Magnesium is often called a “relaxation mineral” and that is because the mineral is one of the biggest and best assets in the battle against stress.
The modern society we live in, the dynamic lifestyle that is expected, often carries tons of stress as a side effect.
And as a result, our body suffers, and we experience magnesium deficiency. Further contributing to the problem is that our diet is poor in foods high in magnesium and other healthy nutrients, and as a result, we get even more stressed.
Magnesium is often linked with symptoms like muscle cramps, muscle stiffness and similar. The mineral is actually linked with more than 300 enzymes in our body, making it one of the most important minerals we consume on a daily basis.
What is interesting that you will rarely see a doctor tell you to increase your magnesium levels when you are experiencing stress and headaches, two symptoms that are easily triggered by a low amount of magnesium in your body.
Magnesium, however, is the critical and crucial medication in many emergency rooms. But you do not need to get to the ER in order to understand that you need more magnesium in your diet.
Magnesium – The Relaxation Mineral
What magnesium does for you contribute to more than 300 enzyme processes in your body. Magnesium is an electrolyte, an active compound you need in order to function properly.
If you have been to the ER at least once, you know that every infusion you get there contains electrolytes. The technology has gone to a point where you can prepare an electrolyte drink at home thanks to a powder bag with electrolytes.
Magnesium, among other things, helps you relax, relieve stress, and sleep better. All three reasons contribute to magnesium earning the name “the relaxation mineral”.
The list of symptoms and medical references to magnesium deficiency is extremely long, with more than 3500 references to it.
However, some of the common symptoms you will experience due to magnesium deficiency include:
- Muscle cramps
- Headaches and migraines
- Kidney stones
- Irritable bladder
- High blood pressure
- Menstrual cramps
- Excessive stress
Why You are Having Magnesium Deficiency?
The answer to this question is simple, and can be answered in two ways, with a simple answer, and a valid question. The simple answer is that many of consuming a low quality and nutrient poor diet, with practically no magnesium in it.
We eat highly processed, refined foods based on meat, dairy and white flour. No food on that list contains magnesium.
The question you need to answer is when was the last time you had a healthy dose of sea vegetables, leafy greens, beans, and nuts as a main meal?
To make matters worse, our dynamic and modern lifestyle forces us to lose even that little magnesium we get from our poor diet.
For example, coffee, alcohol, salt, intense stress, prolonged stress, profuse sweating, chronic diarrhea, menstruation, diuretics, carbonated drinks, antibiotics, all of them contribute to our body losing magnesium.
Last, but not least, magnesium is not a mineral that is easily absorbed by our bodies. Even when taking magnesium supplements, chances are, you might not get enough magnesium.
In order to properly absorb magnesium, our body also needs selenium, calcium, vitamin D and vitamin B6, all of which are not easy to be found in a nutrient poor diet.
How to Improve Your Magnesium Levels?
The first thing you need to do in order to get more magnesium is to limit yourself from foods and habits that drain your body from magnesium.
For starters, that includes limiting coffee, sugar, salt, carbonated drinks and alcohol from your diet.
The next step on your list is to learn how to practice relaxation, and check with your doctor whether some medications you are taking are limiting the amount of magnesium you absorb.
The next and logical step towards avoiding magnesium deficiency is to include more foods high in magnesium in your diet.
Some of those include: kale, almonds, brazil nuts, millet, pecans, cashews, walnuts, beans, brown rice, collard greens, dates, shrimps, parsley, barley, garlic and leafy greens.
If all that fails, you can always take some magnesium supplements for kick starting your magnesium rich diet. However, bear in mind that constant diet with magnesium supplements won’t do any good to you.
Magnesium supplements are good when you are experiencing some magnesium deficiency symptoms, and you need to increase your magnesium intake in a hurry. However, in the long-term, magnesium rich diet is what you need.
For those of you who want supplements, the minimum amount you need is 300 mg per day. Most of us get 100 mg per day from our malnutrition diet.
Those with magnesium rich diet can reach 300 mg per day. It is also worth noting that some people need much more magnesium (those with muscle problems for example), where the daily recommended dose can go as high as 1000 mg per day.
When taking magnesium supplements, it is important to note that magnesium supplements with calcium work the best. Magnesium binds with calcium and you get the most out of the two minerals.
Avoid magnesium sulfate, gluconate, oxide and carbonate.
Another thing to remember is that people with heart diseases and kidney diseases should consult with their doctor first before taking any magnesium supplements.