Every single cell in your body needs magnesium to get its job done. In fact, magnesium is involved in over 300 biochemical reactions, including:

  • Muscle contraction and relaxation
  • Converting food into energy
  • Protein synthesis
  • Nervous system regulation
  • Repairing DNA and RNA

And that’s just to mention a few! Obviously, this 4th most abundant mineral in the body is closely linked to our overall health. And yet, according to studies, about 50% of people in the US may not be getting enough of it.

To get you up to speed on just how important magnesium is, we’re going to go over its benefits to your health and some symptoms of magnesium deficiency. We’ll also cover off magnesium-rich foods and let you know about some bioavailable gummy supplements.

But first, let’s start with an important question:

How Much Magnesium Do We Need?

The recommended daily allowance of magnesium for women is about 310 to 320 mg and about 400 to 420 mg for men. If you’re eating a healthy, balanced diet that includes nuts, seeds, leafy greens, beans, legumes and whole grains, you may be getting enough.

But as we all know, it’s not always easy to eat perfectly healthy food every single day. Overly processed and fast foods tend to creep in when we don’t take the time to really nourish ourselves. And while quick food fixes can be time savers, they tend to cheat us out of the healthy vitamins and minerals that our body needs.

To reinforce just how important getting enough magnesium is, let’s go over its benefits to our overall health.

Magnesium Can Improve Your Mood

Magnesium is closely linked to brain function, which, in turn, means it’s connected to your mood. Specifically, magnesium helps to balance the neurotransmitters glutamate (which is excitatory) and GABA (which is calming).

In other words, consuming magnesium could help to fight both anxiety and depression. In fact, in one study on depressed older adults, taking a dietary supplement with 450 grams of magnesium per day was as effective as an antidepressant drug.

Here’s an important disclaimer: while we’re not suggesting that anyone go off their medication, this is a very hopeful sign that good nutrition could be one of the key factors in improving our mental health.

Magnesium Can Improve Your Exercise Performance

As we mentioned, magnesium is vital when it comes to muscle relaxation and contraction. And yes, that’s important for everyone. But if you’re particularly active, you may want to pay even closer attention to your magnesium intake.

Why? Magnesium is an electrolyte that helps to move blood sugar into your muscles and remove lactate. And if you’re not getting enough, it could make you more vulnerable to fatigue and cramping.

Depending on the kind of exercise you’re doing, you may need as much as 10 to 20% more magnesium than when you’re resting. So if you want to boost your performance, magnesium could be a great team player.

Magnesium Could Improve Heart Health

All muscles need magnesium to contract and relax, and that includes your heart. It’s also interesting to note that magnesium deficiency is common among people with congestive heart failure and that patients who receive magnesium immediately after a heart attack have a lower risk of mortality.

Magnesium May Lower Your Blood Pressure

Some research also suggests that magnesium may also help to lower blood pressure. In one investigation, high blood pressure patients were treated with 450 mg of the mineral and experienced a significant drop in blood pressure.

However, magnesium was not found to lower blood pressure in people with normal levels. While more studies are needed, magnesium’s relationship to blood pressure and overall heart health looks very promising.

Man and woman enjoying a bike ride together

If you’re at all up on your health and wellness news, you know that inflammation has been linked to major health problems such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes. Which is why the antiinflammatory properties of magnesium are extremely important.

In fact, low levels of magnesium have been associated with inflammatory markers such as CPR. The good news is that studies have shown that increasing magnesium intake can lower the presence of these markers in older adults and overweight people. 

Magnesium Can Help With Insulin Resistance and Type 2 Diabetes

When the liver and muscles can’t properly absorb sugar from the bloodstream, it’s known as insulin resistance. And it happens to be the cause of type 2 diabetes.

Because magnesium is vital when it comes to absorbing sugar from the bloodstream, low levels can put you at risk for developing diabetes. In fact, studies show that about half of the people with type 2 diabetes have low levels of magnesium.

On the positive side, studies have found that increasing your magnesium can help. In one investigation, it was found that supplementing with magnesium decreased both insulin resistance and blood sugar levels even in people with normal blood sugar levels.

Magnesium Can Improve Your Bone Health

About 50 to 60% of the magnesium in your body is stored in the skeletal system. And while calcium and vitamin D are vital to bone health, it’s magnesium that helps to regulate their levels.

Studies have also shown that getting the proper amount of magnesium improves bone density, bone crystal formation and even lowers the risk of osteoporosis in post-menopausal women.

Magnesium May Prevent Migraines

If you suffer from migraines, you know just how debilitating they can be. Nausea, vomiting and extreme sensitivity to light are all typical symptoms. Scientists now believe that people who get migraines are actually more likely to have low levels of magnesium.

Fortunately, a few encouraging studies suggest that magnesium can not only help to prevent migraines but can also help to treat them. Interestingly, one study found that a gram of magnesium was more effective at relieving migraine symptoms than a common migraine medication.

Magnesium Can Help with PMS

Many women have suffered from PMS or premenstrual syndrome. And the irritability, cramping and fatigue associated with it are definitely not something to look forward to every month. If you want to reduce symptoms, supplementing with magnesium could help.