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Magnesium

    magnesium

    As the fourth most common mineral in the human body, magnesium is distributed through most organ systems.[1] The average human body contains 25 grams magnesium.[2] However, dietary surveys regularly show many Americans get an inadequate magnesium intake.[3]

    Magnesium’s prevalence occurs because magnesium plays an important role in over 300 biochemical reactions. Most of the body’s magnesium, about half, is stored in bones, where it keeps them strong.[1]

    Aside from this purpose, magnesium predominantly participates in reactions that ensure proper organ and cell function. This includes promoting a regular heartbeat, encouraging muscle and nerve cells to work correctly, managing blood sugar levels, and managing blood pressure.[1]

    Magnesium is also required for creating energy and protein molecules.[1]

    Magnesium is commonly found in laxatives and antacids because it speeds stool movement through the GI tract and neutralizes stomach acid.[2]

    Ongoing research reveals exercise induces the body to redistribute magnesium to where it is most needed. Many athletes who regularly participate in intense exercise often have diminished magnesium because it is excreted in sweat and urine.[4] Consequently, many athletic supplements include magnesium to ensure athletes have adequate magnesium.

    Recent research indicates magnesium supplements raise testosterone levels.

    The relevant study assessed how magnesium affects testosterone levels in both sedentary and athletic individuals. Individuals in both groups took 10 mg magnesium per kg of body weight every day for 4 weeks. Free and total testosterone levels went up in both groups, but the increases were more significant for the athlete group.[5]

    Furthermore, magnesium participates in sleep regulation, making it a natural remedy for people with sleep issues.[6] A 2010 study found an association between magnesium levels and sleep quality.[7]

    In a more thorough study, older adults took magnesium for 20 days before taking a sleep test. Researchers concluded magnesium increased slow wave sleep, the deepest non-REM sleep stages.[8] A similar study used a magnesium, zinc, and melatonin supplement. This supplement improved total sleep time, sleep quality, and next-morning alertness.[9]

    Additionally, people who get migraines sometimes use magnesium to reduce migraine occurrence and alleviate pain and other migraine symptoms.

    A study published in 2008 evaluated magnesium’s effects on frequency and severity of migraines without aura. That is the most common type of migraine.[10] Thirty patients took 600 mg magnesium each day, and 10 patients took a placebo. Those taking the placebo had higher migraine frequency and severity than those taking magnesium. Scientists doing this study also noted increased blood flow in several brain sections after magnesium supplementation.[11]

    Magnesium minimizes some symptoms of premenstrual syndrome. Women who took 250 mg magnesium for several days before their period noted 33% to 35% decreased in PMS distress.[12]

    Side effects linked to magnesium intake are mostly gastrointestinal issues. Some people taking magnesium report diarrhea, upset stomach, nausea, or vomiting.[2]

    One patient taking magnesium to treat premenstrual syndrome experienced vertigo as a side effect of the treatment.[12]

    Kidneys functioning below the optimum level have difficulty excreting magnesium. Consequently, people with kidney problems should not intake excess magnesium.[2]

    Incredibly high magnesium intake can lead to dangerously low blood pressure, decreased heart rate, difficulty breathing. In the most severe cases, magnesium overdose causes the heart to stop beating, coma, or death.[13] But, magnesium dosages this high usually occur with excessive intake of magnesium-containing laxatives or antacids.[1]

    Side effects linked to magnesium intake are mostly gastrointestinal issues. Some people taking magnesium report diarrhea, upset stomach, nausea, or vomiting.[2]

    One patient taking magnesium to treat premenstrual syndrome experienced vertigo as a side effect of the treatment.[12]

    Kidneys functioning below the optimum level have difficulty excreting magnesium. Consequently, people with kidney problems should not intake excess magnesium.[2]

    Incredibly high magnesium intake can lead to dangerously low blood pressure, decreased heart rate, difficulty breathing. In the most severe cases, magnesium overdose causes the heart to stop beating, coma, or death.[13] But, magnesium dosages this high usually occur with excessive intake of magnesium-containing laxatives or antacids.[1]

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