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Today's Word Is Brought To You By The Letter "M"


The letter M is for MAGNESIUM

Today I want to talk with you about the magical mineral magnesium.

Magnesium is the 2nd most abundant element inside human cells and yet 75% of Americans consume less than the recommended daily allowance on a daily basis.

Are you getting enough magnesium?  Not sure?  Read on…..

Magnesium is responsible for regulating over 300 different chemical reactions within the human body.

Over 300 different chemical reactions!!

Do you think adequate intake of magnesium is important?

Magnesium plays a vital role in the production of energy, regulating cholesterol levels, muscle contraction, building DNA and RNA (they carry your genetic blueprints), cell reproduction, building blocks for bone, breaking down sugar and fat, making proteins, enzymes and antioxidants to name a few.

The best way to determine if you are magnesium deficient or not is with a simple blood test.  The blood test takes out a lot of the guess work.  However the blood test only looks at the amount of magnesium circulating in the blood.  Even though your blood test is normal you may still be deficient.  Remember that a good portion of your magnesium is stored within your bones and cells.

Some symptoms that may indicate that your are magnesium deficient include:

–          Muscle cramps/twitches                     -Insomnia                     -Constipation

–          Headaches/migraines                         -Anxiety                         -Fibromyalgia

–          Angina/palpitations                            -Fatigue                          -Osteoporosis

–          Obesity                                                    -Irritable bowel             -High blood pressure

–          Difficulty falling/staying asleep                                                -The list goes on

Low levels of magnesium have been linked to higher levels of inflammation throughout the body.  Remember that chronic inflammation is often the root cause to most of our modern day chronic diseases.

Lifestyle choices which may lead to magnesium deficiency include:

– The consumption of carbonated beverages like soda on a regular basis.

-The consumption of processed foods which are predominately grain based and high in sugar.

-Daily caffeine consumption

-Consuming alcohol on a regular basis

-Inadequate daily consumption of leafy greens, nuts, beans, seafood, and cereal grains (I am not a fan of getting your magnesium from cereal grains).

-Reliance upon certain medications that deplete magnesium levels.  Examples include:  diuretics, heart medications, asthma meds, birth control pills and estrogen replacement therapy to name a few.

-Digestive disorders

As previously stated approximately 75% of Americans are taking in less than the recommended amount of magnesium because of our societies poor food selection.

Most American’s food consumption is S.A.D. (Standard American Diet) which is low in magnesium and other vital nutrients as well as creates an environment that robs the body of its vital magnesium stores.

The S.A.D. diet is abundant in grains (especially gluten containing grains like wheat), sugar, dairy and fatty meats.  These are all low in magnesium and create a pro-inflammatory environment which leaches magnesium from your bones and cells and excretes them out of the body.

End result?  Magnesium deficiency, as well as other vital nutrient deficiencies, and a FREE ticket to chronic disease.

So here are 5 tips to help you avoid magnesium deficiency and to ensure you are taking in ample amounts of magnesium:

  1.  Have a blood test to assess your current levels. Goal is 2.0-2.5 mg/dL.  Remember this only looks at your blood level.  Your blood test may be normal but you may still be deficient because most of your magnesium is located in your bones and cells.  Use your symptoms as a guide as well.
  2. Avoid lifestyle habits that “rob” your body of magnesium.  Control stress levels.  Get 7-8 hours of uninterrupted sleep per night.  Avoid the consumption of processed foods high in grains, dairy, and sugar. Limit your consumption of alcohol and caffeine.
  3. Consume an abundance of magnesium rich foods.  Examples include:  halibut, mackerel, spinach, almonds, cocoa, cashews, beans and pumpkin seeds to name a few.
  4. Ensure proper digestive function.  Use the 4R approach as previously discussed in a past blog to improve digestive health and magnesium absorption.  Remove the offending foods etc., Restore the good guys like digestive enzymes, Reinnoculate with probiotics, and Repair the gut with glutamine and other bowel nourishing nutrients.
  5. Supplement with a good quality Magnesium supplement.  The recommended daily allowance for magnesium is approximately 300 mg yet most individuals are getting far less than this.  The best and most absorbable forms of magnesium are magnesium glycinate, citrate, and aspartate.  I carry a Magnesium glycinate chelate which is easy on the stomach and allows for fantastic absorption.  The amount you need will vary depending on your current health status and levels.  On average most individuals would benefit from consuming between 400 – 1000 mg per day.  You should always consult a knowledgeable healthcare provider before supplementing to ensure that a magnesium supplement is right for you and your health condition (especially if you have kidney or heart disease), you are getting a good quality supplement, you are dosing it appropriately and that it will not interfere with your current medications. 

When taken appropriately magnesium is very safe and beneficial.  However, in some people, magnesium might cause stomach upset, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and other side effects.  Large doses might cause too much magnesium to build up in the body, causing serious side effects including an irregular heartbeat, low blood pressure, confusion, slowed breathing, coma, and death.  It’s always wise to consult with a knowledgeable healthcare provider.

Magnesium is such a wonderful mineral.  It can help ease stress, improve sleep, relax your muscles, improve heart function, reduce constipation, reduce fatigue and many other wonderful benefits.  Magnesium is a natural relaxer.

If you are experiencing some of the symptoms I shared above then magnesium may be your answer.

If you have any questions as to whether or not magnesium may benefit you and your situation feel free to shoot me an email or give me a call!

As always, I hope this information has served you and will take you one step closer to your desired health goals.

Did you like this information?

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Until we chat again remember:  Eat Well, Move Often and Stay Healthy!

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