Vitamin D can be activated to hormone D within some types of cancer cells

Normal and cancerous pancreatic cells express the enzyme, 1a(OH)ase, that converts inactive vitamin D into active hormone D. [1] Asking what benefit pancreatic cancer cells might receive from converting more of the inactive vitamin into the powerful hormone D than normal pancreas cells seems like a reasonable question to consider. The excerpt below mentions some other locations that the enzyme has been found and mentions work from a different study regarding the enzyme in the diseases sarcoidosis and psoriasis. The research article the excerpt is from focuses on the use of extra vitamin 25-D or a modified form of it as a possible way to reduce proliferation of the cancer cells.

Zehnder et al. examined the distribution of 1a(OH)ase in extra renal tissues (41). They reported specific staining for 1a(OH)ase in skin (basal keratinocytes, hair follicles), lymph nodes (granulomata), colon (epithelial cells and parasympathetic ganglia), pancreas (islets), adrenal medulla, brain (cerebellum and cerebral cortex) and placenta (decidual and trophoblastic cells). They also reported over-expression of the enzyme in disease states including psoriatic skin and sarcoidosis.”  [1]

The use of extra vitamin D may not equally benefit all types of patients or possibly all types of cancer. Trials with supplements of vitamin D in live prostate cancer patients have not been found to be reliably beneficial. [2] Supplements of vitamin D and calcium have not been found to reduce fracture risk in healthy pre-menopausal women. [3] Educational materials for physicians may not include information about the risks associated with vitamin D supplements for some types of patients that are known to have risk of having low 25D values along with elevated 1,25D such as patients with sarcoidosis or cancer of the parathyroid gland.[4] [26]

Few research studies about vitamin D deficiency or effects include blood tests of both the vitamin and the hormone. The hormone form is less chemically stable and the lab test for it is more expensive than the lab test for the vitamin. Checking only the level of vitamin D  for assessing deficiency is based on the assumption that the converting enzyme is carefully controlled within the kidneys and that excess hormone D won’t build up but the enzyme is also made by some types of cancer cells and white blood cells and even within the placenta of pregnant mammals.[21] If the hormone is especially important within the placenta for growing a baby than it might also be important for growing a tumor. Including less vitamin D in the diet of prostate, breast or colon cancer patients might help more than offering more. But extra vitamin D may be helpful for other patients, and checking both lab values may help to be sure a reduced blood level of 25-D isn’t because it ‘s being converted to extra 1,25-D outside of the kidney rather than being a diet or sun deficiency.

Without also checking the blood levels of 1,25-D it is impossible to know if all patients with depressed levels of 25-D are truly deficient in hormone 1,25-D or whether they simply have depressed levels of the precursor 25-D. The website, Chronic Illness has more information regarding having both tests performed accurately: [6] Taking too much of either form of D regularly can lead to harmful side effects and long term bone loss and soft tissue calcification problems. [20] People with typical health responses will break down some of the excess but a large dose for months can build up to an excess. The risk is increased if there is an undiagnosed problem leading to increased conversion to 1,25-D.

If someone’s diet includes fortified breakfast cereal, toast, milk, yogurt and other fortified beverages and snack bars and the fish that are naturally good sources of vitamin D then too much supplemental vitamin D may be consumed over time without a single capsule having been taken. The average healthy person would have the enzymes needed to break down the excess but chronically ill patients may not have the enzyme that deactivates hormone D. Vitamin D is fat soluble and can be stored. That aspect of vitamin D metabolism may have been critically important to health during winter months before the fortification of foods became common.

/Disclaimer – I have tried to share my concerns regarding the possible societal and personal risks of over-fortification and over-supplementation with vitamin D. If taking excess vitamin D was truly helpful than why hasn’t it helped more people who have tried it by now? Instead supplementation has been associated with an increase in cholesterol levels. [14] Some extra vitamin D is necessary and beneficial when there is an actual deficiency of both the vitamin and the hormone but it is not helpful if the vitamin D blood levels are low because the vitamin is being converted into elevated levels of the very powerful hormone D. Psoriasis [22] and sarcoidosis are painful diseases and the most effective treatment may require avoidance of the precursors to hormone D. Topical use of 1,25-D [24] and light therapy [25] has been tested for psoriasis and found beneficial so some individuals might have a problem using dietary sources of D.

