An American Hero…
Paul Mason’s Mission to Educate Humanity about MagnesiumDecember 2016
By Michael Downey
For the past 25 years, Paul Mason’s life mission has been to persuade the world to consume more magnesium.
His campaign is reminiscent of the slow battle to educate mainstream medicine that higher vitamin D levels are needed to reduce all-cause mortality.
Recently, Mason talked to Life Extension Magazine® about his tireless efforts and how he discovered America’s only known source of natural, magnesium-abundant, high-pH mineral water.
Paul Mason is an American hero who has tirelessly exposed the huge numbers of needless deaths caused by magnesium deficiency in the United States. One way Paul accomplished this was to amalgamate a number of published studies to show the lethal impact on human populations when there is insufficient magnesium in their drinking water.
Mason loves to point to recently published evidence demonstrating that universally increased magnesium intake could prevent an astounding 4.5 million deaths worldwide, annually.1 In an effort to stop this epidemic, he has distributed up to 15 million gallons of naturally sourced, magnesium-rich mineral water each year for the last 20 years from his Adobe Springs Water Company in the mountains of central California.
“And I’m now working to develop an additional 50 million gallons per year of magnesium-rich water from nearby lands,” he told us.
For many years, he has tried to convince the FDA—to no avail—and producers of bottled water and soft drinks worldwide that simply adding magnesium to their beverages would provide most people with at least the government’s recommended intake of this lifesaving mineral. If bottlers prefer to market bottled water that is naturally rich in magnesium, he will gladly supply them with bulk water from his state-licensed and inspected springs.
Discovering America’s Richest Water-Source of Magnesium
Paul first began investigating how thoroughly widespread magnesium deficiency is—and collecting a vast online library of studies showing how magnesium greatly reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease—shortly after he accidentally discovered the magnesium-rich springs near Patterson, California. Crunching the numbers, he estimates his water saves about 90 lives a year by preventing heart attack and stroke.
It all started in 1992 when Paul bought a property in Central California named Adobe Canyon, which he says resembles a miniature Grand Canyon. After he cleared the property, he discovered it contained a huge underground spring. He had the water lab-tested to ensure it was safe. When the test came back showing high levels of magnesium, he asked the chemist, “Is that good or bad?” The chemist responded, “Oh that’s good, but unheard of.”
So Paul started emailing magnesium researchers that the Adobe Springs had unheard-of magnesium abundance of 110 mg per liter, combined with an extremely low 6.3 mg/L sodium content and a healthy pH of 8.4 and great flavor, too. Then the researchers started coming to see the Adobe Springs as a wonder of the world, and they convinced Paul Mason of the lifesaving benefits of magnesium.
It took five years of work at Adobe Springs to install tanks and 6” pipes, build a loading dock, and find the first bottler, which was challenging in 1992 when few people drank bottled water.
Paul notes that, in 2009, the World Health Organization finally recommended that all drinking water should contain at least 25 mg of magnesium per liter to prevent heart attacks and stroke.2
Gathering the Evidence
Mason’s online library now provides access to over 300 studies on magnesium, documenting that even small amounts of magnesium in drinking water—often just 5-20 mg per liter—can reduce the incidence of mortality and heart disease. The underlying reason for this is the widespread magnesium deficiency that results from increased consumption of processed foods, water purification processes that remove natural minerals, and mineral-depleted soil.
For about 20 years, he has financially supported researchers worldwide who investigate magnesium and the critical need for this mineral. He names several scientists who receive monthly grants from him and then adds:
“…in 2015, I created the Magnesium For Health Foundation and also brought together 12 magnesium scientists from all over the world to exchange knowledge at a conference in San Francisco—I hope to do the same thing in 2017.”
Studies continue to validate Mason’s urgent advice to the world that consuming more magnesium could save millions of lives every year. Regrettably, few have bothered to pay attention.
Public Awareness: “There Is a Long Way to Go”
Low blood levels of magnesium are considered to be one of the most underdiagnosed blood chemical deficiencies in modern medicine.3 For this reason, it is important to have blood magnesium levels tested regularly and to supplement when necessary.
