HEALTH

Nutritional Magnesium Association critiques recent U.S. Preventive Services Task Force report

BY Michael Johnsen

LOS ANGELES — The Nutritional Magnesium Association on Wednesday noted magnesium is an essential nutrient that helps absorb necessary nutritional supplements like vitamin D or calcium in response to a recent U.S. Preventive Services Task Force report that suggested supplementing with these ingredients may not help prevent bone fractures in postmenopausal women, while also increasing the risk of kidney stones. 

"Adequate levels of magnesium in the body are essential for the absorption and metabolism of vitamin D and calcium," stated Carolyn Dean, magnesium expert and medical advisory board member for NMA. "Magnesium converts vitamin D into its active form so that it can help calcium absorption and help prevent clogged arteries by drawing calcium out of the blood and soft tissues back into the bones where it is needed to build healthy bone structure," she said. "Nutrients act in a synergetic way in the body. Absorption and metabolism of a particular nutrient will be affected, to a greater or lesser degree, by the other nutrients available to the body. This is also true with vitamin D."

According to the nonprofit Vitamin D Council, "In order to receive the most health benefit from increased levels of vitamin D, the proper cofactors must be present in the body … magnesium, vitamin K, vitamin A, zinc and boron."

"It is vitally important that studies on the efficacy of vitamin D and calcium in relation to bone health are not done in isolation in the absence of magnesium," Dean said. "The fact that magnesium works synergistically with vitamin D and calcium by stimulating the specific hormone calcitonin—which helps to preserve bone structure and draws calcium out of the blood and soft tissues back into the bones, preventing osteoporosis, some forms of arthritis and kidney stones — cannot be overlooked."


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GNC names new board member

BY Michael Johnsen

PITTSBURGH — GNC on Monday named Scott O’Hara to its board of directors. 

"[O’Hara’s] wealth of knowledge and experience, particularly his international business expertise, should be a valuable resource to GNC as we move forward," stated Joe Fortunato, GNC chairman and CEO. 

O’Hara was formerly an EVP of H.J. Heinz Company, serving most recently as president and CEO of Heinz North America. Previous roles with Heinz included service as CEO Heinz Europe and EVP Asia Pacific. Prior to joining the H.J. Heinz Company in 2006, O’Hara was an executive of the Gillette Company. He currently serves on the board of directors of Ecolab.


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Nexafed gains distribution in Kerr Drug

BY Michael Johnsen

PALATINE, Ill. — Acura Pharmaceuticals on Tuesday announced that its next-generation pseudoephedrine with abuse-deterrent technology will now be stocked by North Carolina’s Kerr Drug. 

Nexafed is a 30 mg immediate-release pseudoephedrine product that combines effective nasal-congestion relief with a unique technology that disrupts the conversion of pseudoephedrine into methamphetamine, Acura noted. 

“We anticipated early interest in Nexafed from independent pharmacies but it is rewarding that forward-looking drug chains like Kerr Drug are stepping up to make a difference in the communities in which they operate," stated Robert Jones, president and CEO Acura Pharmaceuticals. 

Nexafed launched commercially in December 2012 and is now available through national and regional drug wholesalers.


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