Many foods and beverages are fortified with vitamin D now and the previous fortification levels of liquid milk had already largely eliminated most problems with rickets/vitamin D deficiency during childhood. [7,8,9,10,11] I screened many patients and educated regarding the need for adequate food sources of vitamin D or sunlight for years and during that time only met one child with early signs of rickets. His legs developed normally after sardines were added to his dairy free diet (milk allergy). Now bread and breakfast cereal and other nondairy beverages are also fortified with vitamin D. He would’t need to look only to sardines for vitamin D now but he would need to read labels. Unlike milk, the fortification levels for vitamin D are not set at any consistent level in the newer fortified products. A yogurt may have 50% fortification or zero extra fortification. Food fads to sell more products can be dangerous if the fortified chemical can be stored and possibly collect to dangerous levels. Those smaller percentages of fortification from the varied sandwiches and yogurts might add up over time especially if there is an undiagnosed problem leading to conversion of the vitamin to the hormone. Oat bran is safe but vitamin D in excess is not. A list of overdose side effects of vitamin D: [5]

I do have bias against excessive fortification of the food supply with vitamin D because both myself and my significant other have chronic conditions that cause depressed lab values of vitamin D and elevated levels of hormone D. That also means that I have first hand knowledge regarding what living with the side effects of elevated hormone D is like. Rickets can cause pain but so can the elevated hormone D levels and the elevated calcium levels that increased hormone D can cause. The firsthand knowledge regarding calcium, phosphorus and vitamin D physiology helped me recognize similar symptoms when they occurred in my puppy when she was sick with Parvovirus. The canine illness is frequently deadly. She only got better when I limited foods during the recovery period that were naturally rich or fortified with vitamin D and excess calcium/phosphorus. Pathogens have learned how to use our body’s natural processes for their own benefit. Trying to fight disease while providing the pathogens with the foods that they thrive on is largely a waste of effort. (Feed a fever but starve a cold. – a somewhat true old wive’s tale.)

Taking extra CLA, an essential fatty acid, [15, 16, 17] and limiting foods rich in arachidonic acid [19] may benefit individuals who are fighting prostate and breast cancer. Similar metabolic pathways may be involved with other forms of cancer or chronic disease but not necessarily. [18] Some types of pathogens have learned how to convert nutrients that normally are stored within cellular membranes into food sources. Feeding the body and starving the cancer would make more therapeutic sense than inundating the body with chemicals that kill both the healthy and unhealthy tissue.

Health care is not affordable if it focuses on symptoms and doesn’t tackle the underlying causes of disease./

