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Is magnesium really that magnificent? My resounding answer to this is YES!! In the past few months I have had some personal experience with magnesium which have really blown me way. But first before I tell you my stories let me tell you some details about magnesium, an essential mineral for good health.
Magnesium is a mineral and a recent study has indicated that magnesium is involved in a very wide range of processes in the body. In fact the presence or absence of sufficient amounts of magnesium may be a factor in the whole epigenetics picture inside our bodies. Or in other words, a lack of magnesium may cause diseases, locked in our genes, to kick in and cause big problems for our health.
According to Ancient Minerals.com the amount of magnesium in our diets today has gone from
- In the year 1900: 500 mg per day
- Today: 175-225 mg per day2
Risks of Low Magnesium
- Inability of muscles to relax. This can mean backache, neck pain, muscle cramps, restless legs, abnormal heart rhythm, high blood pressure (from artery muscles that will not relax), spasm, tremors, seizures, eye twitches, migraines, bronchial spasms, asthma, Raynaud’s syndrome.
- Neurologic and psychologic symptoms like anxiety, depression, bipolar, poor memory,panic attacks, mood disorders.
- Low magnesium elevates the c-reactive protein, a marker of inflammation that is a good indicator of one’s risk of heart attack or stroke (based from atherosclerosis).
- Stimulates the release of histamine from the mast cells that causing many allergic reactions like hayfever, asthma,, eczema, etc.
- Can cause GI issues like nausea, loss of appetite, vomiting, morning sickness.
Many of these risks explain to me why the GAPS diet makes such a difference in so many symptoms. When a person has leaky gut syndrome they are not absorbing many necessary minerals and vitamins, and one of these is surely magnesium. The GAPS diet not only focuses on healing the gut with diet, it also brings in the regular practice of detoxifying the body. One of these ways of detoxing is with magnesium baths with the use of epsom salts.
How to get more magnesium in your life.
Food that are green contain magnesium because of the chlorophyll present in the plant. Many other foods contain magnesium as well. This list is from Sayer Ji at Green Med Info.
- Rice bran, crude (781 mg)
- Seaweed, agar, dried (770 mg)
- Chives, freeze-dried (640 mg)
- Spice, coriander leaf, dried (694 mg)
- Seeds, pumpkin, dried (535 mg)
- Cocoa, dry powder, unsweetened (499 mg)
- Spices, basil, dried (422 mg)
- Seeds, flaxseed (392 mg)
- Spices, cumin seed (366 mg)
- Nuts, brazilnuts, dried (376 mg)
- Parsley, freeze-dried (372 mg)
- Seeds, sesame meal (346 mg)
- Nut, almond butter (303 mg)
- Nuts, cashew nuts, roasted (273 mg)
- Soy flour, defatted (290 mg)
- Whey, sweet, dried (176 mg)
- Bananas, dehydrated (108 mg)
- Millet, puffed (106 mg)
- Shallots, freeze-dried (104 mg)
- Leeks, freeze-dried (156 mg)
- Fish, salmon, raw (95 mg)
- Onions, dehydrated flakes (92 mg)
- Kale, scotch, raw (88 mg)
Spiced sourdough Muffins The molasses, sucanat, and even the chocolate frosting all add to the magnesium content,
For those with leaky gut syndrome, magnesium does not absorb well orally so often the best way to get magnesium into the body is through lotion or oil that has magnesium flakes added.
Magnesium Lotion Recipe from Modern Alternative Mama.
Magnesium baths. It would be great if we could all bathe in the Dead Sea but since we can’t epsom salts will do the job.
Ancient Minerals has high quality magnesium salts available through Amazon. (Free shipping for prime members).
Precautions for Magnesium
- If you are taking an antibiotic, a calcium blocker (Verapamil, Procardia, Cardizem, ), a muscle relaxant, a diuretic, or other medication it is wise to look at this list from Web MD and consult your MD before taking supplemental magnesium.
- Magnesium supplements can cause nausea, cramps, and diarrhea. Magnesium supplements often cause softening of stool.
- People with diabetes, intestinal disease, heart disease or kidney disease should not take magnesium before speaking with their health care provider.
My Personal Experience
We started taking magnesium here at our house in the summer. At that point my husband and I were the only ones taking it. In September I put my 8 year old daughter on it. Within 2 days of taking magnesium malate, an oral form, my daughter who was still wetting the bed at nights with some frequency, stopped completely. We no longer even need to get her up at night.
My oldest daughter was having migraines from the time she was 11 or so until she turned 14. At one point she took a magnesium supplement and when she was faithful with it she had much less migraines. When she went gluten free the migraines stopped altogether. I believe they stopped because her body was able to absorb magnesium again from food with the gluten factor out.
My mother in law lives with my family for the past 5 years. She is a very stable type 2 diabetic with atherosclerosis. She is now 82 years old. Her memory is not always the best but she has been very able to interact with us and care for herself. In the past 2 months I saw a sharp decline in her short term memory where she would even forget what she had just said to us. I put her on magnesium a week ago and within 2 days she was back to her old self of several months ago. She no longer repeats herself in a simple conversation. It is good to have her back with what we are used to.
We have been taking Magnesium Malate as advised by a doctor of naturopathy. I hope to start using the magnesium oil as well in a lotion form soon.
Magnesium supplementation is a relatively cheap and simple intervention to try. It has very few potential side effects. If you are wondering if it might help you, give it a try.
For more info:
Disclaimer: I am not prescribing or treating but simply sharing my research and experiences. Please make your own decisions based on consultations with health practitioners of your choice.