Medical Research


Optimal consumption of drinking water per se (independent of calcium or magnesium concentrations) is correlated significantly to increased serum concentrations of sodium, potassium, magnesium and the important blood protein albumin (though not increased calcium).  When extra water is consumed, kidney function allows optimal cell hydration by increasing specific osmotic solute concentrations in extracellular fluids (plasma, interstitial fluid).

Optimal consumption of drinking water appears to be 6 to 8 glasses (1.5 to 2 liters) of water per day consumed appropriately throughout the day.  With optimal hydration over 12 weeks,  serum sodium concentrations increase by up to one per cent and serum potassium concentrations increase by up to five per cent.  Serum magnesium concentrations increase by up to three per cent.  In addition, those people with the highest increase in serum magnesium have the highest increase in serum albumin protein.  High levels of serum albumin are correlated to survival from diseases - including cancers. See Cancer Survival and Cancer Prevention.

Extracellular (interstitial) potassium concentrations are major determinants of the resting membrane potential across cell membranes (see the medical Goldman-Hodgkin-Katz voltage equation).  The resting membrane potential is the basis for the action potential which is essential for optimal nerve and muscle function.  The higher the concentration of extracellular potassium, the lower the threshold for an action potential in brain, nerve and muscle cells.  This is particularly useful in maintaining function in older people and in people engaged in high physical activity such as elite sport.

Optimal magnesium intake and calcium intake from drinking water appears to be the amount sufficient to stabilize serum parathyroid hormone (PTH) concentrations in the body.  Extra consumption of drinking water that is devoid of calcium and magnesium results in a significant decrease in serum calcium and a significant increase in serum PTH.  It is recommended therefore that a diet rich in calcium be consumed if extra water is consumed that is devoid of calcium or magnesium.

A chronic increase in the secretion of parathyroid hormone (PTH) from the parathyroid glands frequently results in age-related resorption of bone and osteoporosis. It is considered also that chronically increased PTH concentrations may be associated with the development of atherosclerosis and coronary heart disease.  Atherosclerosis, with consequent heart attack and stroke, overwhelmingly contributes to more mortality and more serious morbidity in the Western world than any other disorder.

The prestigious USA National Institutes of Health (NIH) states that drinking water can be a source of magnesium and that there is an increased interest in the role of magnesium consumption (but no absolute proof) in preventing and managing hypertension, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, diabetes and migraine headache.

[NIH Dietary Supplement Fact Sheet]

It is considered that magnesium mediated decreases in cytokine production may be responsible for the multiple health benefits claimed for magnesium.  See Magnesium Decreases Inflammatory Cytokine Production:  A Novel Innate Immunomodulatory Mechanism.

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Magnesium has been identified also as an essential second messenger and regulator of signaling in human immune system T cells.  Activation of T cells requires a rapid magnesium influx.  Immune system T cells are involved in a range of immunological processes including activation of macrophages and the destruction of virally infected cells and tumor cells.  For an excellent article on magnesium and T cell activiation see the publication in Nature from the research group at the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, USA.  See Signaling role for Mg2+ revealed by immunodeficiency due to loss of MagT1.

[Full article:]

Though opinions vary enormously, general consensus from the medical literature is that drinking water should contain in excess of either 25mg per liter magnesium or 50mg per liter calcium.  Clinical and medical trials conducted by Unique Global Possibilities suggest that drinking water should contain about 100mg per liter magnesium for optimal health and longevity and the magnesium should be in the form of magnesium bicarbonate or magnesium citrate at a mild alkaline pH value (pH 8.3 to 8.5).

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