Magnesium is a mineral that’s found in the body, and it has so many different uses!
It aids in many different processes such as helping with energy production through the metabolism, structural integrity of the muscles and bones, signaling of cells throughout the body, and more.
Magnesium can come from a variety of foods and can also come in the form of a supplement.
Because Magnesium is such an important nutrient, it can help with many different conditions in the body, some of the most common ailments include:
Magnesium has been shown to be helpful for insomnia by helping individuals to fall asleep faster, and stay asleep for longer. It was also shown to be helpful in reducing restless leg syndrome, a condition leading to restlessness of the legs at night, causing insomnia.
Headache / Migraine
Regular supplementation with magnesium has been shown to help people who suffer from headaches and migraines. This may be because individuals who suffer from headaches have been shown to have lower Magnesium levels within their cells.
In one study, they showed that supplementation with Magnesium decreased the number of migraine attacks per month as well as the number of days experiencing a migraine per month and the severity of the migraine was less.
Magnesium plays a role in muscle contractions, so it’s no surprise that it can help with muscle pain/cramps. One of the common symptoms of a magnesium deficiency is leg cramps, and those who supplement with magnesium have found a reduction in the frequency and severity of leg cramps.
Magnesium has been shown to help with both anxiety and depression. Studies have found a correlation between low magnesium levels and depression; therefore, it may be indicated in some cases.
Studies also show that magnesium can help to decrease anxiety symptoms premenstrual as well as anxiety not associated with the menstrual cycle.
Many of us are deficient in magnesium due to consuming highly processed, refined diets based mostly on white flour, meat & dairy.
Other factors that are shown to deplete magnesium in the body are coffee, alcohol & sugar consumption, long-term stress levels, and the lack of magnesium in our soils.
Signs of a magnesium deficiency include tight, crampy & stiff muscles, insomnia, and low mood or anxiety.
There are many different forms of magnesium, and each form does something a little different in the body.
Most common types of magnesium:
Magnesium Threonate: Helps with cognition & memory.
Magnesium Bisglycinate: Promotes relaxation of the muscles & mind, with no laxative effect.
Magnesium Citrate: Helpful with constipation.
Magnesium Oxide: Helps with constipation & improves digestion.
Magnesium Malate: Improves energy production & reduces chronic fatigue.
Magnesium can be supplemented, but can also be found in a variety of different foods.
Foods that are high in magnesium include kelp, almonds, cashews, buckwheat, Brazil nuts, dulse, millet, pecans, walnuts, rye, tofu, soy, beans, brown rice, figs, dates, collard greens, shrimp, avocado, parsley, beans, barley, dandelion greens & garlic.
If you think you could be suffering from a magnesium deficiency, be sure to increase these foods in the diet or talk to your healthcare provider about whether magnesium supplementation may be right for you.
Dr. Samantha Allen, ND