  1.  Schwartz G, et. al., “Pancreatic cancer cells express 25-hydroxyvitamin D-1a-hydroxylase and their proliferation is inhibited by the prohormone 25-hydroxyvitamin D3,” (Carcinogenesis vol.25 no.6 pp.1015–1026, 2004) [] Excerpts: “Two samples obtained from infiltrating adenocarcinoma of the pancreas displayed robust and extensive expression of 1a(OH)ase in (Figure 2C, left two panels). High expression levels were also found in ductal breast carcinoma (Figure 2C, top right) and in a section of pediatric renal cell carcinoma (Figure 2C, bottom right). Furthermore, we found positive staining for 1a(OH)ase in the autonomic ganglia in colon and in the bile ducts of the liver (data not shown).” . . . “Our results confirm previous findings of expression of 1a(OH)ase in normal pancreas. Moreover, they demonstrate for the first time that 1a(OH)ase is also expressed in pancreatic adenocarcinoma.”  [1]
  2. Article by Mary E. Dallas, “Calcium, Vitamin D Supplements May Pose Risks for Men With Prostate Cancer,” MedlinePlus  SOURCES: Louis Potters, M.D., chair, radiation medicine, North Shore – LIJ Health System, New Hyde Park, N.Y.; Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, news release, Aug. 7, 2012
  3. Article by Gina Kolata, “Calcium and Vitamin D Ineffective for Fractures, U.S. Preventive Services Task Force Says,” (June 12, 2012) []
  4. Physician Consideration Regarding Vitamin D,” (March 2012) MGHS, Nutrition and Medicine Committee, pdf [] website: []
  5. Cacitriol,” MedlinePlus []
  6. D-Metabolites Tests” []
  7. Article by Katherine Doheny, “The Baby Won’t Take a Bow” (April 4, 1995) LATimes [] *Not too worried about rickets in 1995.
  8. Article by Janet Stobart, “Global Health Watch: Rickets showing up in some British children,” (Jan 19, 2011) LATimes: [] (*~40 children in the UK were treated for it at one hospital in 2011.) Rickets is no longer a reportable disease in the US and statistics aren’t available.
  9. Lazol JP, Cakan N, Kamat D. “10-year case review of nutritional rickets in Children’s Hospital in Michigan,” Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2008 May;47(4):379-84. Epub 2008 Jan 11.  (*96% of the cases found were breast fed infants that weren’t receiving a supplement and ethnically may have had darker skin tones.)
  10. Top children’s surgeon says ‘poverty’ bone disease has returned in Southampton,” (Nov 12, 2010) Press Release, University Hospital Southampton: [] Excerpt:  “In my 22 years at Southampton General Hospital, this is a completely new occurrence in the south that has evolved over the last 12 to 24 months and we are seeing cases across the board, from areas of deprivation up to the middle classes, so there is a real need to get national attention focused on the dangers this presents.” […] “said Professor Nicholas Clarke, consultant orthopaedic surgeon at Southampton General Hospital and professor of paediatric orthopaedic surgery at the University of Southampton.”  (*So asking what changed in the one to two year time period preceding Nov. 2010 that would affect 20% of children at all income levels would seem a pertinent question rather than assuming that suddenly 20% of children were no longer receiving vitamin D fortified products and had stopped going outside. Low calcium or phosphorus can also cause rickets, not just low vitamin D. Elevated 1,25 D levels can lead to decreased bone mineralization. Twenty percent of children may have chronic inflammatory conditions that current science doesn’t recognize or test for.)
  11. Steichen JJ, Tsang RC, Greer FR, Ho M, Hug G. “Elevated serum 1,25 dihydroxyvitamin D concentrations in rickets in very low-birth-weight infants,” J Pediatr. 1981 Aug;99(2):293-8.  [] * 25D levels were low and 1,25 D levels were elevated. The infants were successfully treated with an increased amount of calcium and phosphorus but without a change in their vitamin D intake. The infant’s 25 D levels increased and the 1,25 D levels decreased after the change in calcium and phosphorus intake. These were premature infants, not average infants.
  12. Peter J. Malloy, J. Wesley Pike and David Feldman, “The Vitamin D Receptor and the Syndrome of Hereditary 1,25-Dihydroxyvitamin D-Resistant Rickets,” Endocrine Reviews April 1, 1999 vol. 20 no. 2 156-188 []
