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Vitamin D and Magnesium: This is how they work together

Vitamin D and Magnesium: This is how they work together


Taking vitamin D and magnesium is important for health. But what should you pay attention to? Do they both work together?

There are different ways to do something for your health. For example, sports activities, conscious nutrition, adequate sleep as well as recovery periods. A US study recently revealed eight factors that are said to help people live longer.

But what are the effects of taking nutritional supplements? This text specifically addresses vitamin D, which is said to increase the chance of survival in cancer, and magnesium. You can find out how the two work together at the end of the article.

Vitamin D: what's behind it?

According to the Federal Ministry of Health he vitamin D” is the collective name for calciferols, a group of soluble solids Vitamins“When exposed to sunlight, the human body produces vitamin D. It is also found in foods such as fatty fish and offal, eggs, edible mushrooms and cod liver oil, but only in small quantities.

Robert Koch Institute (RKI) lists vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol) and vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) as the most important forms. Basically, vitamin D is involved in bone metabolism. Among other things, it promotes “absorption of calcium and phosphate from the intestines and their incorporation into bones.” It is also said to play a “key role in bone mineralization.”

According to the RKI, vitamin D also plays a role in “other metabolic processes, in the formation of proteins and in the control of a large number of genes.” 80 to 90 percent of the vitamin is produced by the body itself in the skin. Since this is caused by sunlight, you need to stay outside. The remaining 10 to 20 percent comes from your diet. By the way: a deficiency can lead to depressive mood.

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Magnesium: what's behind it?

The Federal Ministry of Health provides information on thisMagnesium is “important for the metabolism of muscles, nerves, and bones.” Unlike vitamin D, the body cannot produce magnesium itself, which is why it must be consumed through food. Pregnant and breastfeeding women, athletes and people with certain pre-existing diseases have an increased need.

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Magnesium according to Pete Karl Lauterbach (SPD) “Contains many plant foods.” Larger amounts can be found “in nuts, oilseeds, green vegetables, legumes and whole grains.”

Vitamin D: How does deficiency occur and what are its effects?

Especially in the northern regions, there is a lack of sunlight in the winter months to be able to absorb enough vitamin D. In this case, the RKI says that “UV-B radiation with wavelength from 290 nm to 315 nm is required” and that this “occurs year-round only in areas below latitude 35”.

In Germany, “body education is only possible from around March to October when you spend time outdoors.” In addition, “UV radiation can be reduced by more than 90% even in the summer months due to unfavorable weather conditions, for example when there is heavy cloud cover.”

Factors include “age, skin colour, body weight as well as the influences of modern lifestyle”. According to the RKI, vitamin D deficiency can also lead to “chronic gastrointestinal, liver, or kidney disease.” Medications such as antiepileptics or bladder depressants can also impair vitamin D metabolism.

According to the Federal Ministry of Health, the following symptoms could indicate vitamin D deficiency:

  • Bone pain
  • Bone deformities, especially of the ribs, legs, and spine
  • Shattered bones
  • Swelling at the junction of cartilage and bone
  • Lubricate the back of the head
  • Delayed fontanel closure in young children
  • Muscle weakness
  • Susceptibility to infection
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Video: Sat 1

Magnesium: How does its deficiency occur and what are its effects?

Magnesium deficiency can arise “as a result of an unbalanced diet or as a result of kidney disease,” writes the Federal Ministry of Health. Severe diarrhea can also be a trigger because even then there is a risk of not absorbing enough magnesium or excreting too much.

The human body has mechanisms that prevent it from excreting too much magnesium. However, due to a genetic defect, this regulatory mechanism does not work properly in a very small number of people, “for example in Gitelman syndrome – a rare genetic kidney disease.”

In addition, magnesium balance can also be negatively affected by diseases such as diabetes, pancreatitis, chronic intestinal diseases such as Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis, or thyroid diseases such as underactive parathyroid glands.

Magnesium preparations: Here too attention should be paid to the dosage.

Photography: Jörg Carstensen, DPA (symbolic image)

According to the Federal Ministry of Health, magnesium deficiency can also be due to high alcohol consumption. There is also an increased need due to stress, exercise or pregnancy.

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Symptoms often only appear when the deficiency is severe. In addition, the symptoms are not always clear and can also be interpreted as “signs of other diseases.” Piet Lauterbach lists the following symptoms:

  • Muscle cramps, tingling or numbness in the arms and legs
  • Hypothermia and frequent freezing
  • headache
  • Heart racing
  • Arrhythmia
  • Digestive system problems

Vitamin D and Magnesium: How do they work together?

As the German Nutrition Society (DGE) reported when asked, vitamin D mainly supports the absorption of magnesium in the intestine. It is also true that adequate vitamin D level can improve magnesium absorption. However, it is emphasized that: “In our opinion, this is no reason to take food supplements containing these nutrients without reservation.”

The importance of vitamin D for magnesium homeostasis (balance in the body) is unclear. Some studies indicate that eating it externally – that is, from the outside – increases the rate of absorption of magnesium. In addition, vitamin D intake appears to be associated with increased excretion (via the kidneys). Therefore, it cannot be said with certainty whether magnesium balance is positively affected.

There is a warning against excessive intake of vitamin D and magnesium through nutritional supplements. If reference values ​​are exceeded, this may have negative effects. For vitamin D, the daily requirement is 20 micrograms per day. Regarding magnesium, the reference value increases With increasing age: from 24 milligrams per day in the first four months to 80 milligrams per day up to the age of one year, and from the age of 10 onwards with differences for girls and boys, from the age of 19 onwards finally 350 milligrams per day for men and 300 mg per day. Milligrams for women.

According to the DGE, medication or illness can also affect the interaction of vitamin D and magnesium, although it is recommended to contact a nutritionist. It is emphasized that taking medications and nutritional supplements at the same time should generally be avoided. A safe distance of at least one to two hours must be maintained.