Have you ever woken up in the middle of the night with severe muscle cramps in your leg and severe pain that renders you unable to breathe? This is a classic symptom of magnesium deficiency. Magnesium is an element widely spread on the earth and in our bodies. It is considered the 9th more common element in the planet and the 7th more common element in our bodies. It is a highly active element and can’t be found by itself on the earth or in the body. Magnesium is involved in over 300 chemical reactions in the organism. To understand magnesium better, we should understand that magnesium offers different functions according to the element that bounds to it. In the body, 60% of magnesium is located in the bones, the rest is inside the cells, and only 1% is located in the blood. The most common form of magnesium is bound to phosphate to activate ATP, which is the primary energy source in all body cells.
We should focus more on magnesium deficiency because it is a constantly overlooked health condition. Magnesium deficiency affects 15% of the general population and interferes with the patient’s daily life. The main problem with magnesium is that its levels can appear to be normal in a blood test in patients suffering from magnesium deficiency. Keep on reading to know why and how to solve this problem.
1Why magnesium and what’s its benefits?
There are general benefits for magnesium, for instance:
○ Helps with asthma
It relaxes the bronchial muscles, which improves the quality of breathing.
○ Supports bone health and prevents osteoporosis
60% of magnesium is found in bones, and it helps with the absorption and deposition of calcium in the bones.
○ Boosts energy
Magnesium initiates enzyme reactions responsible for energy production.
○ Decreases premenstrual syndrome (PMS) symptoms
Research shows that magnesium helps to relieve premenstrual symptoms such as bloating, mood swings, cramps, and headaches as it controls muscle contractions and nerve functions.
Magnesium benefits differ according to the element that binds it. There are many forms of magnesium and here are some of them and their benefits:
○ Magnesium citrate
It is a mixture of magnesium and citric acid and is better to use it at night to improve the quality of sleep and enhance relaxation. Magnesium citrate pills are used as laxatives to treat constipation and before major surgery to empty the gut. It should not be used as a daily supplement because it interferes with calcium function in the muscle and dysregulates iron functions.
○ Magnesium glycinate
It is a combination of magnesium and glycine, an amino acid. It is the most bioavailable form of magnesium, and it is the best choice if you need a daily supplement to treat magnesium deficiency.
○ Magnesium threonate
○ Magnesium malate
It has magnesium and malic acid, and it is used to treat fibromyalgia and muscle pain. It also enhances energy production and detoxification as a part of malic acid ability to infiltrate the mitochondria with glucose and other substances.
○ Magnesium sulfate
It is an inorganic salt, and it is known as Epsom salt. It can be used internally in pills to treat hypertension and prevent seizures in pregnant women with eclampsia and pre-eclampsia. Externally, it is used as bath salt to draw toxins from the body, ease aches and pain and to promote relaxation.
○ Magnesium carbonate
It contains 45% of magnesium and used as antacids to neutralize stomach acid, reduces heartburn, and improves digestion.
○ Magnesium taurate
It comprises magnesium and the amino acid glycine. It reduces the excitation of the nervous system and prevents migraines.
○ Liquid magnesium
It is a magnesium chloride salt dissolved in water, and it is a good option for those who don’t tolerate pills.