  13. Vitamin D3 1,25-Dihydroxyvitamin D, Interpretation” Medscape [] Excerpt: “In granulomatous disease such as lymphoproliferative disorders, sarcoidosis, tuberculosis, and inflammatory bowel disease, 1α-hydroxylase enzyme activity was found in macrophages as the extrarenal source of 1,25(OH)2 D. When 1α-hydroxylase is activated, it converts 25(OH)D to 1,25(OH)2 D, just as what occurs under physiologic conditions in the kidneys.[12] However, unlike the kidney, the 1α-hydroxylase in the macrophages in granulomatous diseases is not controlled by the usual physiologic regulators.”
  14. Vitamin D Supplements Won’t Help Cholesterol Levels: Study,” (Sept 4, 2012) MedlinePlus: [] SOURCES: Manish Ponda, M.D., M.S., assistant professor, clinical investigation, Laboratory of Biochemical Genetics and Metabolism, Rockefeller University, New York City; Michael Holick, M.D., professor, medicine, physiology and biophysics, Boston University School of Medicine; Sept. 4, 2012, Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology (* Vitamin D in normal metabolism is made from cholesterol and excess amounts of it are converted back into cholesterol so those who don’t need extra vitamin/hormone D are buying and taking a supplement of a slightly different form of cholesterol. Taking supplemental cholesterol is not a typical recommendation for anyone.)
  15. What Doctors Don’t Tell You (vol 13, issue 5): “CLA fatty acids may combat prostate cancer,” []
  16. Song HJ, et. al., “Conjugated linoleic acid inhibits proliferation and modulates protein kinase C isoforms in human prostate cancer cells,” Nutr Cancer. 2004;49(1):100-8  []
  17. Ochoa JJ, et. al., “Conjugated linoleic acids (CLAs) decrease prostate cancer cell proliferation: different molecular mechanisms for cis-9, trans-11 and trans-10, cis-12 isomers,” Carcinogenesis (2004) 25 (7): 1185-1191. []
  18. Field CJ, Schley PD, “Evidence for potential mechanisms for the effect of conjugated linoleic acid on tumor metabolism and immune function: lessons from n 3 fatty acids,” Am J Clin Nutr 2004;79:1190S–8S, Full text pdf: []
  19. A previous article of mine, “Prostate and Breast Cancer and omega 6s and 3s,” (May 16, 2012) Gingerjens: []
  20. “Hypervitaminosis D, Symptoms and presentation” Wikipedia []
  21. Chapter author, Daniel D Bickle, “Extrarenal Synthesis of 1,25-Dihydroxyvitamin D and Its Health Implications,” Vitamin D: Physiology, Molecular Biology, and Clinical Applications , Nutrition and Health 2010, pp 277-295, Ed. Michael F. Holick []
  22. Article by John Gever, “Low Vitamin D Plus Hypertension May Worsen Cardiovascular Risks,” (Jan. 7, 2008) MedPageToday: []  Excerpt: “Dr. Wang and colleagues could not rule out the possibility that vitamin D deficiency is not causative. “Unmeasured characteristics associated with vitamin D deficiency could account for the increased cardiovascular risk,” they acknowledged. They pointed out that “an alternate explanation for the present findings is that vitamin D deficiency is a marker of chronic nonspecific illness rather than a direct contributor to disease pathogenesis.” ” (* Depressed levels of vitamin D that are associated with elevated levels of hormone D would lead to increased wasting of magnesium and hypertension is a primary symptom of magnesium deficiency. Other aspects of cardiovascular disease are also related to magnesium deficiency.)
  23. Morimoto S, et. al., “Inverse relation between severity of psoriasis and serum 1,25-dihydroxy- vitamin D level,” J Dermatol Sci. 1990 Jul;1(4):277-82.  []
  24. Kowalzick L, “Clinical experience with topical calcitriol, (1,25-dihydroxy-vitamin D3) in psoriasis” Br J Dermatol. 2001 Apr;144 Suppl 58:21-5. []
  25. Amra Osmančević, “Vitamin D Status in Psoriasis Patients Treated with UVB Phototherapy,”  (2009, Sahlgrenska University Hospital, Institute of Clinical Sciences at Sahlgrnska Academy)[ ]
  26. The parathyroid glands and vitamin D,” Chapter Five in Endocrinology: An Integrated Approach. Nussey S, Whitehead S.Oxford: BIOS Scientific Publishers; 2001. []
Biochemistry and physiology are complicated and one answer is not going to work for every patient.