“Life Extension Magazine has certainly helped raise public awareness,” explains Mason. “But there is a long way to go.”
Some pharmaceuticals change the way magnesium is utilized by the body by inhibiting nutrient absorption, synthesis, transport, metabolism, and excretion.4,5 Processed and snack foods often have the magnesium processed right out of them.6 Aging itself has been linked with declining magnesium in human cells.7 And as Mason stresses, many Americans drink filtered or bottled water, which in the US contains only 10% as much magnesium as bottled water in the rest of the world.8
Most Americans ingest an average of about 270 mg of magnesium a day, well below the modest RDA levels—420 mg for adult males and 320 mg for adult females—which will generate a substantial cumulative deficiency over months and years.9 Older individuals are at elevated risk of becoming magnesium-depleted,10 and substantial deficiency is common by age 50. Deficiency can reach severe levels among those with any condition that causes frequent loose stools, including celiac disease and bowel resection surgery. And as Mason points out, insufficient vitamin D levels can exacerbate magnesium deficiency.11
Compelling research shows that for each 0.25 mg/dL increase in plasma magnesium, the risk of sudden cardiac death falls by 41%.13 Another study found that adults with a magnesium intake lower than the recommended amount were up to 1.75 times more likely to have elevated C-reactive protein,14 a blood marker for inflammation that predicts the likelihood of a heart attack or stroke. Among adults already at high risk of cardiovascular disease, those who had the highest magnesium intakes were demonstrated to have a 34% reduction in mortality risk relative to those having the lowest intake.15
Accumulating evidence also suggests that low magnesium intake and levels drastically accelerate the aging process and affect lifespan.13,16-18 Lab culture studies show that low magnesium accelerates the senescence of some human cells,19 prompting the scientists behind one study to write, “…we propose that broadly correcting nutritional intakes of Mg might contribute to healthier aging and the prevention of age-related diseases.”19 In fact, research suggests that magnesium is absolutely essential for repairing telomeres, the aging-timers found on DNA strands.20
Scientists have associated higher magnesium levels with a 40% lower risk of death from cardiovascular disease,12 a 77% reduced risk of sudden cardiac death,13 a 50% decreased risk of cancer,12 and 40% lower risk of death from all causes.12
Reduced Magnesium Bioavailability from Food
These shocking statistics strongly support Mason’s mission to increase magnesium intakes—especially in light of research reporting that, “In developed countries, the magnesium intake is often marginal.”21 But focusing on different dietary choices does not appear to be the answer.
“Magnesium in food is less bioavailable than from water because of interference from dietary fat, fiber, competing minerals, and so on,” he explains. Research backs him up. One published study found that magnesium is more quickly and better absorbed from magnesium-rich water than from food.21
Most Americans don’t have Mason’s access to his Adobe Springs mineral water and the coffee he makes from it each day. But he added, “I also take Life Extension® magnesium supplements when I’m traveling,” and he suggested that all Americans without access to his water do the same. He also invited readers who find themselves in the area to bring their own bottles to the Adobe Springs free spigot near Patterson, California, and load up on magnesium-rich water.
For most of us, however, mineral supplements are critical. Fortunately, they’re among the least expensive on the market. Maybe that’s why they’re not generally promoted as the lifesaving nutrient they represent. And as Mason has experienced firsthand, the federal government has repeatedly suppressed magnesium’s importance in countering today’s heart attacks and strokes.
Although cheap magnesium supplements are an easy solution, this unsung hero would love to see more people with daily access to magnesium-rich, low-sodium, high-pH water. Both Mason and his staff have taken a vow to maintain modest lifestyles so that resources can stay focused on developing magnesium-rich water sources worldwide.
“I live in a 40-year-old doublewide and drive a 12-year-old pickup,” he adds.
“I think there will be an increasing demand for magnesium-rich water, so I’m hoping to develop more sources from magnesium-rich aquifers. My fine crew at the Adobe Springs is onboard…and if any reader knows of a spring, creek, or aquifer having at least 25 mg of magnesium per liter, I’d like to know about it—so we can save even more lives.”
