We all know the importance of calcium and iron to human health and the benefits they bring as dietary supplements. However, often overlooked, is another element that is essential to biological function and can improve one’s health many ways? Magnesium, magnesium is the forgotten child of essential elements to a healthy diet. It’s involved, it’s necessary to hundreds of chemical processes in the human body, yet it has mostly disappeared from our diets. You are more likely than not, magnesium deficient. Because of this your body and mind are not performing as well as they could be. You’re missing out on the powerful benefits magnesium has to offer. Let’s discuss some of those now.
1.Magnesium prevents cardiovascular diseases.
Low magnesium levels are the single largest contributor to cardiovascular disease, even more so than cholesterol or saturated fat. This has been confirmed by several recent studies and underscores how critical magnesium is to overall health. While you should strive for good cholesterol numbers and minimize fat in your diet, the single most effective thing you can do to mitigate risk of cardiovascular disease is to ensure you’re getting sufficient dietary magnesium.
2.Magnesium regulates high blood pressure.
Recent research has found that magnesium plays a significant role in regulating blood pressure. The European Journal of Clinical Nutrition conducted a meta-analysis of all the research on the relationship between magnesium and blood pressure and found that dietary intake of magnesium of at least 370mg per day lowered blood pressure significantly. There results point to magnesium being an important dietary supplement in preventing hypertension.
3.Magnesium prevents osteoporosis.
One of the many roles that magnesium plays in our body is to facilitate absorption of calcium. Magnesium is the magic ingredient that that turns calcium into strong and hard bones. One cannot do its job without the other and deficient magnesium levels are as much a risk factor for osteoporosis as deficient calcium levels. Ensuring you’re getting enough magnesium will do as much to prevent osteoporosis as supplementing your dietary calcium.
4.Magnesium lowers risk of diabetes.
Specifically, magnesium intake around 350mg-400mg per day significantly lowers the risk of Type 2 Diabetes; studies have found that Type 2 diabetes risk can be lowered by as much as 47% by supplemental magnesium. Magnesium regulates blood sugar in the body, by definition, protecting one from the risk of diabetes.
5.Magnesium is essential to a good night’s sleep.
Magnesium has been shown to be effective in treating a wide range of psychological issue from depression to insomnia. Magnesium is a critical element in muscle relaxation, which is itself critical to many psychological processes. In sleep for example, magnesium’s role as muscle relaxant allows for a smooth transition into and through the stages of sleep. Insomnia is a symptom of magnesium defiance, one among many, however this symptom will reduce you quality of life quicker than almost any other. A good night’s sleep requires a certain amount of magnesium, if you don’t have enough you will be tossing and turning all night, it’s as simple as that.
6.Magnesium can reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression.
As mentioned above, magnesium is extremely important to one’s mental health. In fact, the body uses more magnesium in times of psychological stress. For a person who is already magnesium deficient, this can deplete the body’s reserves and lead to anxiety and depression, and it does for many people. Magnesium, like dopamine, is one of those essential resources your brain needs to function properly. When your brain has to deal with stressful situations, and it doesn’t have enough resources to do that, those situations will be worse. In how magnesium has effect on the brain, it effects our decisions and life outcomes. If you want to live a good life, give your brain all the resources it needs to function at its best.
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