I don’t have all the answers or full access to the expensive research articles and journal subscriptions but I do have different questions. If the medical industry only asks the same questions then we will never learn how to cure or prevent chronic disease. One of the earliest symptoms of magnesium deficiency is hypertension and elevated 1,25 D levels lead to increased wasting of stored magnesium and decreased intestinal absorption of magnesium. Identifying individuals who have undiagnosed hypertension in order to stabilize them on pharmaceuticals will not be cheap or effective if the person’s hypertension was caused by magnesium deficiency. Magnesium is very inexpensive and hasn’t been known to cause side effects when added to foods or beverages. Adequate magnesium is essential for apoptosis and apoptosis is used by white blood cells to protect us from infected or precancerous cells.

True vitamin/hormone D deficiency can also be a cause for hypertension. It would be good to know for sure whether a depressed 25D level was signalling a metabolic pathway malfunction leading to elevated 1,25-D or a true combined vitamin/hormone D deficiency.

We don’t know what we don’t know. Learning requires being open to the idea that previous answers or theories might be wrong or might be wrong for some cases. Accurately testing 1,25 dihydroxy D levels in addition to 25-D would tell us whether the epidemic of low vitamin D levels is actually an epidemic of depressed vitamin D levels and elevated hormone D rather than an epidemic of actual deficiency.  Or, even better, it would tell us which patients are part of the epidemic of chronic illness and which actually are low in vitamin and hormone D and would benefit from modifying their diet or starting to use a supplement.

