Osteoporosis & Magnesium – Research

A picture of a healthy bone and a bone affected by osteoporosisAlthough not exclusively, osteoporosis is mostly associated with the menopause and the changes that happen to the bone with age. There is growing evidence that osteoporosis is influenced by the levels of calcium, vitamin D, fluoride, phosphorus, magnesium, as well as trace minerals, such as copper (Cu), zinc (Zn) and manganese (Mn) which are essential co-factors in bone metabolism enzymes.

Magnesium plays a crucial role in bone metabolism by regulating active calcium transport. As a result, there has been high interest in the role of magnesium (Mg) in bone metabolism and its role in preventing osteoporosis. One of the studies conducted on post-menopausal women given magnesium hydroxide to measure the effect of magnesium on bone density has concluded that “at the end of the 2-year study, magnesium therapy appears to have prevented fractures and resulted in a significant increase in bone density“. Sojka-JE; Weaver-CM, Nutr-Rev. 1995 Mar; 53(3): 71-4 http://www.mdschoice.com/text/abstracts/Magnesium/magosteo.htm


Dr Lewis B. Barnett, a retired orthopaedic (bone) surgeon living in Center, Colorado, has a theory that takes into account and explains why magnesium plays a decisive role in the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis.

“The mechanism whereby magnesium functions to strengthen bone and combat osteoporosis is, like many functions of the body, quite complex,” Dr Barnett explained. “Our studies, however, have convinced us that the mineral is important-perhaps the most important single element in bone health.

The theory behind it is that magnesium is needed, by the pituitary gland. This gland regulates all the other glands of the body, and to do this regulating it uses magnesium. This mineral acts as a sedative, counteracting the stimulant effect of the adrenal glands. These glands must be restrained in their production, or else their secretions will speed up the breaking down and resorption of bone tissue.” http://www.mgwater.com/rod15.shtml

Another function of magnesium is to act as an enzyme or catalyst. In effect, it acts as the glue that binds calcium and fluorine to build bone. Thus, even though calcium and fluorine may be abundant in the diet, they cannot be used and are flushed out of the system unless the binding element, magnesium, is also present.”

Barnett analyzed the soil and water content of the two areas and concluded the major factor in bone health was the mineral content of the water supply. Analysis of the water showed that calcium alone could not be the element responsible for combating osteoporosis. The Hereford water contained only four parts per million of calcium while the Dallas water contained 23 p.p.m. There were only slight differences in the fluorine, iodine, and phosphorus content of the water. Barnett considered these differences statistically insignificant.

The one really outstanding difference was in the magnesium content of the two water supplies. The Dallas supply contained eight p.p.m. of the mineral, while the Hereford water contained 16 p.p.m.”


“Many researchers are now also reporting that magnesium deficiency plays a significant role in the development of osteoporosis. Studies have shown that women suffering from osteoporosis tend to have a lower magnesium intake than normal and also have lower levels of magnesium in their bones. It is also clear that recommendations to postmenopausal women to increase calcium intake can lead to an unfavourable Ca:Mg ratio unless the magnesium intake is increased accordingly; the optimum ratio of Ca:Mg is believed to be 2:1. A magnesium deficiency can also affect the production of the biologically active form of vitamin D and thereby further promoting osteoporosis. Some very recent research shows that magnesium supplementation is effective in treating osteoporosis. A trial in Israel showed that postmenopausal women suffering from osteoporosis could stop further bone loss by supplementing with 250-750 mg/day of magnesium for two years. Some (8 per cent) of the treated women even experienced a significant increase in trabecular bone density. Untreated controls lost bone mass at the rate of 1 per cent per year. Another experiment in Czechoslovakia found that 65 per cent of women who supplemented with 1500 to 3000 mg of magnesium lactate daily for two years completely got rid of their pain and stopped further development of deformities of the vertebrae. Other studies have shown that magnesium is helpful in the treatment of cardiac arrhythmias and that an adequate intake may help prevent atherosclerosis. Dreosti, Ivor E. Magnesium status and health. Nutrition Reviews, Vol. 53, No. 9, September 1995, pp. S23- S27 “. http://www.nutritionalmagnesium.org/health/womens-health/34-magnesium-supplements-help-osteoporosis.html

In conclusion, although magnesium undoubtedly plays a major role in preventing and treating osteoporosis, its supplementation should go along with other minerals and vitamins, as well as healthy diet and exercise, for a balanced and productive response of the body systems to the treatment.


Oral supplementation is the method used by most people, with varying effect. The problem is that if the digestive system of a person is impaired, then much of the oral magnesium passes through the body unabsorbed. A sufficient increase may lead to loosening of the stool and even diarrhoea, and this may further prevent efficient absorption of magnesium.

Transdermal supplementation has been proved to be by far the quickest and most efficient method which can be used both at home and at clinics, without having to resort to intravenous injections. The skin is the largest organ in the body with a wonderful ability to absorb certain substances, including magnesium ions, by osmosis.


  • Magnesium oil massage – massage the oil into the body, 3-4 times a week, or daily.
  • Magnesium oil spray – spray neat oil, or mixed with water in 1:1 or 1:2 ratio is too strong and feeling itchy, every day, before bedtime.
  • Magnesium bath – add 500g of magnesium chloride flakes or Epsom salt into a bath. Take daily, before bedtime.
  • Foot bath – add 250g of flakes into a foot bath, take daily. This provides a more localised action but is still quite effective.
  • Far-Infrared Magnesium Wrap – apply magnesium oil on the body, wrap yourself up in a warm wet sheet, then get into a warmed-up Far-Infrared blanket on medium setting for about 45 minutes.

Always check with your medical doctor for any supplementation – oral or transdermal, since certain conditions and medications would mean exercising caution in this respect.

Links & Information:

1. Where can I buy magnesium products? – http://www.saltsclaysminerals.com

2. Learn more about and book Far Infrared Magnesium (and other minerals wrap treatments in London, UK http://www.purenaturecures.com

3. Learn more about and book the TRAINING (online and/or in person) to be able to do the treatment on yourself and customers – http://www.courses.purenaturecures.com

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