D and K2?

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“I’m taking 20,000iu of Vitamin D because my doctor said it was low….I just got out of the hospital with a kidney stone….What do you think caused that?”

“I have osteoporosis, and I’m taking large doses of calcium….My joints are swollen and sore….My bone density test is worse….”

“I can’t eat green veggies because of my blood thinner….My osteopenia is worse, and I’m worried I’ll end up with osteoporosis….”

Do you recognize any of the above? Do you, too, have a laundry list of evidence that you aren’t feeling well, even though you are taking high doses of several supplements? 

Every day I (and my customer service team) receive emails from you with stories just like these. Let’s begin the process of clearing your confusion so that you understand how to make good decisions about your supplements. We’ll start this process with clearing any misunderstandings you have about why and how to use magnesium, calcium, Vitamin D, and Vitamin K supplements.

Your Doctor Doesn’t Necessarily Know

It’s unfortunate, but most allopathic physicians have very little education in the area of nutrition. While they certainly are capable of choosing and writing prescriptions for blood tests — so you can use the results as guides for your own wellness research — most physicians don’t fully understand the nutritional implications of these tests. 

For example, let’s say you have your Vitamin D tested. A low score on Vitamin D may not be a bad thing that needs to be corrected. (Hint for Later: Vitamin D levels are connected to your magnesium, calcium, and Vitamin K levels.) But chances are that your doctor will give you high doses of Vitamin D because their training tells them the low score is a problem. They will correct your so-called, “Vitamin D deficiency” in isolation from its other nutrient partners.

Magnesium, Calcium, Vitamin D and Vitamin K are Partners

Since readers are so used to the allopathic approach of “isolate and treat,” they don’t understand that there is a strong relationship among magnesium, calcium, Vitamin D, and Vitamin K. In my next four posts I will describe each of these nutrients, how they contribute to this partnership, and how you will know whether you need to supplement one or more of them. 

Why Isolating Each Nutrient Is an Issue

In my 2017 Edition of The Magnesium Miracle, I share information about the relationship among magnesium, calcium, and Vitamin D:

Magnesium is required for many steps along the pathway of vitamin D metabolism, including transformation of vitamin D from its storage form (which is also the supplement form) to its active form. That means if you take extremely high doses of vitamin D, you can plummet into magnesium deficiency and not know what’s happening.

To make matters worse, calcium is a mineral that Vitamin D grabs from the diet and holds on to for dear life. When you start taking high doses of Vitamin D, you can accumulate so much calcium that it overrides your magnesium and forces it out of your body to overutilize magnesium, block magnesium, purge magnesium, build up calcium (causing calcification), and propel people into serious magnesium deficiency….

Later in the book, I add information about the role of Vitamin K:

For the proper functioning of vitamin D, calcium, and magnesium, I recommend vitamin K2. Dr. Weston Price, the inspiration for the Weston A. Price Foundation, discovered the X factor, which turned out to be Vitamin K2. Vitamin K2 helps guide calcium into the bones, where it is needed, instead of leaving it circulating to calcify blood vessels and other soft tissues.

Our Opening Scenarios Revisited

Let’s look at our opening scenarios through a lens that the nutrients involved are partners and that each and every one of them is necessary for balance and wellness.

  1. “I’m taking 20,000iu of Vitamin D because my doctor said it was low….I just got out of the hospital with a kidney stone….” My thought is that this person is supplementing too much Vitamin D when he/she is magnesium deficient. It’s also possible because of this nutrient imbalance that calcium isn’t moving into the bones effectively. (Posts 4 and 5 in this series (out next week) will discuss Vitamin D supplementation in depth.)
  2. “I have osteoporosis, and I’m taking large doses of calcium….My joints are swollen and sore….My bone density test is worse….” In this case, I would suggest supplementing more magnesium and gradually decreasing calcium supplementation. If someone is magnesium deficient, supplementing calcium will not increase bone health. (Blogs 2 and 3 in this series (out this week) will discuss Magnesium and Calcium supplementation in depth, respectively.)
  3. “I can’t eat green veggies because of my blood thinner….My osteopenia is worse, and I’m worried I’ll end up with osteoporosis….” As I mentioned earlier, Vitamin K guides calcium into the bones. Could it be that this writer has a Vitamin K deficiency?  (Post 5 in this series (out next week) will discuss Vitamin K supplementation.)

What’s Next?

To continue exploring the relationship among magnesium, calcium, Vitamin D, and Vitamin K, listen to these recordings. Additionally, if you would like to get a head start on creating a balanced supplementation program, here are my supplement recommendations. These are the supplements I use myself on a daily basis, so this list is updated whenever I change my supplement routine.

Aloha,

Dr. Carolyn Dean

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