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    Like other minerals, magnesium is vital for the body to function. In fact, every organ in the body needs magnesium. While magnesium is found naturally in many foods and added to others, there’s a good chance you may not be getting enough. Here's why you should change that and how to do just that. Read >>
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Health and Fitness News

The Magic of Magnesium

Why you need this valuable mineral and how to get it.

Calcium, potassium, iron, and magnesium. You know you need these minerals for good health, but do you have any idea what they do? Like other minerals, magnesium is vital for the body to function. In fact, every organ in the body needs magnesium, but it’s mainly used in the heart, kidneys, bones, nerves, and muscles. And it’s an important part of energy production and numerous biochemical reactions.

While magnesium is found naturally in many foods and added to others, there’s a good chance you may not be getting enough. Since studies show magnesium may be beneficial in enhancing treatment for a number of medical and mental health conditions, upping your intake is essential for optimal health.

Read on to learn more about this mineral, why you need it, and how to get it.

Type 2 Diabetes

Magnesium levels are often low in people with type 2 diabetes. Eating a diet rich in magnesium may help prevent the development of type 2 diabetes as it helps control blood sugar levels and increases insulin sensitivity.

Depression and Anxiety

The millions of people who deal with depression or anxiety may benefit from a magnesium supplement. Many mental health disorders are related to an imbalance of serotonin in the brain. A lack of magnesium may contribute to low levels of serotonin, so increasing the magnesium in your diet may lead to improved mental health.

Asthma

Low levels of magnesium may put you at risk for developing asthma. While asthma attacks have been treated through magnesium given intravenously or by inhalation, supplements of magnesium haven’t been shown to improve daily symptoms of asthma.

Heart Health

The heart uses magnesium to regulate heartbeat. A diet rich in magnesium may help to lower high blood pressure and reduce inflammation in the body. Patients with an irregular heartbeat, congestive heart failure, or a history of heart problems may do well to take a magnesium supplement to improve heart health. Talk with your doctor to see if magnesium should be part of your treatment plan.
Migraines

Ever deal with migraine headaches? You may want to start taking a magnesium supplement. People who suffer from migraines often have lower levels of magnesium in their systems. Taking a supplement may cut back on the amount of medication you need and reduce the length of your migraine.

Premenstrual Syndrome

The bloating, weight gain, insomnia, and tender breasts that many woman suffer in the days leading up to their period may be relieved with a magnesium supplement. Taking vitamin B6 along with magnesium may be more effective than magnesium alone.

Osteoporosis

The body uses magnesium to build strong bones and prevent bone loss. Bone loss can lead to osteoporosis, a disease characterized by weak and brittle bones. Without enough calcium, vitamin D, and magnesium, you’re at a greater risk for developing osteoporosis.

Best Sources

Many plant and animal foods contain magnesium. Leafy green vegetables, nuts, beans, peas, and whole grains are the best sources of the mineral. You can get another boost by eating one of many cereals that are fortified with magnesium. An ounce of dry roasted almonds contains 80 mg of magnesium, a half cup of boiled spinach 78 mg, and a half cup of cooked black beans 60 mg.

While getting nutrition from whole foods is ideal, sometimes you may need a supplement. Whether your magnesium comes from foods or supplements, adult women should get 310 to 320 mg of magnesium each day and men should get 400 to 220 mg per day.