Magnesium (Mg++) is an essential nutrient that the human body needs to get from outside sources-we cannot manufacture it. Mg++ is involved in over 300 enzyme-driven biochemical reactions in the body, including basic cellular function. Mg is involved in energy metabolism and transport, muscle contraction, DNA and RNA synthesis, glucose use, nerve transmission, bone density, regulation of detox pathways, and a healthy nervous and cardiovascular system. Unfortunately, the World Health Organization estimates that nearly 70% of Americans are deficient in this mineral, and medications, including over-the-counter drugs, rob the body of Mg++. Examples of drugs that rob the body of Mg++ are:

Acid blockers like Tagamet, Pepcid, Prilosec, and Zantac.

Antacids like Tums and Alka-Seltzer.

Antibiotics and Antivirals.

Central Nervous System Stimulants like Ritalin.

Corticosteroids such as Prednisone, Hydrocortisone, Dexamethasone, Flonase, and others.


Hormone Replacement Therapy: Estradiol, Estrogen, and birth control drugs.

For a more complete list, refer to Life Extension magazine, 2/15.

Another article in Life Extension magazine, 2/15, expounds upon the medicinal qualities of the herb, Sage. Sage contains a wide array of bioactive compounds, both in it’s essential oil, and the leaves. Particular among these are flavones. These flavones exert various pharmacological effects, including anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and anticancer activities. Research published in the Journal of Clinical Pharmacy and Therapeutics showed that sage improved cognition in subjects with Alzheimer’s, as well as in healthy participants. A study published in the Journal Neuropsychopharmacology (wow, long word!) reported enhanced mood and alertness. A 2013 study reported in the Journal of Ethnopharmacolgy found that sage inhibits an inflammatory protein called NF-kB, that is chronically active in many inflammatory diseases ranging from atherosclerosis to bowel disease. Sage has also been shown to improve lipid profiles and better glucose levels in type 2 diabetics. And, in traditional folk medicine, sage has long been used to decrease menopausal hot flashes and sweating. To get sage into your diet, add it to tomato sauce, omelets, frittatas and pizza. I add it to my soups and stews, casseroles are another option. When cooking with it, it’s best to add it near the end of the cooking process. I prefer fresh Sage leaves, but you must use them within a week.

Stay well, John R Blilie, M.S.