Monday, December 30, 2019

Signs of Magnesium Deficiency and How to Fit It Naturally

As an integrative doctor, one of the things I’m acutely tuned into is nutrient deficiencies. I cannot overstate how important it is to give your body the nutrition it needs. Several times over my career, I saw firsthand how reversing a deficiency saved patient lives.

One of the nutrients I’m increasingly concerned we don’t get enough of is magnesium.

In addition to being one of my Awesome Foursome nutrients for heart health, magnesium is a vital player everywhere in the body. More than 300 different enzymatic reactions depend on it.

How Magnesium Helps Maintain Your Health

Don’t worry; I won’t inundate  you with all of the reasons why it’s important to keep your magnesium level up. But I will share a handful of important ones…

  •     Magnesium helps keep your heart beating in a predictable rhythm
  •     Magnesium regulates your electrolyte balance, which keeps nerves and muscles working normally
  •     Magnesium helps the body absorb calcium, which keeps bones strong
  •     Magnesium is needed to produce glutathione, the body’s master antioxidant
  •     Magnesium helps regulate the breakdown of sugars and fats during digestion and manage your blood sugar level
  •     Magnesium is involved in the synthesis of DNA and RNA

Perhaps most importantly, though, magnesium helps raise cellular energy and vibration. That’s because it’s a vital nutrient in producing ATP, which is literally the “energy of life.” This is why it’s one of my Awesome Foursome and why I take it every day, without fail.

5 Common Symptoms of Magnesium Deficiency

It’s easy to see why you don’t want to become deficient. Yet far too many of us are.

Unfortunately, you can’t rely on a simple blood test to know if you have a magnesium deficiency. Only a small percentage of the total magnesium in your body circulates in the blood. The rest is in your cells and other tissues.

That doesn’t mean, though that your body won’t send you signals that your levels are low. It often does. Here are a few to be on the lookout for…

Muscle Cramps

One of the great benefits of magnesium is that it helps us relax, muscles especially.

Healthy muscles—the kind that work when and how we need them to—depend on having the right balance of magnesium, calcium, and potassium inside muscle cells. When magnesium levels are low, too much calcium gets inside. That overstimulates the cells and makes them jumpy.  So, if you’re prone to charley horses or muscle twitches, a magnesium deficiency could be why. Every year I go fly fishing in the Bahamas, walking the flats sometimes several miles a day. Taking magnesium at bedtime has been a lifesaver for preventing cramps while I sleep!
Heart Palpitations

Fluttering, racing, and skipping beats are a few of the ways people tend to describe heart palpitations, which admittedly are one of the scarier signs you may be low on magnesium. Again, it’s important to recognize that the heart is really just a big muscle—and it needs a lot of magnesium to make sure its cells contract in a smooth, rhythmic way. A deficiency can lead to some unsettling and even dangerous changes.

If you feel palpitations, be sure to get them checked out. Magnesium deficiencies are just one cause. You’ll want to rule out more serious cardiac issues.
High Blood Pressure

When it comes to blood pressure, magnesium’s biggest job is to relax the smooth muscle cells in artery walls. This helps the arteries dilate and stay flexible. When the opposite happens, and arteries become tense and rigid, blood pressure goes up (along with your heart attack risk). Gradually rising blood pressure can be a sign of many things, low magnesium levels among them.

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