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Sleeping! (calcium/magnesium ratio - hair analysis) (and no drugs)

Discussion in 'Sleep' started by Mary, Feb 26, 2018.

  1. Mary

    Mary Forum Support Assistant

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    @Countrygirl, @Gondwanaland, @Learner1 (I’m tagging you because I’ve corresponded with all of you re sleep), I’ve done several posts about sleep and think I have finally found the Holy Grail. It feels too good to be true but it’s been 3 weeks now. I recently had a hair analysis done which showed that my calcium/magnesium ratio was very badly skewed in favor of calcium, and it recommended I stop my calcium and vitamin D supplements, at least temporarily, which I did. And then on my own I added in more magnesium and switched it up so that I was taking all my magnesium at night - after dinner, before bed and in the middle of the night. And immediately I started sleeping better. The hair analysis report said that insomnia characterized by the ability to initially fall asleep but then to wake up and have trouble sleeping thereafter (which is me) is associated with magnesium deficiency. This was new information to me - why don’t doctors know this?!

    I was taking what I thought were adequate amounts of calcium and magnesium but doing a couple of things wrong. One, I was taking them together and didn’t realize that was not a good idea. Also, I now believe the magnesium supplement I was taking was an inferior product. In any event, it was too much calcium in relation to magnesium and I should have been taking the bulk of the magnesium at night.

    My levels of calcium and magnesium on the hair analysis were not that extreme - calcium was in the low-normal range, and my magnesium was at the bottom of the normal range. It would never go up. But the ratio was the problem.

    So I started taking 200 mg mag glycinate after dinner, 400 mg before bed and 200 to 400 mg more in the middle of the night. Yeah, that’s a lot and now I’m cutting back, but it worked. So last night I took 100 mg with dinner, 400 before bed and 200 middle of the night. I will probably cut it a little more, but am going slowly with this.

    However, my BP has gone up a bit and I’m starting to get more tired and achy and have added in a little calcium in the morning and that is helping. So it’s a balancing act.

    Also, I seem to need more phosphorous as well (refeeding syndrome). My phosphorous got depleted when I added in B1 and I think the same thing has happened with the magnesium..

    I don’t have easy access to nutritional testing. I’m going by symptoms and muscle testing but I am sleeping better than I have been in over 20 years.

    I was on first 0.5 mg and then 1 mg. lorazepam in the middle of the night for 10 years for sleep. I started tapering off of it 1-1/2 years ago after I learned that benzos are linked to Alzheimer’s, got completely off of it a year ago, and my sleep has been hellish ever since I started the taper a year and a half ago. And actually it was getting worse recently, instead of better. So this is like a miracle for me. I really didn’t know what to do. The doctors had no answers. But I was getting 3-4 hours of sleep a night and didn’t know how long I could go on that way. And I have a very low tolerance for drugs, which aren’t the answer anyways! I did try trazodone which helped a little at one time but left me tired and drugged, and Baclofen, which made me spacey but didn’t do much for my sleep.

    I’m also taking 5-htp, melatonin, glycine, inositol, niacin and l-theanine.

    My former doctor (who died a few years ago) used to do a hair analysis every year, but he never looked at the ratios, only the levels of minerals - he was extremely knowledgeable but didn’t know this.

    Here’s the on-line company I used to get the testing done, and I was very happy with them and their service: https://hairanalysisreport.com/order-hair-analysis/ - I ordered TEI Profile 2 which included a written analysis from Trace Elements, and a phone consult with the company Hair Analysis Report. It cost more to get the report with the analysis from TE but was so well worth it, I wouldn’t have been able to figure it out on my own. I selected testing done by Trace Elements lab because it’s the lab my doctor used.
     
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  2. Nine lives

    Nine lives

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    Funnily enough I have my consult tomorrow (with the same company). I used to have ratio like you but now magnesium is way ahead of calcium. I do take magnesium in the evening and I am probably overdoing it now. As you say ratios are important.I will see how consult goes tomorrow.
     
