Magnesium is an essential mineral for our overall health and proper biological function. It is the fourth most abundant mineral in the body, where there are more than 3,750 magnesium-binding sites on human proteins.
It determined the normal function of more than 300 enzymes, so it affects multiple biochemical processes, essential for the proper metabolic function, such as:
- Function of the muscles and nerves
- Relaxation of blood vessels
- Regulation of blood sugar and insulin sensitivity
- Creation of ATP (adenosine triphosphate)
- Proper formation of bones and teeth
In the case of low levels of magnesium in the body, one experience serious health problems, as the cellular metabolic function is deteriorated, including migraine headaches, fibromyalgia, depression, anxiety, heart disease, sudden cardiac death, and death.
It is also vital for the detoxification processes in the body, including the synthesis of glutathione. Moreover, the body needs magnesium to optimize mitochondria, which is vital for cancer prevention and general athletic and energy performance.
Mitochondria are organelles within the cells, which produce ATO, or the energy all body organs need in order to function normally.
Studies have found that the mitochondrial dysfunction leads to severe health issues, so you need to supply the nutrients it needs in order to prevent diseases, support overall health, and boost your exercise performance.
The mitochondrial researcher Rhonda Patrick, Ph.D., claims that magnesium is vital for mitochondrial health, mostly due to the fact that the oxidative capacity depends on mitochondria`s ability to produce energy within the cells.
How Much Magnesium is actually needed?
A hundred years ago, the soil was rich in nutrients, and people received nearly 500 mg of magnesium from daily diet, and nowadays, they get only 150-300 mg daily.
The RDA is around 310-420 mg daily, depending on age and sex, but according to researchers, one needs 600-900 mg for optimal health.
Dr. Carolyn Dean says that the intestinal reaction can be used as a marker for the proper dose. You should begin with a dose of 200 mg of magnesium citrate daily and gradually increase the dose until you experience loose stools.
When it comes to supplementation, the best option is magnesium threonate, which penetrates cell membranes, including the mitochondria and blood-brain barrier.
If you decide to additionally increase the magnesium levels with supplements you should learn how nutrients affect and interact with each other.
You should maintain a balance between magnesium, calcium, vitamin K2, and vitamin D, as they work synergically, and any imbalance might raise the risk of heart attacks, stroke, and vitamin D toxicity.
The healthiest ratio between magnesium and calcium is 1:1, but since our diets are richer in calcium, the supplemental magnesium might be two times greater than calcium.
Dr. Kate Rheaume-Bleue advises that for every 1,000 IU’s of vitamin D you take, you need from about 100 micrograms (mcg) of K2. Finally, you need to check your vitamin D levels twice annually in order to find your own dosage.
Magnesium deficiency is most often a result of a heavily processed diet since the mineral resides in chlorophyll molecule. Moreover, its levels are also reduced as a result of stress, lack of sleep,
prescription drug use (fluoride, statins, antibiotics), and alcohol consumption. This explains why even 50-80% of Americans are deficient in magnesium.
The earliest signs of magnesium deficiency include appetite loss, muscle spasms, nausea, migraines, fatigue, headaches, weakness, and vomiting.
Chronic magnesium deficiency causes issues like coronary spasms, seizures, numbness, tingling, abnormal heart rhythms, and personality changes.
Therefore, you should consume more magnesium-rich foods. One of the best ways to optimize your magnesium levels is through the consumption of dark-green leafy veggies.
The richest sources of magnesium among this group are:
- Collard greens
- Turnip Greens
- Bok Choy
- Beet Greens
- Swiss Chard
- Romaine Lettuce
- Brussels Sprouts
The following foods are also rich in magnesium:
- Fatty fish
- Raw cacao nibs and/or unsweetened cocoa powder
- Fruits and berries
- Seeds and nuts
- Herbs and spices (cumin, parsley, mustard seeds, fennel)