Magnesium is one of the few essential minerals that our bodies need for healthy functioning besides potassium, calcium, manganese, iron, selenium, fluoride, and iodine. Magnesium as a mineral is indispensable for facilitating the carrying out of various vital bodily functions and yet a great majority of individuals fail to realize the importance of including sufficient food items in everyday diets that are rich in the mineral. It is estimated over 80% of the American populace are deficient in magnesium. The mineral holds several health benefits for the body including the maintenance of normal heart rate, and the proper functioning of the nerves and muscles.
Magnesium and Your Health
Then again, magnesium checks inflammation, and facilitates over 350 chemical processes within the body, helps in controlling blood sugar levels, and in boosting up the immune system. Magnesium along with vitamin D has a vital role to play in preventing and/or delaying the onset of osteoporosis in older adults-a condition which debilitates the bones causing these to break. Chronic deficiency of magnesium may eventually cause unremitting ailments including but not limited to atherosclerosis, depression, migraine-headaches, anxiety, obesity, high blood pressure, heart disease, brain-stroke, asthma, and diabetes mellitus.
And what are most common symptoms or signs which will establish that you’re magnesium deficient? You’ll feel tired more often, have a tendency to lose sleep, feel extremely anxious, suffer nagging headaches, experience excruciating muscle spasms and increased heart rhythms as well as undergo other health issues.
Sourcing Magnesium from Food Items
Unfortunately, our bodies are incapable of manufacturing magnesium on their own and so we’re totally reliant on food items for meeting the body’s need for the mineral. Now, magnesium can be sourced from an extensive array of organic and plant-based foods. These food items include leafy vegetables which are dark green like kale, collard greens, Swiss chard, baby spinach, and broccoli.
Sunflower seeds, cashew nuts, flaxseed, pecans, pine nuts, almonds, and pumpkin seeds are very good sources of magnesium. Species of fish like halibut, tuna, wild salmon, mackerel, trout, and sardines will supply a high amount of magnesium apart from omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin-D. Legumes like soybeans, lentils, chickpeas, white beans, kidney beans, and black beans are health foods that are laden with magnesium.
Other foods and food items that you should consume on a regular basis for catering to your body’s magnesium requirements include bananas, avocado, figs, fat-free or low-fat yoghurt, and dark chocolates.
Magnesium from Supplement
Majority of general practitioners who routinely carry out tests to determine levels of magnesium in the bloodstream of their patients have found that a great many of them to be lacking in the mineral. These physicians, apart from advising their patients to consume foods imbibed with magnesium, also suggest them to go for dietary supplements fortified with the mineral. The supplements can either be taken in the form of pills and tablets or taken topically.
Magnesium malate, magnesium theonate, magnesium glycinate, and magnesium citrate, magnesium dimalate are some supplements that are approved by nutritionists and health experts. Showering with Epsom salts (just a cup will suffice) once or twice weekly also goes a long way in getting relief from a plethora of health problems. However, before you can get started on supplements, make it a point to get in touch with your doctor.
Image credit: Peggy Greb (Wikipedia)