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Essential minerals: The benefits of magnesium

By on Oct 4, 2012

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Health benefits of magnesiumThe health benefits and the actions of magnesium have been well documented recently. I have talked to various nutritional experts who are using more magnesium supplements in their practice in recent years. The updated RDA (recommended daily allowance) is 375mg a day. According to data produced by Lamberts Healthcare 72% of women and 42% of men in the UK fail to consume enough magnesium.  Read on for more about the heart benefits of magnesium…

These numbers are quite staggering although they make sense once we look at some of the signs of magnesium deficiency. Many common health conditions can be attributed to a lack of magnesium in the diet. Magnesium deficiency can cause:

  •         Muscle Cramps
  •         Migraines
  •         Fatigue
  •         Weak bones……osteoporosis
  •         PMS symptoms
  •         Hypertension
  •         Insomnia
  •         Constipation
  •         Mild Depression

As you can see these symptoms are very varied, which indicates that magnesium is involved in many bodily processes and underlines how important it is to us.  The good news is that magnesium is found in many foods, although not all of this can be absorbed.

 

Foods that contain high amounts of magnesium:

  •         Flax seeds
  •         Whole grains
  •         Brazil nuts
  •         Spinach and other green leafy vegetables
  •         Okra
  •         Mung beans

 

Refined foods such as white rice, white flour and white bread have considerably less magnesium than whole foods. A diet high in refined and processed food will inevitably lead to magnesium deficiency as well as other health conditions.

Magnesium supplements area available in many forms, but the organic forms (citrate, gluconate, malate) are generally better absorbed. The daily dose can vary between 150mg to 600mg a day, although higher doses should be taken under the supervision of a nutritionist. Mild side effects of magnesium supplementation include loose stools, which usually only lasts for a few days. This is because magnesium has a detoxifying action on the body. If you are taking higher doses, you should split the dose throughout the day to maximise absorption.

We hope you enjoyed our health article “essential minerals: The benefits of magnesium.