While we hear quite a bit about the importance of Calcium, we don't hear much about Magnesium, an essential mineral that roughly 80% of us are deficient in.
According to Dr. Mark Hyman, Magnesium should be called The Relaxation Mineral. "Anything that is tight, irritable, crampy, and stiff -- whether it is a body part or an even a mood -- is a sign of magnesium deficiency. It is an antidote to stress, the most powerful relaxation mineral available, and it can help improve your sleep."
So what does tight, irritable and crampy translate to in medical terms? Magnesium plays a major role in the action of your heart muscle, the creation of ATP (energy) in your cells, the proper formation of bones and teeth, the relaxation of blood vessels and the regulation of blood sugar levels. According to recent studies, the health benefits of Magnesium have been grossly underestimated. Magnesium can greatly benefit those who suffer from:
* Atrial Fibrillation
* Cardiovascular Disease
* Type 2 Diabetes
Unfortunately a simple lab test is not the best way to measure Magnesium levels. So, being on the lookout for some common symptoms of Magnesium deficiency might
be the best way to diagnose yourself. Some common health issues associated with Magnesium deficiency include:
* Coronary Spasm
* Abnormal Hearth Rhythms
* Muscle Cramps or Twitches
* Kidney Stones
* Chronic Fatigue
* Irritable Bladder
Do you crave chocolate….more than the average human? Chocolate cravings are often a sign of Magnesium deficiency, as the cocoa bean contains a very high level of the mineral. One of the best ways to get a healthy level of Magnesium is actually through your diet. The whole foods with the highest levels of Magnesium are:
* Collard Greens
* Pumpkin Seeds
* Flax Seed
* Almond Butter
* Dandelion Greens
Of course, there are also some great Magnesium supplements on the market. My two favorite sources of Magnesium in supplement form are Magnesium Glycinate and Magnesium Citrate (most will benefit from 400-1000mg per day). With supplements it's important to remember that many vitamins and minerals work synergistically. So when supplementing with Magnesium, remember that you need adequate amounts of Vitamin D3 (latest studies suggest 5000 iu's per day) and selenium in order to properly absorb the mineral.