Electrolytes and Trace Minerals

Sleep, Stress

Of the four main electrolytes – Sodium, Potassium, Calcium and Magnesium, Magnesium is the most important in terms of needing to take a supplement.

Why? Because it is deficient in most soils and therefore in most vegetables, even organic ones. It is one of the most important minerals in our body and yet so few people know this and equally, have no idea if they have an optimum ratio of magnesium/calcium.

When supplementing magnesium the choices are not always easy – there are many types! Citrate is favoured by some, malate by others, taurate, glycinate and bisglycinate are the principle ones. Magnesium also requires vitamin B6 to be absorbed, along with Boron, another trace element.

Without magnesium, the body cannot effectively process calcium and lay it down in the bones and teeth, leading to high circulating levels in the blood stream, where eventually, to clear it from the blood, it is deposited in fatty tissues, muscle tissue and joints, leading to arthritis, osteo-arthritis, painful tendons and tight muscles.

Hair Mineral Analysis

Magnesium is related to various body functions including cardiovascular regulation. It may play an important role in control of neuronal activity, cardiac excitability, neuro-muscular transmission, muscular contraction, vascular tone, blood pressure and peripheral blood flow. It has been demonstrated that people with high blood pressure often have reduced serum and intracellular levels of magnesium.

If you identify with any of the following conditions, you may have Magnesium Depletion. Find out if you do by applying for a Hair Mineral Analysis. Email me at recover@cynthiasillars.co.uk and find out if an undiagnosed imbalance or absence of key electrolyte minerals is behind some of your health issues


  • Excessive intake of alcohol, salt, phosphoric acid (soft drinks) caffeine
  • Protein-energy malnutrition. There is evidence that magnesium balance remains positive as long as protein is above 30mg a day

Endocrine disorders

  • Hyperaldosteronism
  • Hyperparathyroidism with hypercalcaemia
  • Hyperthyroidism
  • Diabetes mellitus and glycosuria


  • Profuse sweating
  • Intense, prolonged stress

Gastrointestinal disorders

  • Coeliac disease
  • Infections
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Mal-absorption syndromes
  • Pancreatitis
  • Partial Bowel Obstruction
  • Vomiting/Diarrhoea

Elevated Cortisol Levels

  • Chronic stress
  • Sleep depravation
  • Athletic and high frequency exercise

Pharmaceutical drugs

  • Aminoglycoside antibiotic
  • Cisplatin
  • Corticosteroids
  • Cyclosporins
  • Loop Diuretics
  • Tertracycline antibiotics


  • Metabolic disorders
  • Acidosis
  • Nephrotoxic drugs (eg cisplatin, cyclosporine)


  • Hyperthermia (hot flushes)
  • Hypercatabolic states such as burns
  • Phosphate depletion
  • Potassium depletion
  • Pregnancy
  • Lactation (prolonged eg 12 months or excessive lactation)
  • Excessive menstruation
  • Long term parenteral nutrition combined with loss of body fluids (eg diarrhoea)
  • Parasitic infection (eg pinworms)

Stress and Magnesium

Magnesium is very effective for stress related illness and mental health. Studies have shown its ability to regulate the hypothalamic/pituitary/adrenocorticol stress axis (HPA axis) which is the major component of the stress system. It’s also very successful for sleep problems when taken in its glycinate form with food and at bedtime, as well as improving symptoms of headache, anxiety, irritability and short term memory loss.

Potassium levels tend to be less of a problem providing the diet is rich with organic vegetables (to avoid the toxic residues of insecticides). Be aware that a shortage of potassium can leave the thyroid gland desensitised to thyroid hormones.

Don’t fall for the calcium myth if you have osteoporosis or any bone density problems, there is no need to supplement with calcium because of the plentiful supply of it in a modern Western diet. You are far more likely to be suffering from a lack of magnesium.