Edited 9/28/12 8:50pm EST,  edit-10/1/12

/The Short Disclaimer: Information presented on this site is not intended as a substitute for medical care and should not be considered as a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment by your physician./

Dietitian Recommends less Vitamin D and Calcium

We can cure the epidemic of ill health and obesity that has seized our nation and the world. The food supply is low on some important nutrients and has too much focus on calcium. Calcium is important but health is built on a variety of essential nutrients, and clean air and water of course.
We can have health if we seek to rebuild instead of hunt for a disease to name and for a magic bullet cure. There will always be a need for acute care but we are overloading the medical system with chronic degenerative disease. Chemotherapy kills and so do corticosteroids. They are powerful drugs that are aimed at the disease but our bodies get in the way. Food that nourishes with a full range of essential nutrients in forms that can be absorbed and used can help us heal ourselves from within.
We are designed to fight cancer and to rebuild organs using our own stem cells and white blood cells but we can only do that if they are working right. White blood cells protect us by patrolling for old, pre-cancerous or infected cells. The bad cells can be mercy-killed in a process called apoptosis. We grow new skin cells every day and new intestinal cells weekly. New cells of whatever type we need can be rebuilt from our own stem cells. Any organ can be ours for the making – if we have the essential nutrients in our food supply in a mixture that we can absorb.
Our food supply isn’t providing us with the variety of nutrients that we need, in ratios that we can absorb well. Our nutrient guidelines were developed in the 1940’s to help make K-rations that could keep our soldiers strong and healthy under conditions of war.  The original work has been reviewed and modified by the Institute of Medicine. The calcium guidelines were increased in 1997 and while they have been reviewed they haven’t been changed since. The increase was based on an estimation of how much calcium might be needed for better bone absorption.
Do we have stronger bones now as a nation then we did in 1996? That is a simple question with a simple answer – no.Our nation’s diet was changed in 1997 and since then chronic illness, obesity and osteoporosis rates have been expanding quicker than our budgets or belts.
We can’t grow strong bones out of excessive calcium and vitamin D supplements. Bones do require some vitamin D and calcium but we also need magnesium, strontium, vitamin K, and water to name a few essential nutrients.
Calcium is being consumed at levels that our bodies are not able to excrete. The kidneys actively save calcium and use magnesium to remove acidic wastes and some of the excess calcium. Diuretics and alcohol use also increase magnesium losses. Magnesium is lost in sweat but many brands of electrolyte beverages don’t contain it. Our food supply is low in magnesium and high in calcium from dairy products, fortified foods, and supplements.
The dairy products available in our U.S. food supply in the year 2007 provided 716 milligrams of calcium in just 351 calories of cheese and milk per day. Many people eat more than 351 calories of dairy products daily. On average we are consuming more cheese and less milk than we did prior to 1970. Cheese is a more concentrated source of fat and calcium than liquid milk.
Toddlers (n=925) usual intakes from food, beverages, and supplements as reported in FITS 2008 provided on average 892 mg/day of calcium and 160 mg/day of magnesium.
The abnormal vitamin D levels have been misunderstood. Low lab values are linked to ill health and obesity but more of the vitamin won’t fix the underlying problem. The mega-dose is a short term fix but not a long term cure for chronic illness and cancer. It is considered safe for everyone but it is only safe for those with healthy kidney control over the activation of vitamin D to hormone D. High levels of the active hormone D can cause health problems to worsen over time, adding to chronic degeneration.
Vitamin D has two forms and two lab tests of interest, and one test is more expensive. The cheap lab test for 25 hydroxy D (Dᴣ), is what most of the research is based on. It is the inactive form of the vitamin and is available as a supplement. It is considered safe at higher doses because it is assumed that all people, not just healthy people, have very good kidney control over the activation of the vitamin to the hormone. The enzyme needed for activation to 1,25 dihydroxy D is being produced uncontrollably by inflammatory white blood cells and it has been shown to be produced by some cancer cell strains as well.
We are not deficient in vitamin D and haven’t been since milk fortification was begun. The average American’s serum 25-D levels were normal, above 20 ng/ml and Canadian’s had average levels around 24 ng/ml, also normal, from a 2009 Institute of Medicine report. An increased risk of fractures has not been observed at these levels. [4]
Lack of sunlight is not a problem either, according to the research by Dr. James Norman. He has put together a database of over 10,000 patients with hyper-para-thyroidism from around the world who live under a wide range of sunlight conditions. Their vitamin 25-D levels average 19.4 ng/ml, but their active hormone, 1-25 D levels and calcium levels are very high no matter where they live. As soon as their para-thyroid tumor is removed their bodies’ 25-D and 1-25 D balance normalize, no matter where they live.
Dr. Norman, does not recommend supplementing with vitamin D. The supplements push the patient’s lab values for 1-25 D and calcium even higher. He has multiple case examples where stroke or sudden illness occurred after vitamin D supplementation was begun by the patient’s endocrinologist. His seminar about it is on Youtube, listed under ParaThyroid TV, and is posted on my webpage.
I recently started working at an assisted living facility and many of the residents were started on high doses of vitamin D by their individual doctors about a year ago when this research was first getting popular. I read charts cover to cover – and I saw their quality of life deteriorate, their pain levels increase, and worsening of their weakness, cardiac symptoms and dementia, and one death. High doses of vitamin D may not be safe for unhealthy people.
Our public health initiatives have been successful at preventing rickets in the majority; we already won the battle against vitamin D deficiency. Many foods are now fortified with vitamin D not just milk. I met about 4000 babies in fifteen years as a WIC dietitian and only one showed early symptoms of rickets. He was exclusively breast fed and he and his mother both had severe milk protein allergies. They both took to sardines which are an excellent natural source of vitamin D, and supplements were never even needed for the little boy.
We are not vitamin D deficient but we do have a sub-population of chronically ill and obese people with depressed levels of the inactive form of the vitamin. The inactive vitamin Dᴣ is being activated at an unlimited rate in some cancer cells and by white blood cells in wound and inflammatory conditions, resulting in elevated levels of the active hormone form.
Increased levels of the active hormone cause movement of calcium and magnesium out of the bone which eventually leads to osteoporosis of the bone and calcification of everything else. It increases intestinal absorption of calcium and it can increase levels of cortisol, the stress hormone. [39] Too much cortisol can increase abdominal weight gain but it also acts like corticosteroid drugs on the immune system.
