Inflammation plays a pivotal role in all stages of atherosclerosis, which is the progressive narrowing and hardening of the arteries over time.
Inflammation is the activation of the immune system in response to infection, irritation, or injury. Characterized by an influx of white blood cells, redness, heat, swelling, pain, and dysfunction of the organs involved, inflammation has different names when it appears in different parts of the body. Most allergy and asthma sufferers are familiar with rhinitis (inflammation of the nose), sinusitis (inflammation of the sinuses), and asthma (inflammation of the airways), but inflammation is also behind arthritis (inflammation of the joints), dermatitis (inflammation of the skin), and so on.
The inflammatory response can be acute or chronic. Acute inflammation typically lasts only a few days. This response usually promotes healing but, if uncontrolled, may become harmful.
The primary objective of acute inflammation is to localize and eradicate the irritant and repair the surrounding tissue but this completely changes in chronic low-grade inflammatory states. Chronic low-grade inflammation is one of the characteristics of the metabolic syndrome and interferes with insulin physiology. Ignorance has prevailed over the interrelationship between muscular lipid accumulation, chronic inflammation and insulin resistance because the central mediating factor is magnesium. It is magnesium that modulates cellular events involved in inflammation.
There are many factors that trigger inflammation. They are found in both our internal and external environments and include excessive levels of the hormone insulin (insulin resistance), emotional stress, environmental toxins (heavy metals), free-radical damage, viral, bacterial, fungal other pathogenic infections, obesity, overconsumption of hydrogenated oils, periodontal disease, radiation exposure, smoking, spirochetes such as the Borrelia that causes Lyme disease, and certain pharmacological drugs. Problems with insulin metabolism are a major contributor to cardiovascular disease. It results in the inability to properly store magnesium, causing blood vessels to constrict, elevated blood pressure, and coronary arterial spasm, all of which can result in a heart attack.
Excess insulin causes retention of sodium, fluid retention, elevated blood pressure and congestive heart failure.– Dr. Ron Rosedale
Inflammatory reactions in the body are a valuable predictor of impending heart attack. Dr. Robert Genko, editor of the American Academy of Periodontal Journal, claims that persons with gingival disease (which is an inflammatory disorder) are 27 times more likely to suffer a heart attack than are persons with healthy gums. An American Heart Association paper disclosed that 85% of heart attack victims had gum disease compared to 29% of healthy similar patients.
When magnesium levels fall researchers note a profound increase of inflammatory cytokines present, along with increased levels of histamine.
Magnesium deficiency causes and underpins chronic inflammatory build ups.This concept is intriguing because it suggests a fundamentally simpler way of warding off disease. Instead of different treatments for heart disease, Alzheimer’s and colon cancer, we apply a single, inflammation-reducing remedy that would prevent or treat these and other deadly diseases. The key words here are ‘prevent’ or ‘treat’ but please notice the word is not cure. Though magnesium is a cure for many of our ailments full treatment protocols are recommended with magnesium chloride as the top protocol item. It is a protocol of basic items like magnesium, iodine, Alpha Lipoic Acid, sodium bicarbonate, sodium thiosulfate, whole food vitamin C, natural vitamin D from the sun, spirulina and some other important items like purified water that will make a difference in a host of chronic diseases.
Once we understand the critical importance of inflammation and glutathione depletion in brain diseases, we can take steps to prevent or even reverse the damage.– Dr. David Perlmutter
Inflammation and systemic stress are central attributes of many pathological conditions. In magnesium we have found a potent medicinal that is effective across a wide range of pathologies. Pharmaceutical companies need look no further then the sea shore, which contains millions of tons of magnesium chloride the perfect anti-inflammatory agent.
Is your heart on fire?– New York Times
It could very well be but we most likely will not know it until we suddenly have cardiac arrest. Researchers recognize a silent kind of inflammation. This type of internal inflammation has an insidious nature and is the culprit behind diabetes and heart disease. The chronic and continuous low-level stress that silent inflammation places on the body’s defense systems often results in an immune-system breakdown. Magnesium deficiency is a parallel silent insult happening at the core of our physiology. Magnesium deficiencies feed the fires of inflammation and pain.
Epidemiologic studies have shown an inverse relationship between magnesium in the drinking water and cardiovascular mortality,. This association between magnesium in drinking water and ischemic heart disease was reconfirmed in a major review of the literature done by epidemiologists at Johns Hopkins University. Since most heart disease is marked by various levels of inflammation these studies were all highlighting the hidden relationship between inflammation and magnesium deficiency.