Readers can access Paul Mason’s vast online collection of magnesium studies at http://www.mgwater.com/ and if in the area, can pick up Adobe Springs water at the free roadside spigot at 19,000 Del Puerto Canyon Road, Patterson, CA. See the map for directions.
If you have any questions on the scientific content of this article, please call a Life Extension® Wellness Specialist at 1-866-864-3027.
- Rosanoff A. The high heart health value of drinking-water magnesium. Med Hypotheses. 2013;81(6):1063-5.
- Available at: http://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/publications/publication_9789241563550/en/. Accessed September 15, 2016.
- Iannello S, Belfiore F. Hypomagnesemia. A review of pathophysiological, clinical and therapeutical aspects. Panminerva Med. 2001;43(3):177-209.
- Kuipers MT, Thang HD, Arntzenius AB. Hypomagnesaemia due to use of proton pump inhibitors--a review. Neth J Med. 2009;67(5):169-72.
- Cundy T, Dissanayake A. Severe hypomagnesaemia in long-term users of proton-pump inhibitors. Clin Endocrinol (Oxf). 2008;69(2):338-41.
- Available at: http://www.ancient-minerals.com/magnesium-sources/dietary/. Accessed September 14, 2016.
- Veronese N, Zanforlini BM, Manzato E, et al. Magnesium and healthy aging. Magnes Res. 2015;28(3):112-5.
- Available at: http://www.mgwater.com/calcs.shtml. Accessed September 15, 2016.
- Ervin RB, Wang CY, Wright JD, et al. Dietary intake of selected minerals for the United States population: 1999-2000. Adv Data. 2004(341):1-5.
- Laires MJ, Monteiro CP, Bicho M. Role of cellular magnesium in health and human disease. Front Biosci. 2004;9:262-76.
- Berkelhammer C, Bear RA. A clinical approach to common electrolyte problems: 4. Hypomagnesemia. Can Med Assoc J. 1985;132(4):360-8.
- Leone N, Courbon D, Ducimetiere P, et al. Zinc, copper, and magnesium and risks for all-cause, cancer, and cardiovascular mortality. Epidemiology. 2006;17(3):308-14.
- Chiuve SE, Korngold EC, Januzzi JL, Jr., et al. Plasma and dietary magnesium and risk of sudden cardiac death in women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2011;93(2):253-60.
- King DE, Mainous AG, 3rd, Geesey ME, et al. Dietary magnesium and C-reactive protein levels. J Am Coll Nutr. 2005;24(3):166-71.
- Guasch-Ferre M, Bullo M, Estruch R, et al. Dietary magnesium intake is inversely associated with mortality in adults at high cardiovascular disease risk. J Nutr. 2014;144(1):55-60.
- Adamopoulos C, Pitt B, Sui X, et al. Low serum magnesium and cardiovascular mortality in chronic heart failure: a propensity-matched study. Int J Cardiol. 2009;136(3):270-7.
- Sakaguchi Y, Fujii N, Shoji T, et al. Hypomagnesemia is a significant predictor of cardiovascular and non-cardiovascular mortality in patients undergoing hemodialysis. Kidney Int. 2014;85(1):174-81.
- Ishimura E, Okuno S, Yamakawa T, et al. Serum magnesium concentration is a significant predictor of mortality in maintenance hemodialysis patients. Magnes Res. 2007;20(4):237-44.
- Killilea DW, Maier JA. A connection between magnesium deficiency and aging: new insights from cellular studies. Magnes Res. 2008;21(2):77-82.
- Rowe WJ. Correcting magnesium deficiencies may prolong life. Clin Interv Aging. 2012;7:51-4.
- Durlach J, Bara M, Guiet-Bara A. Magnesium level in drinking water and cardiovascular risk factor: a hypothesis. Magnesium. 1985;4(1):5-15.
- Grober U, Schmidt J, Kisters K. Magnesium in Prevention and Therapy. Nutrients. 2015;7(9):8199-226.
- Available at: http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/supplement/magnesium. Accessed September 15, 2016.
- Available at: http://www.mgwater.com/ft/adobe/Adobe%202009%20Lab%20Report.pdf. Accessed September 15, 2016.