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Magnesium, inflammation, and obesity in chronic disease

Authors

  • Forrest H Nielsen

    Corresponding author
    1. US Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Grand Forks Human Nutrition Research Center, Grand Forks, North Dakota, USA
      FH Nielsen, USDA, ARS, Grand Forks Human Nutrition Research Center, 2420 2 Avenue N Stop 9034, Grand Forks, ND 58202-9034, USA. E-mail: forrest.nielsen@ars.usda.gov, Phone: +1-701-795-8455, Fax: +1-701-7950-8240.
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FH Nielsen, USDA, ARS, Grand Forks Human Nutrition Research Center, 2420 2 Avenue N Stop 9034, Grand Forks, ND 58202-9034, USA. E-mail: forrest.nielsen@ars.usda.gov, Phone: +1-701-795-8455, Fax: +1-701-7950-8240.

Abstract

About 60% of adults in the United States do not consume the estimated average requirement for magnesium, but widespread pathological conditions attributed to magnesium deficiency have not been reported. Nevertheless, low magnesium status has been associated with numerous pathological conditions characterized as having a chronic inflammatory stress component. In humans, deficient magnesium intakes are mostly marginal to moderate (approximately 50% to <100% of the recommended dietary allowance). Animal experiments indicate that signs of marginal-to-moderate magnesium deficiency can be compensated or exacerbated by other factors influencing inflammatory and oxidative stress; recent studies suggest a similar happening in humans. This suggestion may have significance in obesity, which is characterized as having a chronic low-grade inflammation component and an increased incidence of a low magnesium status. Marginal-to-moderate magnesium deficiency through exacerbating chronic inflammatory stress may be contributing significantly to the occurrence of chronic diseases such as atherosclerosis, hypertension, osteoporosis, diabetes mellitus, and cancer.

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