How can Magnesium Benefit My Health?

benefits of magnesium
A 2015 study found that about 50% of Americans are consuming less than the recommended amount of magnesium each day. Other common deficiencies include calcium, essential fatty acids, iron, and vitamins A, B12, C, and D. You may already know what you are missing by not getting enough of certain nutrients. Calcium, for example, is crucial to bone strength. But you may not know what magnesium provides you. Referred to as the forgotten electrolyte, magnesium’s role in our body is at times underappreciated and unrecognized.

What does Magnesium do?

Magnesium is a helper for the rest of your body. It is involved in over 600 chemical reactions that occur within your body. This includes energy creation, protein formation, gene maintenance, muscle movements, and regulating your nervous system. Beyond magnesium’s role as a chemical helper, researchers have attempted to connect it to numerous other benefits, but results have remained inconclusive. Potential benefits needing further research include magnesium’s impact on: Fortunately, low levels of magnesium often do not result in immediate symptoms. Like many health concerns though, the problems become more apparent when the issue goes on for long periods and becomes chronic. If you are not consuming enough magnesium you may be increasing your risk for high blood pressure, osteoporosis, and type 2 diabetes.

Should I Supplement My Magnesium?

Though magnesium is present in plenty of foods, it often contributes only marginally to the recommended daily amount of magnesium you should be consuming. The National Institute of Health lists pumpkin seeds and chia seeds as the only foods with greater than 20% of your daily magnesium per serving. For that reason, patients may consider supplementing their magnesium. It’s best to get nutrients from food, rather than supplements, but in many cases, this may not be possible without drastically changing your diet. Talk to your provider if supplementing your magnesium would be right for you.

Magnesium Glycinate vs Magnesium Citrate

The two most common types of magnesium supplements are Magnesium Citrate and Magnesium Glycinate. Magnesium citrate mixes magnesium with the organic salt, citrate, to create an absorptive supplement. Patients may avoid magnesium citrate for its light laxative effect. It’s helpful for patients with constipation concerns, but others will want to consult with their provider before taking it. On the other hand, magnesium glycinate is often well tolerated by the body. The addition of glycine in this supplement can promote calmness and sleep quality. For this reason, magnesium glycinate is typically a popular choice.