Magnesium is one of the most essential minerals in our diets. A magnesium deficiency is likely to harm our health, as the mineral is involved in over 600 enzymatic reactions in the body.
The causes of magnesium deficiency are extremely varied and may arise from a multitude of factors. GIT disorders, frequent alcohol consumption, high blood calcium levels, uncontrolled diabetes, inadequate dietary intake and depleted magnesium in the soil can all decrease the body's magnesium levels.
Do you think you are magnesium deficient? Find out the most common symptoms of magnesium deficiency, and how low levels can negatively affect your health.
Symptoms of Magnesium Deficiency
Commonly underdiagnosed, it is estimated that over 68% of U.S. adults are deficient in magnesium. If you are suffering from these symptoms, you may be magnesium deficient:
- Flu-Like Symptoms: Early signs of magnesium deficiency are like that of the common flu. You may experience nausea, vomiting, fatigue, loss of appetite, and a body-ache.
- Numbness and Tingling: Since magnesium is required for the nerves to function, you may experience numbness in your hands and feet if you are chronically magnesium deficient.
- Migraines and headaches: Frequent and intense headaches can signal magnesium deficiency.
Magnesium Deficiency: Effects on Health
1) Muscle Cramps and Contractions:
Chronic magnesium deficiency can increase the intensity and frequency of muscle cramps, as the mineral is involved in relaxing your muscles. If you commonly experience leg cramps, back pain, or intense PMS cramps, you may be suffering from low magnesium levels.
2) Sleep Disorders:
Magnesium plays a vital role in regulating our sleep patterns and hormones. Magnesium assists in promoting a healthy circadian rhythm, and helps to regulate melatonin, which is the main hormone involved in promoting sleep. Magnesium deficiency can impact your sleep patterns, and induce or intensify an underlying sleep disorder. If you struggle to sleep at night, it is time to boost your magnesium levels!
3) Depression & Mood Swings:
Magnesium is required for the release of hormones such as dopamine and serotonin, which are important mood regulators. Therefore, it comes to no surprise that low magnesium levels can increase the risk of depression by a staggering 22% (2). Low magnesium levels can also cause frequent mood swings and irritable behavior.
4) Anxiety & Stress:
If you often feel stressed, anxious, and nervous, you may want to consider boosting your magnesium levels. As magnesium is required to calm the mind and body, depleted levels may cause irritability and stress. Along with meditation and exercise, using a magnesium oil can help relax your mind and bust the stress away.
5) High Blood Pressure and Heart Diseases:
Magnesium is crucial for optimal heart health. As magnesium is involved in relaxing and dilating your blood vessels, low levels can increase blood constriction over time. High blood pressure, or hypertension, can increase your risk of developing a cardiovascular disease.
Treatment of magnesium deficiency is simple. Applying a topical magnesium oil to the skin may help boost magnesium to normal levels. If you find that applying magnesium oil stings, there are a variety of methods you can utilize to decrease the itching sensation. Other ways to boost magnesium levels include consuming magnesium-rich foods, such as kelp, chard, almonds, whole grains, dark chocolate, and oily fish. By frequently consuming magnesium-rich foods, and applying topical magnesium, you can quickly bring your levels up.
Magnesium deficiency can negatively harm your health in a variety of ways. The mentioned effects are only a few of many! If you are suffering from a deficiency, it is time to take action and increase your levels to help prevent an exhaustive range of health conditions and live a long, healthy life.