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  • Jan Clementson

Immunity Focus: Magnesium the overlooked nutrient

We are coming to that time of year when coughs, colds and flu come into their own........and now we have covid to worry about. Will it or will it not rear its ugly head again this year in the flu season? By now, you are probably already contemplating your nutrient arsenal and how you can protect yourself. Vitamins C and D, zinc, garlic....check. You know the main ones, you've read about them many times. You probably already have these in your cupboard.

But what's this about magnesium? This is new. Why would that help with seasonal bugs? Well, for starters this is this is the micronutrient that is absolutely central to energy production. When you eat food your body transforms it into a biological energy currency called ATP (adenosine triphosphate) inside of your cells. It's this ATP molecule that powers every single cell, organ and system in your body.....including your immune cells. However, ATP needs to be activated in order to perform its functions. And it is magnesium that activates it by attaching to the ATP molecule. Thereby making magnesium key to fully charging your body and my NUMBER ONE go to supplement.

Now researchers at the University of Basel have recently discovered that magnesium is essential to the functioning of immune T-cells. These are one of the most important white blood cells of your immune system and play a central role in your response to infections and pathogens. This 2022 study shows that magnesium deficiency is associated with infections but high blood magnesium levels allow these T-cells to eliminate infected cells. So, if you want a highly effective immune system to protect you against infections this winter season, increasing your magnesium levels should be high on your priority list.

Focus on magnesium-rich foods to increase your levels. These include nuts (especially almonds, cashews, Brazil nuts), legumes (lentils, beans, peas), seeds (especially flax, pumpkin, chia), some fatty fish (salmon, mackerel, halibut), some vegetables (avocado, kale, spinach) and banana. And to add a little bit of luxury....dark chocolate.

You can also include a supplement to boost your levels. My recommended dosage is 300-400 mg/day. This is a safe level. My favourite supplement is Viridian's High Potency Magnesium. It's a good quality supplement at reasonable price and contains 300 mg per capsule. You can purchase this from my online distributor, Natural Dispensary, and use my discount code JCL010 to obtain a 10% discount. Here't the link:

Turn to the power of nutrients this winter to protect yourself from the bugs.

Reference: Lötscher J, Martí i Líndez AA, Kirchhammer N, et al. Magnesium sensing via LFA-1 regulates CD8+ T cell effector function. Cell. 2022. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2021.12.039


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