Get the latest from Russell not just health news but health, nutrition and sports performance and supplement information from one of Australia's best known Naturopaths and Emergency Medical Technicians, have your say ask Russell.
Need a Medic or First Aid ? see www.firstaideventmedics.com.
Sunday, 30 November 2014
Hypomagnesemia (low magnesium levels) is probably the most underdiagnosed electrolyte deficiency
Magnesium the Forgotten Mineral
Hypomagnesemia (low magnesium levels) is probably the most
underdiagnosed electrolyte deficiency. Magnesium
is involved in DNA and RNA synthesis and magnesium is a cofactor for more than 300 enzyme
systems and is involved in both aerobic and anaerobic energy generation.
Like calcium, much (60 per cent) of our magnesium is
in our bones. Calcium and magnesium work together; magnesium helps regulate the
amount of calcium that enters cells and a sufficiency of magnesium is also needed
to help prevent osteoporosis. Symptoms of a magnesium deficiency may induce
muscle spasms and cramps, particularly at night in bed, as well as heartbeat
abnormalities, poor concentration and attention span, hyper-irritability,
excitability, vertigo and twitching of a cheek and eye muscles. Also studies
have found magnesium may lower the risk of metabolic syndrome, improve glucose
and insulin metabolism, relieve symptoms of dysmenorrhea, and alleviating leg
cramps in women who are pregnant
These night leg cramps can be very painful and affect
quality of life by interrupting normal sleeping patterns around 70% of adults
and 7% of children have reported experiencing leg cramps. Because of
magnesium’s role in neuromuscular signals and muscle contraction, researchers
have observed that magnesium deficiency is often to blame.
Restless leg syndrome can be another warning that the
dietary intake of magnesium is inadequate. Increasing foods high in magnesium
or supplementing may help reduce the incidence of leg cramps and restless leg
syndrome you will want to increase your intake of both magnesium and potassium.
As magnesium is part of the chlorophyll molecule, green leafy vegetables,
such as spinach, legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grains, are good sources of
magnesium. The Australian adult recommended dietary intake
(RDI) is around 420 mg a day for men and 320 mg a day for women. However, those
who exercise regularly need more, since magnesium is lost in sweat.
Studies have found that low magnesium may be a
contributing factor in some breathing disorders, since magnesium relaxes smooth
muscle in the lung, lowers lung hypersensitivity, and may help reduce the
incidence of wheezing. Furthermore, lung function may improve by including more
foods in the diet that are high in magnesium..
Other studies found that increased dietary magnesium
may help lower blood pressure in people with mild to moderate hypertension, A 2012
study with 241,378 participants published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition
uncovered that a diet high in magnesium foods could reduce the risk of a stroke
by 8%. Also magnesium may also help reduce the incidence and severity of
migraine headaches. Studies have found
that 600mg of magnesium daily may reduce the frequency of migraine headaches by
up to 42% and since magnesium is a natural relaxant it may help induce a
restful night’s sleep.
It has been known for some time that people living in
areas where the drinking water is hard, that is, high in calcium and magnesium,
have lower rates of heart disease. The cardiac protection by hard water is
thought to be attributed to the enhanced magnesium intake.
Magnesium deficiency may also lead to a low potassium
status. Most potassium in our bodies is intracellular (inside our cells). The
concentration of potassium in blood plasma must be controlled within very
narrow limits, since the correct concentration is vital to the function of the
heart, the nervous system, muscles, and many other bodily functions. Potassium
deficiency may cause tiredness, muscle fatigue, apathy, depression, and
hypertension; in fact many of the symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome.
However, because excess potassium can be dangerous, you should not take
potassium supplements unless they are prescribed by a qualified healthcare
practitioner. Wholegrains, vegetables, and fruit are good dietary sources of
Magnesium depletion has
also been shown to cause insulin resistance and impaired insulin secretion and
magnesium supplements have been reported to improve glucose tolerance and
insulin response in the elderly.
The importance of magnesium is well documented but are we getting enough
of this important mineral from our diets? This question is answered in the
following studies. An analysis of data from the National Health and Nutrition
Examination Survey (NHANES) of 2005–2006 found that a majority of Americans of
all ages ingest less magnesium from food than their respective RDIs and Evaluation of micronutrient intakes of older Australians: The National
Nutrition Survey—1995 found on average, the magnesium
consumption levels of Australian men and women are also below the RDI. supplement - Blackmores Magnesium Powder follow directions