    Mary likes this.
  3. Mary

    Mary Forum Support Assistant

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    I'd be curious to see how it goes if you don't mind :nerd:
     
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  4. Learner1

    Learner1 Forum Support Assistant

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    @Mary Thanks for sharing! I'll look into this. Curious about your levels of K2, D, boron, strontium which interact with calcium too. Not sure if they'd make a difference.

    I'm sleeping better. But I'm taking all my mag malate in the morning and the Garden of Life Plant Based Calcium before bed.

    The thing them at makes the biggest difference for me is whether I remember to take 3g of citrulline or not. My doctor a d I are looking into nitric oxide and what I'm doing with it.
     
  5. Mary

    Mary Forum Support Assistant

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    I tried citrulline once or twice and didn't seem to do well with it, or at least it didn't do much for me as I recall. Does the citrulline help you sleep? Or?

    I also tried arginine for a few days over a year ago after someone on the board had amazing results with an arginine product, but after 2 or 3 days of it I got very tired and stopped it, and then figured out that it was lowering my cortisol too much. So I've stayed pretty much away from arginine ever since though I did try it a couple of times during the worst of my insomnia but it did nothing for me.

    I am starting to add back a little calcium in the morning - the opposite timing of you!

    Trace Elements did recommend I stop vitamin D, temporarily. My vitamin D level was just checked about 6 weeks ago and it was 66. I do take K2 and boron. I was taking strontium for quite awhile and recently stopped it. It gets pricey taking all this stuff!

    Have you tried the ornithine yet? (For the rest of you, ornithine helps detoxify ammonia so if your insomnia is due to ammonia, ornithine can help. It helped me a fair amount with sleep a long time ago but doesn't do anything for me now.)
     
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  6. Learner1

    Learner1 Forum Support Assistant

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    Yes, it helps me sleep. Without it, I don't sleep.
    I've had high ammonia in the past, but not so much now. The ornithine just arrived, so I'll be giving it a try. :nerd:
     
    Mary likes this.
  7. CFS_for_19_years

    CFS_for_19_years Hoarder of biscuits

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    I've found that Mg glycinate raises my BP. No other form of Mg does this to me. Just thought I'd mention it in case you were also affected in a similar way.
     
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  8. Learner1

    Learner1 Forum Support Assistant

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    It may not be the mag glycinate itself. Many common brands of magnesium are contaminated with arsenic. Arsenic can raise blood pressure.
     
    Mary likes this.
  9. Mary

    Mary Forum Support Assistant

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    Thank you! My BP has gone up and I could not figure it out! What kind of magnesium are you taking?
     
  10. Sundancer

    Sundancer Senior Member

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    many common brands...could you inform me about brands that do not have arsenic-contamination?
     
  11. Mary

    Mary Forum Support Assistant

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    You might be right, I still am taking the KAL magnesium glycinate which I learned, thanks to you, is contaminated with arsenic, per labdoor.com - but, @CFS_for_19_years says that mag glycinate is the only kind of magnesium that raises her BP and I'm sure other types of magnesium are contaminated with arsenic as well.

    I'm not saying that arsenic might not be a factor but there might be something else going on here peculiar to magnesium glycinate. I think for the length of time I've been taking it (3 weeks), it would be unusual for arsenic contamination to have such an effect so quickly. My recent hair analysis showed no problem with arsenic or any other heavy metal, and I've been taking Swanson's brand of mag glycinate for many years - though I believe it is not as effective as the KAL brand.

    Having said all this, I am going to find a different type of magnesium!
     
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  12. Binkie4

    Binkie4 Senior Member

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    I take ReMag, magnesium in liquid form. I mix it with something as it doesn't have a pleasant taste. Was told it was high quality but it's quite expensive. I bought it on the recommendation of a medical herbalist.
     
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  13. Learner1

    Learner1 Forum Support Assistant

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    I've gotten a bit gunshy after researching several brands of various magnesium products and finding they were all contaminated, including, at the time, every non-magnesium oxide product sold at Whole Foods and Vitamin Shoppe.

