Most people don’t realize how important magnesium is to their health, which is why it's role is often overlooked. When it comes down to the facts, a staggering 75% of individuals don't meet daily requirements.
When you don't understand the importance of something, it is difficult to make sure you get what you need. Magnesium is one of the forgotten minerals, but without it, your health can take a serious downfall. Several health problems are associated with low magnesium levels, such as diabetes, celiac disease, and chronic diarrhea, so symptoms often get attributed to something else.
Identifying Magnesium Deficiency
Awareness of the problems associated with magnesium deficiency is the best way to stay healthy and ensure you get the magnesium you need.
This vital mineral regulates over 300 biochemical reactions that your body depends upon for healthy function. Without magnesium, your body is unable to produce ATP, which is the fundamental source of energy for every cell in your body.
1. Muscle Problems: Magnesium deficiency can result in muscle cramps and twitches. This happens because low magnesium allows for increased calcium to flow into nerve cells, causing excitation and over-stimulation.
2. Mental Disorders: A lack of empathy is linked to magnesium deficiency and in prolonged instances, even delirium. There are also studies linking low levels of magnesium to anxiety and the development of depression. (1) The cause is again thought to lie in nerve dysfunction.
3. Osteoporosis: The risk of weakened bones is linked to age, lack of exercise, and low levels of vitamins D and K. Magnesium also plays a role in bone health, so a lack can contribute to osteoporosis. (2) By lowering blood levels of calcium which is the main component of bones, a lack of magnesium can leave your bones in a fragile state and at risks for fracture.
4. Fatigue: Mental and physical exhaustion is known to be caused from a magnesium deficiency. Not only do your muscles become weaker, but your mind and body feel weak and tired.
Low magnesium levels are also associated with low potassium in the muscles, which weakens them. Feeling exhausted and fatigued every day for extended periods of time could point to a magnesium deficiency.
5. High Blood Pressure: Having low levels of magnesium in your body contributes to increased blood pressure, which leads to hypertension and cardiovascular diseases. (3) Evidence is still lacking, but studies have found that magnesium supplements have lowered blood pressure in afflicted individuals.
The link to heart disease is not certain, but by affecting blood pressure, the risk of heart problems is significantly increased if you also have magnesium deficiency.
6. Asthma: Several cases of asthma being linked to magnesium have been recorded. It seems that magnesium levels tend to be lower in individuals with asthma as compared to those without.
Magnesium’s link to calcium is the underlying cause, as low levels of magnesium allow for increased calcium build up. When this occurs in your lung muscles, airways become constricted, making breathing difficult. In addition to this, inhalers with magnesium sulfate are given to asthma patients to relieve symptoms.
7. Irregular Heartbeat: Arrhythmia or an irregular heartbeat is one of the more serious complications associated with low magnesium levels. (4) Arrhythmia can be accompanied by lightheadedness, chest pain, or difficulty breathing, which makes it a little easier to identify.
Otherwise, symptoms can be calm & often overlooked. Low magnesium levels cause an imbalance in potassium within the heart muscles, which is thought to contribute to the problem. Patients with congestive heart failure and arrhythmia are known to have lower levels of magnesium than healthy individuals, and treatment with magnesium injections brought about improvements.
8. Migraine Support: Migraines are more intense than your average headache - interfering with quality of life. Magnesium provides a relaxing effect on your nervous system, so when low, you are at risk for more frequent migraines.
Magnesium supplements can help to reduce severity and frequency of migraines.
9. Severe PMS Symptoms: When magnesium levels are low, PMS symptoms - bloating, weight gain, cramping, and breast tenderness, increase. If you notice these symptoms getting worse during your cycle and regular treatment options are not helping, you likely have a magnesium deficiency. Taking magnesium supplements will be a better treatment option for alleviating PMS pains. (5)
How to Add Magnesium to Your Diet..
The reason so many people become deficient in magnesium is because it is not made by the body. You must get it from outside sources. Magnesium is easy to get in your diet and yet many people in the country are deficient.
Knowing where to get your magnesium from will help ensure you give your body all it needs, and prevent you from being part of that statistic. The top magnesium-rich foods to incorporate into your diet include:
♦ Dark chocolate
♦ Nuts and seeds
♦ Legumes and beans
♦ Whole grains (like buckwheat and quinoa)
♦ Fatty fish (Salmon, halibut, and mackerel)
♦ Leafy greens
Magnesium deficiency causes bone and muscle problems, heart and circulatory issues, hormonal and enzyme imbalances, and an inability to produce the energy you need to function. Without magnesium your internal systems cannot function at optimal levels, and health deteriorates.
Add more magnesium-rich foods to your diet or try a supplement, and give this vital mineral the attention it deserves.