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12 health benefits of magnesium

From regulating blood sugar levels to boosting athletic performance, magnesium is essential for your brain and body. Although it’s found in a variety of foods, from leafy green vegetables to nuts, seeds, and beans, many people don’t get enough of it.

Here are 12 proven magnesium health benefits, along with easy ways to increase your intake.

1. Involved in hundreds of biochemical reactions in your body.

Magnesium is present throughout the body. In fact, every cell in your body contains this mineral and needs it to function. About 60% of the magnesium in your body is found in the bones, while the rest is found in muscles, soft tissues, and fluids, including blood. One of its main roles is to act as a cofactor, a helper molecule, in the biochemical reactions that are continuously carried out by enzymes. It is involved in over 600 reactions in your body including:

– Energy Production: Conversion of food into energy
– Protein formation: formation of new proteins from amino acids
– Gene maintenance: helps in the creation and repair of DNA and RNA.
– Muscle movements: helps to contract and relax muscles.
– Regulation of the nervous system: regulation of neurotransmitters that send messages in the brain and nervous system

2. Can improve exercise performance

Depending on the activity, you need more magnesium during training than when you are resting. Magnesium helps move blood sugar to muscles and remove lactate, which can build up during exercise and cause fatigue. Studies show that magnesium supplements may be particularly beneficial for improving exercise performance in older adults and those who are deficient in this nutrient. A study of 2,570 women linked higher magnesium intake to increased muscle mass and strength.

3. Can fight depression

Magnesium plays an important role in brain function and mood, and low levels are associated with an increased risk of depression. In fact, an analysis of data from more than 8,800 people found that people under 65 with the lowest magnesium intake had a 22% greater risk of depression. In addition, magnesium supplementation can help reduce symptoms of depression. In a small 8-week study, taking 500 mg of magnesium daily resulted in a significant improvement in depression symptoms in people who were deficient in this mineral. In addition, a 6-week study of 126 people showed that taking 248 mg of magnesium daily reduced symptoms of depression and anxiety, regardless of magnesium status.

4. May Support Healthy Blood Sugar Levels

Studies suggest that around 48% of people with type 2 diabetes have low levels of magnesium in their blood, which can affect the body’s ability to effectively regulate blood sugar. Additionally, research shows that people who consume more magnesium have a lower risk of type 2 diabetes. According to one review, magnesium supplements help improve insulin sensitivity, a key factor in controlling blood sugar. Another review reports that magnesium supplements improve blood sugar and insulin sensitivity in people at risk for type 2 diabetes. However, these effects may depend on how much magnesium you get in your diet. For example, an older study found that supplements didn’t improve blood sugar or insulin levels in people who weren’t deficient.

5. May Support Heart Health

Magnesium plays an important role in maintaining a healthy and strong heart. In fact, studies show that magnesium supplements can help lower high blood pressure, which can be a risk factor for heart disease. Another study linked high magnesium intake to a lower risk of heart disease, stroke, and high blood pressure. Additionally, one study found that magnesium supplements improved several risk factors for heart disease, including triglycerides, LDL (bad cholesterol), HDL (good cholesterol), and systolic blood pressure levels, particularly in magnesium-deficient men

6. Anti-Inflammatory Benefits

Low magnesium intake is associated with increased levels of inflammation, which play a key role in aging and chronic disease. An analysis of 11 studies concluded that magnesium supplements lowered levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), a marker of inflammation, in people with chronic inflammation. Other studies report similar results, showing that magnesium supplements can reduce CRP and other inflammatory markers like interleukin-6. Additionally, some research links magnesium deficiency to increased oxidative stress, which is associated with inflammation.

7. May Prevent Migraine Attacks

Migraines can be painful and often cause symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light and noise. Some researchers believe that migraine sufferers are more likely than others to be magnesium deficient. In fact, several studies suggest that magnesium supplements can even prevent and treat migraines. In one study, a 1-gram magnesium supplement relieved acute migraine attacks faster and more effectively than a traditional medication. Additionally, eating more magnesium-rich foods may help reduce migraine symptoms.

8. May Improve PMS Symptoms

Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) is one of the most common diseases in women of childbearing age. It often causes symptoms such as water retention, abdominal cramps, fatigue and irritability. Some research suggests that magnesium supplements help relieve the symptoms of PMS, as well as other conditions like menstrual cramps and migraines. This may be because magnesium levels fluctuate throughout the menstrual cycle, which can worsen PMS symptoms in people who are deficient. Therefore, dietary supplements can help reduce the severity of symptoms, including menstrual migraine attacks. In fact, an older study found that taking 250 mg of magnesium daily in 126 women with PMS helped reduce bloating, depression and anxiety compared to a control group.

9. May Promote Bone Health

Magnesium is essential for maintaining bone health and protecting against bone loss. In fact, 50-60% of your body’s magnesium is in your bones. Some studies link lower levels of this mineral to a higher risk of osteoporosis, a disease that makes bones brittle and weak. A three-year study of 358 people on hemodialysis, a treatment used to remove waste and water from the blood, showed that those who ate the least magnesium suffered three times more fractures than those who ate the most. Additionally, a recent review of 12 studies linked high magnesium intake to increased bone mineral density in the hip and femoral neck, two areas prone to fractures.

10. May Promote Better Sleep

Magnesium supplements are often used as a natural remedy for sleep problems like insomnia. This is because magnesium regulates several neurotransmitters involved in sleep, such as gamma-aminobutyric acid. A study of older adults with insomnia found that magnesium supplements reduced the time it took to fall asleep by an average of 17 minutes. Another study involving nearly 4,000 adults linked increased intake of this mineral to improved sleep quality and duration.

11. May Help Reduce Anxiety Symptoms

Some research suggests that magnesium helps treat and prevent anxiety. For example, a study of 3,172 adults linked increased magnesium intake to a lower risk of depression and anxiety. Similarly, a small 6-week study found that taking 248 mg of magnesium daily significantly reduced anxiety symptoms. Other research suggests that a magnesium deficiency may increase your body’s sensitivity to stress, which can increase symptoms of anxiety. A review concluded that magnesium supplements may help reduce mild to moderate anxiety, but found that research is conflicting and the effects of supplements have not been studied beyond 3 months.

12. Safe and widely used

Magnesium is essential for many aspects of health. The recommended daily dose is 400-420 mg per day for men and 310-320 mg per day for women.
You can get this mineral from foods and supplements.

in summary

Magnesium is essential for maintaining good health and plays a key role in everything from exercise performance to heart health and brain function. Eating a variety of magnesium-rich foods can ensure you’re getting enough of this important nutrient in your diet. Spinach, chia seeds, peanut butter, and avocados are some examples of foods that can be added to smoothies, snacks, and other dishes. You can also try taking a dietary supplement or multivitamin to fill in the gaps in your diet. However, the results of the studies should be interpreted with caution. Eating a balanced diet is more important than focusing on just one nutrient.

* Presse Santé strives to convey health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In NO CASE can the information given replace the advice of a doctor.

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