    The 3 brands I trust for magnesium are Thorne, Designs for Health, and Seeking Health.

    And besides being a carcinogen, arsenic is known to interfere with ATP production.
     
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  14. Sundancer

    Sundancer Senior Member

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    yes, I may go for thorne when my bottle is empty, i see they have magnesium bisglycinate as a powder, then I can make my own capsules

    yep, that makes it a double baddie...
     
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  15. liverock

    liverock Senior Member

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    @Mary
    Trace Elements have articles on all the major minerals including how they relate to other minerals by David Watts the owner.

    This is the one on Magnesium in which he defines type 2 insomnia, (where you keep waking up) as a MG deficiency, but type 1 insomnia (where you have trouble getting to sleep) as a Calcium deficiency. It looks like a careful balance is necessary.

    http://www.traceelements.com/Docs/The Nutritional Relationships of Magnesium.pdf
     
  16. Mary

    Mary Forum Support Assistant

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    Yeah, that was the most important piece of information I gleaned from the report. I had always wondered why I was able to fall asleep without too much trouble, but had so much trouble in the middle of the night. I wish doctors (all kinds - M.D.s, naturopaths, etc.) knew this instead of going on and on about sleep hygiene etc. It seems pretty basic but in all my years of trying to find a way to sleep, this is the first time I've come across this info.

    Thanks for posting this link, I just glanced at it quickly - it looks very informative! :thumbsup:
     
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  17. Nine lives

    Nine lives

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    Interesting, how my magnesium has climbed too high but again I need it for deep sleep. Funnily enough even with low calcium I do not have a problem with nodding off to start with. He thought some of the magnesium was bio-unavailable. This could be from other mineral imbalances or from a type of magnesium that does not agree with me. I was doing Epsom Salt baths every other day and 3 x Magnesium SRT. May change to Magnesium Chloride baths. I also was showing a little arsenic so this could be associated with one of the sources of magnesium.
     
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  18. Mary

    Mary Forum Support Assistant

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    Thanks for the update, @Nine lives - what is Magnesium SRT?
     
  19. Nine lives

    Nine lives

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    Jigsaw Magnesium SRT (Sustained Release) - I thought it had been working OK. Nevertheless I will change the bath salts from Epsom salts to chloride first!
     
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  20. CFS_for_19_years

    CFS_for_19_years Hoarder of biscuits

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    I took Mg glycinate from BulkSupplements.com, based in Nevada. It raised my BP right away and my BP returned to normal as soon as I stopped taking it.

    I take two types of Magnesium: Mg oxide and a time-released Mg lactate called Mag-Tab SR.

    For a cheap source of Mg oxide I've been taking Swanson Magnesium Complex, but now that I've looked at the Labdoor report that says...ahem...it's high in arsenic :jaw-drop:, I'll probably switch to one of their top-rated products, Life Extension Magnesium Caps.
    For Labdoor's report on Mg supplements, see https://labdoor.com/rankings/magnesium
    You can check the ones at the top of the list for their individual purity reports.

    In addition to Mg oxide I take Mag-Tab Sr: https://magtabsr.com
    If I miss taking one or two doses of Mag-Tab SR I get a cramp in my left calf from an old tendon injury. As soon as I resume a few doses of Mag-Tab Sr the cramp goes away.

    There are cheap sources of immediate-release magnesium lactate available, but their peak absorption would start to dissipate after two hours and now I wouldn't trust most brands unless I saw a purity report.

    How/why did I decide to take these two forms of magnesium? I relied on information from the late director of the Magnesium Research Laboratory, Dr. Herbert Mansmann, MD. See my previous posts about his recommendations for pharmaceutical-grade (i.e. hopefully fewer heavy metals) products:
    http://forums.phoenixrising.me/inde...m-cofactors-for-absorption.57731/#post-955913
    http://forums.phoenixrising.me/inde...m-cofactors-for-absorption.57731/#post-955914
     
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