Why YOU need more Magnesium

The average American diet includes two thirds of the magnesium required by the body. So, you need to supplement even if you eat better than the average American! A healthy adult is recommended to have 300-400 mg/day. More for those who are active / sweat.

To top that off, any kind of sugar that you consume, depletes much of the magnesium that you have in your body. So this electrolyte can make or break an athlete who uses simple carbohydrates to fuel since they can deplete the magnesium in our bodies. A poor diet of processed foods, soda, sugar, prescription drugs, alcohol, digestive disorders, stress and aging will all cause magnesium deficiencies!

For athletes of any kind, this is critical. Not only will you not be able to absorb water into your cells, you will be missing a key electrolyte that conducts the nerve impulse to keep your muscles from cramping and moving smoothly. Yikes!

Magnesium plays a role in the active transport of calcium and potassium ions across cell membranes
, a process that is important to nerve impulse conduction, muscle contraction, and normal heart rhythm.

The deal is, magnesium and calcium need each other and when one of them is off, we have a hard time regulating balance in our cells. Calcium makes our muscles contract by exciting the nerves. Magnesium calms your muscles down and tells them when to relax. (Think sleep time) While magnesium keeps our blood flowing strong, calcium is needed for blood clotting. Their importance, to each other, on a cellular level is critical.

So, if you are someone who is having a tough time falling asleep, it might be because your electrolyte balance is off and you aren’t able to “relax” your muscles when your body asks you too. On the other hand, you could be an athlete you trains hard and mid-workout you get a cramp you can’t get rid of, so have to stop on the spot. Your body needs to keep your blood flowing smoothly and muscles in a more relaxed state, the more you are using them!

I used to hear of athletes, running marathons, who would carry tiny packages of mustard with them. If they got a cramp they would squirt it into their mouths, as a remedy for cramps. I never needed it, but it should work! Quality mustard seed has great minerals in it, such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorous and potassium. It is also a good source of folate and vitamin A. [Side note, mustard greens are an amazing source of potassium, calcium and phosphorous, essential minerals!] Not bad.

Good Sources of MAGNESIUM in Food
Almonds, Walnuts, Cashews, Brazil Nuts, Roasted Pumpkin Seeds, Sesame Seeds, Flax Seeds,
Halibut, Spinach Boiled / Raw, Peas, Broccoli, Raw Cocoa

Supplement Sources
Can’t get enough in your daily diet? Add one of my favorite and simple products, ‘Natural Calm.’ You can use it in a glass of warm or cold water or add it to a protein shake. Easy and doesn’t have ANY taste. One to two tsp a day and you are set!

However you measure it, you need more Magnesium to “balance” out the nerve transmitters that are working over time to keep us moving, when they don’t have much to slow us down!

Have questions or comments about this post or want more information on coaching with Mary? Send her a message!

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1. Rude RK. Magnesium. In: Ross AC, Caballero B, Cousins RJ, Tucker KL, Ziegler TR, eds. Modern Nutrition in Health and Disease. 11th ed. Baltimore, Mass: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2012:159-75.
2. Institute of Medicine. Dietary Reference Intakes for Calcium, Phosphorous, Magnesium, Vitamin D, and Fluoride. Washington, DC: National Academy Press; 1997. [↵]

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