Magnesium (Mg) is a very important mineral that our body needs to function. Magnesium helps with and is responsible for energy transfer, storage, and utilization; this is very important to the function of muscles as it helps nerve conduction. Magnesium also keeps your heart rhythm steady, blood sugar levels balanced, and your joint cartilage healthy, as well as helping with protein and bone synthesis.
The majority of magnesium stored in the body is found mostly in our bones, muscles, and other soft tissues, respectively. It is possible for magnesium to be absorbed through the stomach and other portions of the colon; however, upon consumption, most magnesium is absorbed through the small intestines. Magnesium levels in the body are maintained in the kidneys and small intestines.
Unfortunately, magnesium deficiency is very common! Magnesium deficiency can be the result of a variety of different conditions as well as manifest in a variety of ways, in severe cases such as heart arrhythmias, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, and weakness. Magnesium deficiency can be a result of GI disorders, renal disorders, endocrine and metabolic causes. It has been found that the average dietary magnesium intake in women is 68% of the recommended daily average, indicating that a large proportion of our population has substantial dietary magnesium deficits. Magnesium deficiency is seen frequently in alcoholics and diabetic patients, in whom a combination of factors contributes to its pathogenesis. Diets deficient in magnesium are also often deficient in other nutrients that may affect bon. Magnesium deficiency can lead to magnesium-induced osteoporosis. An excessive amount of magnesium can also negatively affect the body, potentially causing nausea, stomach cramps, or diarrhea.
If you are not getting enough magnesium through your diet, it would be good to look into modifying your diet, or potentially taking magnesium supplements. As always, it is important to speak to your PCP or the doctor that is primarily responsible for your health management to see how magnesium may be playing into your current health status.
It is important to have a diet rich in magnesium in order to have a properly functioning body! To make sure you are getting enough magnesium in your diet, it is important to eat foods in the leafy green vegetables, nuts, grains, seafoods, and meats categories. Examples of these foods would be:
Spinach, okra, edamame
Almonds, cashews, brazil nuts
Mollusks, salmon, mackerel
At Restorative, we have seen great results with patients who supplement magnesium. Supplementing magnesium can help with decreasing headaches/migraines, improve sleep, decrease anxiety, decrease pain, and decrease systemic inflammation.
Al-Ghamdi SM, Cameron EC, Sutton RA. Magnesium deficiency: pathophysiologic and clinical overview. Am. J. Kidney Dis. 1994;24(5):737-752.