Activated hormone D leads to increased cortisol and a short term reduction in inflammatory symptoms because it kills off the overactive white blood cells. However it also kills off the healthy ones. Mega doses of vitamin D are being used in a way similar to corticosteroids. Ultimately the immune system is functioning even worse. The current increase in allergic sensitivities to foods like gluten and peanut butter is due to the over active white blood cells. If we kill off the white blood cells then we won’t get the allergic symptoms as bad but we may get more colds, skin infections, and other illnesses.
Mega-dosing with vitamin D is like paying for Prednisone, if we’re sick and for an expensive cholesterol supplement if we’re healthy. 
Vitamin D is actually a very powerful steroidal hormone based on cholesterol. The average American is making enough vitamin D from their stored cholesterol. Vitamin D is an expensive cholesterol supplement if you don’t need it.[1]  If you are worried about whether you need a supplement or currently are supplementing with vitamin D, then ask your medical provider for both lab tests, cheap and expensive, 25 hydroxy D and 1, 25 dihydroxy D.  The good news is that the combined test result comparison will serve as a biomarker to show who does have chronic inflammatory conditions – proving that fibromyalgia isn’t all in our heads.
Low levels of 25-D combined with high levels of 1,25 D is an abnormal balance that is not seen in the healthy person with good kidney control.It occurs due to the increased production of the activating enzyme in the cancer cells or infected cells. Autoimmune disease may be due to a variety of chronic infections that are not readily identifiable by today’s standard lab tests.
Excessive levels of the active vitamin D cause the bone to lose calcium and magnesium. Too much calcium can cause muscle cramps, increase pain, and can cause anxiety, irritability and headaches.
We need less calcium then we are getting on average and more magnesium. If we limit our intake to 800 mg calcium we should absorb magnesium better, but we still need about twice as much magnesium as we are currently getting. Nuts, beans, seeds and greens are all excellent sources of magnesium and so is chocolate. Just two and a half dairy servings per day, about what is recommended already, would provide adequate calcium for strong bones without overloading our intestines. Too much calcium is causing magnesium to be poorly absorbed in the intestines and to be wasted in urinary losses.
Magnesium blocks calcium channels in cell membranes and would protect the brain cells from being over-flooded with calcium and being overworked to the point of cell death. The over-excitation of the brain cells causes anxiety and irritability and may be underlying the increase in rates of bullying and violence. PMS is another name for magnesium deficiency that is associated with excessive irritiability and chocolate cravings (a good source of magnesium).
Magnesium provides power inside of the cell – fatigue is a common symptom of magnesium deficiency. Anemia and edema are early symptoms of magnesium deficiency. It is essential for the growth of mature red and white blood cells in bone marrow. It is used by over 300 enzymes and it is essential for apoptosis – the mercy killing of infected and precancerous cells. Hypertension and increased serum cholesterol and insulin are also symptoms. If I were writing the books, then Metabolic Syndrome would be called magnesium deficiency and so would pre-eclampsia.
We can heal ourselves, if we learn how to feed ourselves better and repair the food supply and nutrient guidelines.I recommend stopping the push to supplement with vitamin D and calcium and instead I would encourage trying the DASH diet plan. It was a primary education tool that I used successfully to prevent pre-eclampsia reoccurrence in high risk women. The DASH diet provides a good supply of magnesium from the Bean, Nut and Seed food group. The plan has been found helpful for weight loss as well as reducing hypertension.
I propose ten steps for turning around our epidemic of chronic illness and obesity
  1.  Look for health in Food First, treating symptoms does not restore function.
  2. Increase Magnesium in water and other electrolyte beverages. Softened water adds salt to our daily intake and sucks magnesium from our bones.
  3.  Increase magnesium rich foods. They also give us fiber that builds a healthy glycocalyx lining and stronger immune system. Beans, nuts, seeds, greens, whole grains and chocolate are good sources and there is a little in everything else.
  4. Sub-populations need to be identified and informed about their individual nutrient needs, whether increased or decreased from the average person’s to promote optimal health and quality of life.
  5. Poor intestinal absorption of magnesium is part of the problem. We can deliver nutrients from other directions. Skin lotions and Epsom salt (MgSO4) baths are low budget, low risk and very effective methods. [35, 36, 37]
  6.  Nutrients can be delivered by inhalation in an aerosolized  form that would be safer than intravenous magnesium use. [30, 31]
  7.  Limit calcium intake – more is not better. We will retain more when we consume less. The research on strong bones and calcium supplements were for people whose native diet averaged 300 mg calcium per day – not our current RDA of 1000 mg.
  8. Don’t worry about D deficiency and if you are worried then ask for both tests, the inactive and active form of the most powerful hormone in our body.
  9. Ask your government representatives to support food labeling reform. Neotame and free amino acids may be causing migraines, seizures and lead to dementia.
  10. We need our Nutrient Guidelines – the math – checked by a multi-disciplinary team of scientists who use the numbers – food scientists, dietitians, and biochemists should be involved. The math makes our infant formulas and cafeteria menus and when it is wrong then we all suffer.
All nutrients are equally essential. Currently our food supply and health care messages are over-loaded with calcium and vitamin D and it is hurting us. Draining the magnesium from our bones is draining the energy and fluid from our cells and leaves us puffy and pale from anemia. Without magnesium we can’t grow proper blood cells and without healthy white blood cells we can’t protect ourselves from infections and we can’t breakdown decaying, pre-cancerous cells for normal recycling.
Cancer occurs from old cells mutating. Healthy white blood cells can kill the active cancer too. The Linus Pauling Institute successfully treats tumors with high doses of vitamin C. The Gerson Clinic successfully uses a raw foods approach and detoxification with coffee enemas Not too pretty sounding but chemotherapy isn’t pretty either. Why do we continue to hurt people with harsh chemicals when nature gave us what we need in whole foods and the potent herbs and spices. Cinnamon, oregano and rosemary have shown promise in chronic illness. Spice up your lives and enjoy.
Our bodies can do it, we just have to feed ourselves an absorbable balance of a wide variety of essential nutrients.

See Bibliography on the page with this title. I will continue to add to it as I get it organized .

Disclaimer: This information is provided for educational purposes within the guidelines of fair use. Please see an individual health care professional for individualized health care services. If you have questions or comments please contact me at: