Focus On: Magnesium

Some of the more common symptoms of magnesium deficiency include fatigue, back or neck pain, muscle cramps, palpitations, weakness, loss of appetite, insomnia, loss of balance, headaches, anxiety, and depression. Although easy enough to treat, if magnesium deficiencies go on long enough, they can end up as diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.

WHAT IS IT?

Magnesium is a naturally occurring mineral found in almost every living organism. Of all the minerals our bodies contain, this one is the fourth most abundant, and about half of it is found in our bones. The other half is found inside the cells of our soft tissues and organs.

Benefits

Besides keeping our bones strong, your body uses magnesium for hundreds of tasks like maintaining nerve function, regulating heart rhythm, and supporting a healthy immune system. Magnesium also helps regulate blood sugar levels, promotes normal blood pressure, and is known to be involved in energy metabolism and protein synthesis. There is an increased interest in how magnesium positively impacts disorders such as hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes.

Natural Sources

GREEN VEGETABLES: Magnesium is concentrated at the center of the chlorophyll molecule (which gives it it’s green color), making foods like spinach a good choice.
WHOLE GRAINS: Processing white flour strips away the magnesium-rich germ and bran that is present in whole grains. Whole-wheat bread provides twice the amount of magnesium offered by white bread.

Recommended Dosage

AGE (YEARS), MALE (mg/DAY), FEMALE (mg/DAY)
1-3, 80, 80
4-8, 130, 130
9-13, 240, 240
14-18, 410, 360
19-30, 400, 310
31+, 420, 320

Warnings

Sustained health requires an adequate supply of magnesium. If you do have a deficiency, your doctor may prescribe you supplements. Make sure to follow the proper dosage, while avoiding frequent use of laxatives or antacids containing magnesium. Too much magnesium intake can be similar to magnesium deficiency and lead to nausea, diarrhea, appetite loss, difficulty breathing, low blood pressure, and irregular heartbeat.

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