Are you getting enough magnesium?
According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine “magnesium is needed for more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body. It helps to maintain normal nerve and muscle function, supports a healthy immune system, keeps the heart beat steady, and helps bones remain strong. It also helps regulate blood glucose levels and aid in the production of energy and protein. There is ongoing research into the role of magnesium in preventing and managing disorders such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes.”
How much Magnesium should you be getting every day?
The National Institutes of Health have provided this guideline for daily magnesium requirements:
Age Male Female Pregnancy Lactation
Birth to 6 months 30 mg* 30 mg*
7–12 months 75 mg* 75 mg*
1–3 years 80 mg 80 mg
4–8 years 130 mg 130 mg
9–13 years 240 mg 240 mg
14–18 years 410 mg 360 mg 400 mg 360 mg
19–30 years 400 mg 310 mg 350 mg 310 mg
31–50 years 420 mg 320 mg 360 mg 320 mg
51+ years 420 mg 320 mg
*Adequate Intake (AI)
Signs you may be deficient in magnesium
According to the Magnesium Nutritional Association, Magnesium deficiency triggers or contributes to the following 22 conditions:
- Anxiety and Panic attacks
- Blood clots
- Bowel disease induced by constipation
- Cystitis and bladder spasms
- Heart disease
- Kidney stones
- Migraine headaches
- Musculoskeletal conditions- Fibrositis, fibromyalgia, muscle spasms, eye twitches, cramps and chronic neck and back pain
- Nerve problems- migraines, muscle contractions, gastrointestinal spasms, and calf, foot and toe cramps, vertigo and confusion
- Premenstrual Syndrome, dysmenorrhea, infertility, premature contractions, preeclampsia, and eclampsia in pregnancy.
- Raynaud’s Syndrome
- Sudden infant death syndrome
- Tooth decay
How can I get more Magnesium in my diet? Do I need to take a supplement?
It may seem that you should be able to get enough magnesium if you eat the right things. For example, leafy greens, nuts and seeds, beans and lentils, some whole grains and chocolate, all have higher levels of magnesium than other foods, but you would have to eat nothing but those foods all day to even come close to the recommended amounts of magnesium for a healthy adult. While this is not to say that you should not try to get as much magnesium as you can through your diet, you may want to add some magnesium supplements to your day, to assure you are getting enough.