Magnesium: An Important Nutrient Most People Aren’t Getting

By Anagha Rao


What do avocados, dark chocolate, and cashews all have in common? They are all abundant in magnesium. Magnesium is one of the essential minerals in the human body, and it plays several vital roles in maintaining our overall well-being. Unlike some vitamins, our body doesn’t produce magnesium, so we must obtain it from our diet.


Magnesium has a variety of health benefits on your body, and consuming enough magnesium can decrease the risk of numerous diseases. It plays a role in over 600 of the body’s reactions, including energy creation, DNA formation, muscle movements, and nervous system regulation. This mineral can boost performance in sports by disposing of lactate and moving blood sugar into the muscles. Additionally, magnesium is strongly associated with the ability to fight depression, and low levels of magnesium can lead to depression. 48% of people with type 2 diabetes have low levels of magnesium in their blood, impairing the body’s ability to control blood sugar levels. A Harvard University study found that high daily magnesium intake reduced the risk of developing diabetes by 33 percent; still other studies found that the mineral helps ward off migraines. Stress, depression, and anxiety can be relieved by magnesium because of the mineral’s ability to relax the body and muscles. One boon is that magnesium is all-natural, safe, and effortless to find.


According to the World Health Organization, more than 75% of the American adult population fails to meet the Food and Drug Administration’s recommended magnesium intake. The Recommended Daily Intake for Magnesium is 310-420 mg for adults, but it can vary depending on age and gender. When our body doesn’t get enough magnesium, we develop a condition known as magnesium deficiency. Some early signs of magnesium deficiency may include but are not limited to the following: muscle twitches and cramps, loss of appetite, nausea, fatigue, and weakness. Some later signs of magnesium deficiency are numbness, tingling, muscle contractions, and cramps, seizures, and personality changes. Moreover, magnesium deficiency can be a significant risk factor for various health conditions, including high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease. One possible reason for this magnesium deficiency is the tendency of the average American diet to focus on heavily processed convenience foods instead of green leafy vegetables, nuts and seeds, and legumes even though they are among our best food sources for the mineral.

There are countless sources of this incredible mineral, magnesium, and many of these foods are extremely healthy and provide other essential nutrients. One example of a magnesium-rich food is dark chocolate. Dark chocolate is extremely rich in magnesium, as well as iron, copper, and other nutrients. Likewise, avocados and nuts are also excellent sources of magnesium. Just one medium avocado contains 58 mg magnesium, which is 15% of the Recommended Daily Intake (RDI). Types of nuts that are abundant in magnesium include almonds, cashews, and Brazil nuts; a one-ounce serving of cashews contains 82 mg or 20% of the RDI.


Few people know about the importance of magnesium in your diet or its role in maintaining your overall health. Since the most obvious symptoms aren’t detected until levels are dangerously low, magnesium deficiency can be underdiagnosed. If you think you have a magnesium deficiency, speak to your healthcare provider. Everyone should try their best to eat magnesium-rich foods daily to maintain optimal physical, mental, and social health.


Resources

https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Magnesium-HealthProfessional/

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/10-proven-magnesium-benefits

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/10-foods-high-in-magnesium#section3

https://health.clevelandclinic.org/feeling-fatigued-could-it-be-magnesium-deficiency-and-if-so-what-to-do-about-it/

Image Credit:

https://www.pickpik.com/hass-avocado-avocados-fruit-food-tree-green-144839



Educational Content

What are some magnesium-rich foods?

Dark chocolate is extremely rich in magnesium, as well as iron, copper, and other nutrients. Likewise, avocados and nuts are also excellent sources of magnesium. Just one medium avocado contains 58 mg magnesium, which is 15% of the Recommended Daily Intake (RDI). Types of nuts that are abundant in magnesium include almonds, cashews, and Brazil nuts; a one-ounce serving of cashews contains 82 mg or 20% of the RDI.

What are some signs of magnesium deficiency?

Some early signs of magnesium deficiency may include but are not limited to the following: muscle twitches and cramps, loss of appetite, nausea, fatigue, and weakness. Some later signs of magnesium deficiency are numbness, tingling, muscle contractions, and cramps, seizures, and personality changes.


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