Another reason that chronic inflammations can take us into the hell fires of pain is that magnesium gets depleted in conditions of inflammation.
Beyond all the common symptoms of inflammation we find the body tissues themselves may lose their ability to recognize cells that are “self ” from those that are not, and the body may mistakenly identify its own cells as foreign invaders. This internal programming error then continues to trigger and retrigger immune responses, setting the stage for autoimmune diseases, such as lupus, multiple sclerosis, and scleroderma. The result is cellular chaos, and what is even more disturbing is that this process may be happening year after year without our even being aware of it.
This chronic inflammatory response breaks down healthy tissue in a misdirected attempt at repair and healing.
Doctors who specialize in rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, lupus and other autoimmune disorders are very familiar with what happens when the body goes to war with itself. These diseases demonstrate a direct inflammatory attack against healthy cells in such places as the joints, nerves and connective tissue.
Magnesium is central to immunocompetence and plays a crucial role in natural and adaptive immunity.
Alzheimer’s patients who were already taking anti-inflammatory drugs for arthritis or heart disease tend to develop the disorder later than those who weren’t.
Atherosclerosis is caused by chronic inflammation, which often begins very early in life. The big dispute among experts is what causes the inflammation in the first place. One theory holds that bacteria and viruses may cause this inflammation but clearly we know that lead, mercury, monosodium glutamate (MSG) and fluoride and other toxic chemicals can also cause inflammatory reactions in blood vessels.
Recent advances in the field of cardiovascular medicine have emphasized the involvement of inflammation in the formation of atherosclerotic plaque.
This chapter represents basic research into the nature of inflammation. It looks beyond the pharmaceutical companies; beyond aspirin and other multipurpose experimental drugs that block inflammation, but not without collateral damages. Magnesium is at the heart of the inflammatory process, it is the prime first cause when it is not present in sufficient quantities. Increases in extracellular magnesium concentration cause a decrease in the inflammatory response while reduction in the extracellular magnesium results in inflammation. Inflammation causes endothelial dysfunction and activated endothelium facilitates adhesion and migration of cancer cells.
Chronically inflamed tissues continue to generate signals that attract leukocytes from the bloodstream. When leukocytes migrate from the bloodstream into the tissue they amplify the inflammatory response.
Magnesium literally puts the chill on inflammation. Heart disease begins with inflammatory chemicals that rage like a fever through your blood vessels. Cool the heat by getting the recommended daily minimum of magnesium suggests Medical University of South Carolina researchers. They measured blood inflammation levels–using the C-reactive protein (CRP) test–in 3,800 men and women and found that those who got less than 50% of the RDA (310 to 420 mg) for magnesium were almost three times as likely to have dangerously high CRP levels as those who consumed enough. Being over age 40 and overweight and consuming less than 50% of the RDA more than doubled the risk of blood vessel-damaging inflammation.
Chronic inflammation destabilizes cholesterol deposits in the coronary arteries, leading to heart attacks and strokes.
A study performed by the VA Administration, published in JADA, 1998 on 10,000 US veterans, showed that most coronary heart disease started as an endothelial infection and in most cases was caused by pathogens. Recognizing the role of inflammation in arteriosclerosis represents a huge paradigm shift for cardiologists. The American College of Cardiology, the American College of Physician’s and the American Heart Association largely ignores the involvement of inflammation in heart attacks and strokes and certainly they ignore unresolved psycho-emotional trauma, as well as the toxic build up of mercury which can lead to massive heart failure and sudden death even in the healthiest athlete.
Inflammation not only further damages the artery walls, leaving them stiffer and more prone to plaque buildup, but it also makes any plaque that’s already there more fragile and more likely to burst.
A 2006 issue of the Journal of the American College of Nutrition an article showing that as consumption of magnesium fell, the levels of C-reactive protein went up. C-reactive protein, or CRP, is produced in the liver and has emerged as a strong predictor of clinical events of cardiovascular diseases, such as heart attacks and stroke, even in cases where cholesterol levels may be normal. For this reason, CRP assays may become a routine part of blood tests for determining CVD risk. CRP levels in the blood are normally undetectable or very low; high levels are strongly associated with inflammation.
Inflammation is the missing link to explain the role of magnesium in many pathological conditions.