Proton pump inhibitors and magnesium deficiency

Proton-pump inhibitors; many wheelchair users use them and many of us use them even for years. That’s unfortunately not without risk. The reason that they are prescribed is usually the lack of real knowledge about nutrition and lifestyle medicine (that is very new and unknown territory in the first place for the vast majority of doctors and healthcare providers in the Netherlands) and certainly not in the area of paraplegia / wheelchair bound living & nutrition.

That is why the cause is most of the time not addressed, but the symptoms are treated with proton pump inhibitors. It is, in off cousre not all, but a lot of cases, an approach of ‘keeping the holes plugged’ and does not solve anything. Unfortunately, proton pump inhibitors do quite frankly in most cases nothing else for you than make your problem worse over time. On page. 96 of The Sit Smart Diet you can read why:

Magnesium deficiency is a common deficiency in people with paraplegia / wheelchair bound existence – almost everyone suffers from it. That is dangerous, certainly in the long term, because magnesium is very important to us. This mineral is indispensable for energy production, functioning and nerves, relaxation of muscles (spasms, muscle cramps), good sleep and for the maintenance of strong bones (Ilich JZ, Kerstetter JE. J Am Coll Nutr 2000).

Low magnesium levels are associated with insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes.

Low magnesium levels are also associated with insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease and stroke (Uwe Gröber et al. Nutrients. Sept. 2015). It has been shown that magnesium helps in the treatment of both acute and chronic pain (Srebro D et al. Curr Med Chem. Dec. 2016). Magnesium deficiency often manifests itself by cramping in the muscles and fatigue.

Magnesium is well absorbed from food. Fiber-rich food such as (green!) Vegetables and nuts and seeds (especially almonds) is a rich source. However, magnesium intake from food often appears to be too low (Douban S et al. Am Heart J. 1996).

Spinal Cord Injury, Proton Pump Inhibitors and Magnesium Defeciency

And this is the important point:

In addition, certain medicines lower the magnesium level. For example, different types of antibiotics can inhibit the uptake (Seelig MS. J Am Coll Nutr. 1982). Prolonged use of diuretics or proton pump inhibitorss can, apart from B12 defiency,  also lead to a magnesium deficiency (Ryan MP. Am J Med 1987; Cundy T et al. Clin Endocrinol (Oxf) 2008; Doornebal J et al. Ned Tijdschr Geneeskd 2009).

So, are you on proton pump inhibitors? Then make sure you eat enough (green!) vegetables (or drink green smoothies), eat almonds and preferably take a magnesium supplement. You usually do not get too much, but rather too little magnesium. Again: magnesium intake from food often turns out to be too low (Douban S et al. Am Heart J. 1996).

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