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Magnesium and Autism

     Research published in the American Journal of Epidemiology in 2002 shows that when the diets of 2,566 children ages 11-19 were studied, less than 14 percent of boys and 12 percent of girls had adequate intakes of magnesium and low magnesium intake was associated with lower measures of several lung functions (including lung capacity and airway flow).[2]

     "Magnesium deficiency definitely accentuates the allergic situation," says Terry M. Phillips, D.Sc., Ph.D., director of the immunogenetics and immunochemistry laboratory at George Washington University Medical Center in Washington, D.C., and author of Winning the War Within. Thus we can extrapolate that magnesium deficiency can provoke the well known leaky gut syndrome, which we will discuss below.

     The Department of Family Medicine, Pomeranian Medical Academy, states that dietetic factors can play a significant role in the origin of ADHD and that magnesium deficiency can result in disruptive behaviors.[3] When dealing with autism spectrum and other neurological disorders in children it is important to know the signs of low magnesium: restless, can't keep still, body rocking, grinding teeth, hiccups, noise sensitive, poor attention span, poor concentration, irritable, aggressive, ready to explode, easily stressed.

     When it comes to our children we need to assume a large magnesium deficiency for several reasons. 1) The foods they are eating are stripped of magnesium because foods in general are declining in mineral content in an alarming way. 2) The foods many children eat are highly processed junk foods that do not provide real nutrition to the body. 3) Because most children on the spectrum are not absorbing the minerals they need even when present in the gut. Magnesium absorption is dependent on intestinal health, which is compromised in leaky gut syndromes that the majority of autistic children suffer from. 4) Because the oral supplements doctors rely on are not easily absorbed, because they are not in the right form and because magnesium in general is not administered easily orally.


     Leaky gut syndrome causes a long list of mineral deficiencies. The carrier proteins responsible for transporting various minerals into the bloodstream are damaged by the swelling and inflammation of leaky gut syndrome, something akin to allergies in the gut. It doesn't matter how much magnesium you take when the carrier protein is damaged, magnesium will not get into the body where it is needed. The body can also be deprived of zinc, copper, calcium, silicon and a wide variety of micro-nutrients. Leaky gut syndrome can also block the absorption of vitamins and essential amino acids, severely hindering nutrient uptake.

     Leaky gut syndrome is the result of intestinal inflammation, which causes the spaces between the cell walls to enlarge. It is a condition in which the intestinal lining is more permeable than normal due to abnormally large spaces or "holes" between the cells of an inflamed intestinal lining. It can be caused and aggravated by a number of things such as over use of antibiotics, parasites, excessive consumption of sugar and refined carbohydrates, birth control pills, aspirin, mercury and other heavy metal poisoning and vaccines. Leaky gut syndrome is not often recognized by physicians and the medical authorities are busy lynching Dr. Wakefield and colleagues for their work suggesting that the MMR vaccine is one of the principle causes of leaky gut syndrome.

     A double-blind administration of 200 mg elemental magnesium per day to 25 children produced measurable decrease in hyperactivity over 6 months compared to control.[4] A case can easily be made that substitutes what allopathic medicine considers background genetic disposition for nutritional deficiencies. According to Dr. Ellen Grant, nearly all the autistic children tested at Biolab had zinc, copper, SODase and magnesium deficiencies. We know that mercury displaces essential elements like magnesium, selenium, zinc and copper from cells causing disruptions of enzyme systems in the process. So we can expect, when we correct nutritional deficiencies, that we will see a reversal in symptoms.

Magnesium deficiency measured in 95% of 116 Polish children
with ADHD: 78% low hair, 59% low RBC's, 34% low serum.[5]

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Mark Sircus Ac., OMD
Director International Medical Veritas Association

Special Note: When we really look hard at the fact that less than 14 percent of boys and 12 percent of girls had adequate intakes of magnesium we have to concede that contemporary medicine is built on quicksand. Meaning its basic premises are without foundation. It does not take much mathematical intelligence to assume that healthy children would be the most magnesium replete and that the more severe the decline and deficiency the worse neurological symptoms and behavior will be. Magnesium deficiency is the root cause of many diseases in children. That does not say that other mineral and vitamin deficiencies will also not be causes nor does it take anything away from the tragedy of the chemical, heavy metal and radiation exposure that our children have to suffer through.



[2] Gilliland, F.D. et al. Dietary magnesium, potassium, sodium and children's lung function. American Journal of Epidemiology . 2002; 155: 125-131.

[3] The effects of magnesium physiological supplementation on hyperactivity in children with ADHD. Mag Res 1997; 10(2):149-56.

[4] Magnesium Research 10(2): 149-156 1997

[5] Magnesium Research 10(2): 143-148 1997

Legal Notice:The Author specifically invokes the First Amendment rights of freedom of speech and of the press without prejudice. The information written is published for informational purposes only under the rights guaranteed by the First Amendment of the Constitution for the United States of America, and should not in any way be used as a substitute for the advice of a physician or other licensed health care practitioner. The statements contained herein have not been evaluated by the FDA. The products discussed herein are not intended to diagnose, cure, prevent or treat any disease. Images, text and logic are copyright protected. ALL rights are explicitly reserved without prejudice, and no part of this essay may be reproduced except by written consent. ©2009 by Mark Sircus