Are You Magnesium Deficient?

Freshly roasted pumpkin seedsOne important mineral we do not think about when it comes to our diet is magnesium. We worry about our calcium and our iron levels, yet magnesium seems to get glanced over. Unfortunately this is a bad thing since many people are magnesium deficient without realizing it. As many as 80% of Americans need a boost in this vital mineral.

Just how important is magnesium? It helps over 300 metabolic processes in our bodies and is sometimes called the master mineral. Magnesium plays a huge part in helping to regulate blood sugar, promote proper bowel movements, and relaxation of the blood vessels. Magnesium also promotes the formations of bones, teeth, and more. Magnesium has also been found to be beneficial in treating fibromyalgia, diabetes, PMS, heart disease, and aging. With all these great benefits, magnesium is not a mineral that should be ignored.

Note that older individuals are at a higher risk of being magnesium deficient because absorption decreases with age. A doctor can perform a test to see if you are deficient in this mineral, but you can also look for symptoms yourself. Do you have any of the following:

  • Calcium deficiency
  • Loss of appetite
  • Headache
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Poor heart health
  • Weakness
  • Muscle cramps
  • Tremors
  • Anxiety
  • High blood pressure
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion or poor Memory

 Any of these symptoms could be from a direct relation of being deficient in magnesium.

If you are deficient, there are several magnesium supplements available. However, like most vitamins and minerals, it is best to get them from food, rather than a pill. If you do take a magnesium supplement, it is wise to consult your doctor first, since it is important to balance out magnesium supplements with calcium supplements and other vitamins. Magnesium can be found in a wide variety of foods, especially whole foods.

Try adding more dark greens and raw nuts to your diet, such as spinach, almonds, and cashews. The highest amounts of magnesium are found in seaweed and dried pumpkin seeds.

Who knew one mineral could be responsible for so many things in our health? It just goes to show that good health is all about balance and taking care of ourselves from the inside out.

 

Story Credit 1, 2, Image Credit: Freshly roasted pumpkin seeds by Heather. Used under Creative Commons license.

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