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Do You Need To Supplement Magnesium?
Beth Ley Knotts, Ph.D.
Magnesium is the fourth most abundant mineral in the body. Approximately 50% of total body magnesium is found in bone. The other half is found predominantly inside cells of body tissues and organs, with only 1% found in the blood. Magnesium is important for sustaining healthy blood vessels, producing energy, and maintaining healthy nerve and muscle function.

Magnesium is needed for more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body. It helps maintain normal muscle and nerve function, keeps heart rhythm steady, supports a healthy immune system, and keeps bones strong. Magnesium also helps regulate blood sugar levels, promotes normal blood pressure, and is known to be involved in energy metabolism and protein synthesis.

Magnesium supports healthy blood pressure within normal ranges and healthy cardiovascular function. Magnesium is found naturally in greens, whole grains, beans and nuts, but is lost in the processing of grains to flour.

Magnesium levels are rapidly depleted with stress, use of diuretics and certain medications.

Uses for Magnesium:

Cardiovascular System: Supports and promotes healthy electrical activity in the heart, related to healthy heartbeat. Aids suboptimal heart function and mitral valve prolapse.

Brain Health: Promotes healthy arterial flow to the brain, and may even have accompanying neuroprotective effects.

Blood Pressure: 600 to 1,000 mg/d of magnesium promotes healthy normal blood pressure.

Promotes Healthy Cholesterol Levels:

Postmenopausal Osteoporosis:

GI system/Chronic Constipation: Helpful as a laxative for constipation, and as an antacid to reduce symptoms of gastric hyperacidity.

Blood Sugar: Higher dietary magnesium intake is associated with healthy insulin levels and a reduced risk of developing high blood glucose levels. An increase of 100 mg/d in dietary magnesium is associated with a 15% risk reduction for developing high blood glucose.

Leg Cramps and Restless Leg Syndrome:

Pregnancy-related Leg Cramps:

Premenstrual Symptoms, including mood changes and fluid retention in some women.

Chronic Headaches/Premenstrual Migraine:

Respitory health:

Nerve Pain: 500 to 1,000 mg, magnesium helps relieve certain types of nerve pain for up to four hours.

Hearing: Prevents hearing loss in individuals exposed to loud noises.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome:

Stress: Magnesium helps calm nerves and is often used before bed to help one relax for sleep.

Supplemental adult dosages range from 400 mg to 1,000 mg daily.