Magnesium is vital for cellular health and is needed in over 300 biochemical functions in the body, such as energy metabolism, blood sugar control, nerve function, neurotransmitter release and blood pressure regulation. If you are magnesium deficient then your body will not be functioning at it its optimal performance. At Perth Allied Health Clinic, our team of chiropractors and physiotherapists see many clients visit us who are deficient in magnesium.
Do I need to take magnesium?
Magnesium deficiency is something that is very hard for us to monitor and be aware of, largely due to the fact that the majority of magnesium stored in the body is outside of our blood system. So how do you know if you are magnesium deficient?
Magnesium deficiency causing muscle aches and fatigue is the most classic sign of magnesium deficiency. Magnesium is a required element of muscle relaxation, and without it our muscles would be in a constant state of contraction. Calcium, on the other hand, signals muscles to contract.
You may also experience symptoms such as difficulty concentrating, high levels of personal stress, anxiety and depression, chronic fatigue, constipation, fibromyalgia, heart attack and hormone imbalance.
How can I control my magnesium levels?
- Reduce your daily sugar intake due. Refined sugar is a zero magnesium nutrient and it also causes the body to excrete magnesium through the kidneys. Some common refined sugar products to avoid are pastries, cakes, desserts and lollies.
- Increase your vegetable intake to >3 servings per day. Organic is the best choice when selecting your vegetables from your local farmers market. Some great vegetables high in magnesium that you can eat are almonds, avocado, bananas, cashews, dark chocolate, goats cheese, pumpkin seeds, salmon and spinach.
- Reduce your alcohol consumption – alcohol lowers magnesium available to the cells by increasing the excretion of magnesium by the kidneys. In studies, clinical magnesium deficiency was found in 30% of alcoholics. Increased alcohol intake also contributes to decreased efficiency of the digestive system, as well as Vitamin D deficiency, both of which can contribute to low magnesium levels
- Controlling your stress levels can help limit magnesium deficiency as low magnesium tends to magnify the stress reaction, worsening the problem. In studies, adrenaline and cortisol, byproducts of the “fight or flight” reaction associated with stress and anxiety, were associated with decreased magnesium.
- Using prescription medication like antibiotics and diuretics in high amounts reduces magnesium levels in the body by increasing magnesium loss through excretion by the kidneys.
Should I take a magnesium supplement?
Magnesium supplementation is also another way to provide your body with the necessary magnesium levels for you to function at your best daily. If you are considering supplementation, speak to your healthcare professional to see if this is a good option for you.
If you would like further information, contact Perth Allied Health Clinic today.