Magnesium: The Super-Mineral

Magnesium can stop an asthma attack, pull toxins out of the body, increase circulation, remove age spots, decrease joint pain and relieve constipation.

It is the eighth most plentiful element on the planet and the fourth most abundant mineral in the body.

It is essential for a very wide gamut of critical body functions, affecting virtually every organ system. 

Why Is Magnesium Important in Developmental Delays? 

This mineral is directly responsible for over 300 biochemical bodily reactions, many of which have gone awry in individuals with autism, attention issues, Sensory Processing Disorder and other developmental delays.

It is extremely important in the metabolism of fellow elements: cadmium, calcium, copper, iron, phosphorus, potassium, lead, sulfur and zinc.

It is the single most important mineral for maintaining proper electrical balance and facilitating smooth metabolism in the cells.

One of the major properties of it is that of stabilizing cell membranes.

The health status of the digestive system and the kidneys significantly influence its status, as it is absorbed in the intestines and then transported through the blood to cells and tissues. 

Signs of Deficiency 

Below are common signs of deficiency: 

Because in certain forms this mineral is not easily absorbed and because no classical symptoms exist that point to its causal role in disease, the problem of deficiency is very readily masked.

Ask your doctor to confirm your suspicions with blood and/or urine testing. 

Magnesium deficiency is most likely in those who eat many processed foods, over cook foods and drink soft water.

Deficiencies can develop when elimination is increased by taking medications and products such as:

  • Diuretics
  • Birth control
  • Corticosteroids
  • Anti-psychotics
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine
  • Sugar

Colicky babies may also be deficient because their stressed hormones trigger the excretion of greater than normal levels of magnesium in their urine. 

Before seeking out a medical diagnosis, think “magnesium deficiency.”

Instead of reaching for asthma medication, arthritis drugs or a laxative, try some magnesium, the super mineral.

Corrective Steps 

Eat High-Density Foods

Foods high in magnesium are:

  • Avocados
  • Beans
  • Molasses
  • Almonds
  • Brazil nuts
  • Cashews
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Whole grains
  • Fish
  • Kiwis
  • Leafy greens, especially spinach

Organic versions of these foods, especially produce, typically have higher levels of this and other minerals.

Supplement Orally

Magnesium citrate and magnesium glycinate are two of the best absorbed forms when taken orally.

Read labels carefully, always looking for the number of milligrams of elemental magnesium in the tablet or capsule.

In the late 1960s, Dr. Bernard Rimland showed the beneficial effects of supplemental magnesium given along with vitamin B6 to improve its absorption in individuals with autism.

Recommended daily allowance (RDA) is four milligrams of magnesium daily per pound of body weight (e.g., 160 mg for a 40-pound child).

Magnesium metabolism has a quirk: if levels are low enough to cause symptoms, the deficiency can cause the body to lose its ability to use what it takes in orally.

Only a third to a half of dietary magnesium is absorbed into the body.

Furthermore, the gut has a low tolerance for magnesium, especially magnesium citrate.

Diarrhea is often the outcome before sufficient amounts can be ingested.

Supplement Transdermally

Bypassing the digestive tract with transdermal bath salts or creams can solve the problem with oral ingestion. 

Bath Salts

Epsom salts, which are magnesium sulfate, can help both with magnesium supplementation and with sulfation.

Their tendency to dry out and become “powdery” on the skin may limit absorption.

Pour one cup of Epsom salts into a tub of warm water, soaking for approximately 30 minutes per day.

Magnesium chloride bath flakes, also known as Dead Sea salts, are hydroscopic, meaning they attract water, thus staying wet on the skin, where they are more likely to be absorbed.

Magnesium Oil

Magnesium oil delivers high levels of magnesium directly through the skin to the cellular level, bypassing common intestinal and kidney symptoms sometimes associated with oral use.

This oil feels “oily” on the skin, but it can also be very itchy, so test on a small area of skin first.

The biggest benefit of topical magnesium chloride administration is that the intestines are not adversely impacted.

Magnesium Gel

Magnesium gel is magnesium chloride in an all natural, polysaccharide gelling agent that can retain its qualities in hot or cold conditions, and it has almost unlimited shelf-life stability.

It has a rich, luxurious feel, slides like silk and is great for holding the mineral on the skin while the body drinks up the magnesium.

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Related Pages


Attention Deficit Disorders (ADD & ADHD)

Autism Spectrum Disorder

Breathing Difficulties


Constipation and Diarrhea

Developmental Delays

Essential Nutrients

Sensory Processing Disorder

Sleep Issues

Supplement Checklist


Dean, Carolyn, MD ND. “The Magnesium Miracle: Discover the Missing Link to Total Health“.