Why is all this fuss about magnesium?
Magnesium is a mineral used by all organs in your body, especially your heart, muscles and kidneys.
Fatigue or weakness, abnormal heart rhythms or even muscle spasms and eye twitches, may well be due to your low levels of magnesium.
If you have recently had a blood test, you might assume it would show a magnesium deficiency. But only 1% of magnesium in your body is distributed in your blood, making a simple sample of magnesium from a serum magnesium blood test not very useful.
You should know that most of magnesium is stored in your bones and organs, where it is used for many biological functions. Yet, it is quite possible to be deficient and not know it, which is why magnesium deficiency has been dubbed the “invisible deficiency.”
There are estimates that up to 80% of the Americans are not getting enough magnesium and may be deficient. Other research shows that only about 25% of the US adults are getting the recommended daily amount (RDA), which is 310-320 milligrams (mg) for women and 400-420 for men.
Consuming even this boundary amount is “just enough to ward off outright deficiency,” according to Dr. Carolyn Dean, a medical and naturopathic doctor.
Magnesium deficiency may trigger 22 medical conditions
Magnesium is often thought of primarily as of a mineral for your heart and bone health, but this is misleading. Researchers have now detected 3,751 magnesium-binding sites on human proteins, indicating that its role in human health and disease may have been vastly underestimated!
Magnesium is also found in more than 300 different enzymes in your body, and plays a role in your body’s detoxification processes, helping to prevent damage from environmental chemicals, heavy metals, and other toxins. In addition, magnesium is necessary for:
- Activating muscles and nerves
- Creating energy in your body by activating adenosine triphosphate (ATP)
- Helping digest proteins, carbohydrates, and fats
- Serving as a building block for RNA and DNA synthesis
- Acting as a precursor for neurotransmitters like serotonin
Dr. Dean has studied and written about magnesium for more than 15 years. She points out 22 medical concerns that magnesium deficiency triggers or causes, all of which have been scientifically proven. They are:
- Anxiety and panic attacks
- Bowel diseases
- Heart disease
- Obstetrics and gynecology (PMS, infertility, and preeclampsia)
- Tooth decay
- Kidney disease
- Musculoskeletal conditions (fibromyalgia, cramps, chronic back pain, etc.)
- Blood clots
- Liver disease
- Nerve problems
- Raynaud’s syndrome
Early signs of magnesium deficiency include: loss of appetite, headache, nausea, fatigue, and weakness.
An ongoing magnesium deficiency can lead to more serious symptoms, including: numbness and tingling, muscle contractions and cramps, seizures, personality changes, abnormal heart rhythms and coronary spasms.