Magnesium is a mineral found in the earth, sea, plants and animals including humans. It is the fourth most abundant mineral in the human body and plays several important roles in the health of your body and brain. Almost every cell of our body contains Magnesium and needs it to function. Read on to learn about the important roles of Magnesium in our bodies…
1. Assisting with Biochemical Reactions in Your Body
About 60% of the Magnesium in your body is found in bone, while the rest is in muscles, soft tissues and fluids, including blood. Magnesium also known as a "helper molecule" assists in the biochemical reactions continuously performed by enzymes. It’s involved in more than 600 reactions in your body, such as:
- Energy creation: Converting food to energy.
- Protein formation: Creating new proteins from amino acids.
- Gene maintenance: Creating and repairing DNA.
- Muscle movements: helping muscles to contract and relax.
- Nervous system regulation: Regulating neurotransmitters, to send messages throughout your brain and nervous system.
2. Fighting Depression
Magnesium plays a critical role in brain function and mood with low levels being linked to an increased risk of depression.
One analysis in over 8,800 people found that people under the age of 65 with the low Magnesium intake had a 22% greater risk of depression. With some experts believing that the low Magnesium content of today’s foods may play a role in many cases of depression and mental illness.
In a randomized controlled trial of depression in older adults, 450 mg of Magnesium daily improved mood as effectively as an antidepressant drug. Knowing the risks involved in antidepressant drugs, it is definitely worth trying a natural alternative first.
3. Working Against Type 2 Diabetes and Insulin Resistance
Magnesium also benefits people with type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome. People who consume the most Magnesium have a lower risk of type 2 diabetes. Insulin resistance is one of the leading causes of metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. It's characterized by an impaired ability of muscle and liver cells to properly absorb sugar from your bloodstream.
Low levels of Magnesium in your blood can impair insulin’s ability to keep blood sugar levels under control. Studies suggest that about 48% of people with type 2 diabetes have low levels of Magnesium in their blood. A study has shown that supplementing Magnesium restores serum Magnesium levels, improving insulin sensitivity and metabolic control in type 2 diabetic patients.
We are strong believers that it is always best to consume your minerals through quality foods rather than supplements as this is how our bodies were designed to absorb and use the minerals effectively.
4. Boosting Exercise Performance
Magnesium has been found to enhance exercise performance. It is said that during exercise, you use 10–20% more Magnesium than when resting.
Magnesium assists to move blood sugar into your muscles and dispose of lactic acid, which can build up in muscles during exercise causing pain.
5. Combating Inflammation
Magnesium has been shown to help fight inflammation by reducing the inflammatory marker CRP and provides several other benefits.
High Magnesium foods such as fatty fish and dark chocolate are known to assist in reducing inflamation while a diet low in Magnesium has been linked to chronic inflmmation.
6. Helping Prevent Migraines
Migraine headaches are painful and debilitating. Nausea, vomiting and sensitivity to light and noise often occur. Some researchers believe that people who suffer from migraines are more likely than others to be Magnesium deficient. Studies have suggested that Magnesium can prevent and even help treat migraines.
We recommend drinking ¼ to a full teaspoon of Salt of the Earth Celtic Sea Salt in a glass of water to assist with replenishing the bodies vital minerals including Magnesium. Our taste buds are a great indication of the quantity you require. I often find that when I am needing a mineral boost the salty drink tastes quite sweet. If I am finding the flavor too salty, I take this as an indication that I am not needing as much on that particular day and reduce the quantity to taste.
7. Improving PMS Symptoms
Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is one of the most common disorders among women of childbearing age. The symptoms include water retention, abdominal cramps, tiredness and irritability. Interestingly, Magnesium has been shown to improve mood, reduce water retention and other symptoms in women with PMS.
8. Lowering Blood Pressure
Studies have shown that Magnesium can assist with lowering blood pressure. In a study of people who consumed 450 mg of Magnesium per day they experienced a significant decrease in systolic and diastolic blood pressure. It is believed that Magnesium lowers blood pressure in people with high blood pressure but has no effect on those with normal levels.
So what are the symptoms of Magnesium Deficiency?
These can include muscle cramps, fatigue, poor concentration, memory problems and mood changes.
Aside from not getting enough Magnesium in your diet, factors that can have a negative impact on your Magnesium levels include:
- Stress (especially when prolonged or severe).
- Inadequate sleep.
- Profuse perspiration.
- Excessive consumption of caffeine, salt, soft drinks or alcohol.
- Having heavy menstrual periods.
- Eating a diet that contains large quantities of processed and refined foods.
- The use of some multiple pharmaceutical medications.
- Gastrointestinal disorders such as short-term diarrhoea or vomiting and conditions that affect your absorption of nutrients.
- Getting older.
What is the recommended dietary intake (RDI) of Magnesium?
- 400 mg/day for men aged 19-30 years, increasing to 420 mg/day for those aged 31 and above.
- For women aged 19-30 years, the RDI is 310 mg/day, increasing to 320 mg from the age of 31 onwards.
How can I consume good natural sources of Magnesium?
The following foods are great natural sources of Magnesium:
- Salt of the Earth Celtic Sea Salt: 14.5% of the RDI in 10 grams ORDER HERE
- Pumpkin seeds: 46% of the RDI in a quarter cup (16 grams)
- Spinach, boiled: 39% of the RDI in a cup (180 grams)
- Swiss chard, boiled: 38% of the RDI in a cup (175 grams)
- Dark chocolate (70–85% cocoa): 33% of the RDI in 100 grams
- Black beans: 30% of the RDI in a cup (172 grams)
- Quinoa, cooked: 33% of the RDI the in a cup (185 grams)
- Halibut: 27% of the RDI in 100 grams
- Almonds: 25% of the RDI in a quarter cup (24 grams)
- Cashews: 25% of the RDI in a quarter cup (30 grams)
- Mackerel: 19% of the RDI in 100 grams
- Avocado: 15% of the RDI in one medium avocado (200 grams)
- Salmon: 9% of the RDI in 100 grams