Magnesium is vital for the brain and body, but did you know this mineral is also involved in the health of your bones, maintaining healthy blood sugar levels, supporting sleep, and even exercise?
You already know vitamins and minerals are important for optimal health. Nailing down specific ones can benefit you. Let’s give Magnesium a little love and focus on how this micronutrient mineral is helping you feel and be your best.
Magnesium benefits are numerous. Magnesium is involved in at least 300 bodily processes including energy production.[i] It’s the 4th most abundant mineral in the human body, the majority of which is stored within bones and teeth, followed by soft tissue, and in blood.[ii] It’s also important to note that vitamin D supports magnesium absorption and vice versa and should be consumed together.
So what does magnesium do and what is it good for? Here are some of the benefits of magnesium.
6 Health Benefits of Magnesium
Maintain Bone Health
One of the main benefit of magnesium concerns your bone health. Bones and teeth house quite a bit of magnesium and as such plays a crucial role in bone health. As you age, bone strength can decline. There is a positive association between magnesium intake and bone density. That means you can delay or even prevent the onset of age-related bone decline simply by reaching your daily magnesium requirements.
Blood Sugar Control
Magnesium benefits don’t stop there and this mineral also plays a significant role in glucose metabolism. Specifically, magnesium is required for optimal use of insulin during carbohydrate metabolism. Without enough magnesium, insulin resistance can occur, and blood sugar control becomes unregulated.[iii] Healthy blood sugar levels are essential for maintaining a healthy body and lifestyle.
Important for Cardiovascular Health
Magnesium benefits already include blood sugar control and bone health but did you know this mineral also plays an important cardiovascular role?
The benefits of magnesium on heart health are twofold. First, magnesium plays a role in fluid balance between sodium and potassium. If there’s too much sodium in the cell and not enough potassium, blood pressure is affected and can lead to unwanted cardiac events. Magnesium protects against potassium loss and helps maintain sodium levels and fluid status, maintaining healthy blood pressure.
Second, adequate magnesium levels are essential for fighting off inflammation and preventing an overexaggerated response to oxidative stress and immune stress. A healthy inflammatory response is important for heart health and disease prevention.[iv]
We already know that magnesium is important for healthy blood pressure and heart rate, which is directly associated with exercise performance. Plus, magnesium plays a role in normal muscle function. Other studies have demonstrated that magnesium improves strength, speed, and jumping force. The practical application of magnesium to improve walking speed in elderly women is important to note.[v]
Better Brain Function and Memory
The relationship between brain health and food is becoming more apparent. Specifically, magnesium is important for cognitive function and memory. Not only that, but magnesium has also been shown to be associated with the ability to learn something new, even as you age. Keeping your brain sharp will help you feel youthful and better able to keep up with your family and friends.[vi]
Supports Sleep Health
Lack of sleep is the pits. Ensuring you’re getting enough is important for overall health, well-being, and stress management. Though setting up a healthy sleep environment is essential for making it happen, your diet plays a critical role in keeping you asleep. In fact, magnesium is associated with sleep quality. That means if you’re reaching your daily magnesium needs, you’re more likely to sleep longer at night, roll through the sleep stages more fluidly, and sleep more soundly – here’s to no more snoring or night waking![vii]
Ways to Get More Magnesium
The RDA for magnesium for adults is 310 mg for women and 400 mg for men.[viii] Ensuring you are getting enough magnesium through diet and supplementation is a safe and effective way to reach daily requirements.
A diet rich in leafy greens, legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grains provides ample magnesium. A good rule of thumb is that fiber-rich foods contain magnesium and to read food labels for foods containing dietary fiber.
Magnesium supplements are available in numerous forms and are readily absorbed by the body and can help fill in any gaps where dietary magnesium is missing. As you now know, magnesium supplement benefits are too numerous to pass up!
Magnesium is an essential mineral important for dozens of body processes. Ensuring you are getting enough magnesium through dietary sources and supplementation can help keep you feeling refreshed and energized. Not to mention a youthful mind, sharp wit, healthy heart, strong bones, and sleeping like a baby. If you are having trouble reaching daily magnesium needs through diet alone, a supplement can help you fill in the gaps.
[i] Al Alawi AM, Majoni SW, Falhammar H. Magnesium and Human Health: Perspectives and Research Directions. Int J Endocrinol. 2018 Apr 16;2018:9041694. doi:10.1155/2018/9041694
[ii] Schwalfenberg GK, Genuis SJ. The Importance of Magnesium in Clinical Healthcare. Scientifica (Cairo). 2017;2017:4179326. doi:10.1155/2017/4179326
[iii] Mooren FC. Magnesium and disturbances in carbohydrate metabolism. Diabetes Obes Metab. 2015 Sep;17(9):813-23. doi:10.1111/dom.12492
[iv] DiNicolantonio JJ, Liu J, O'Keefe JH. Magnesium for the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease. Open Heart. 2018 Jul 1;5(2):e000775. doi:10.1136/openhrt-2018-000775
[vi] National Library of Medicine: The role of magnesium therapy in learning and memory
[vii] Arab A, Rafie N, Amani R, Shirani F. The Role of Magnesium in Sleep Health: a Systematic Review of Available Literature. Biol Trace Elem Res. 2022 Feb 19. doi:10.1007/s12011-022-03162-1