Are you Magnesium deficient? 

Less than 10 percent of Americans meet the recommended dietary allowance for magnesium and researchers believe that over 60% of Americans are actually magnesium deficient. Most with magnesium deficiency may not even know it because they have no deficiency symptoms, have only minor ones or do not relate the symptoms they are experiencing with magnesium deficiency.  Despite this, some health experts believe that magnesium deficiency is one of the largest and most under-addressed health problems that exists today. 

Magnesium deficiency is particularly important because, according to the National Institutes of Health magnesium is a cofactor in more than 300 enzyme systems that regulate diverse biochemical reactions in the body.  Below is a short list of some important roles that are critical to bodily functions in which magnesium plays a significant role:  

  • Protein synthesis
  • Muscle and nerve function
  • Blood glucose control
  • Blood pressure regulation
  • Energy production
  • Oxidative phosphorylation
  • Glycolysis
  • Structural bone development
  • Synthesis of DNA, RNA, and the antioxidant glutathione
  • Active transport of Calcium and Potassium ions across cell membranes – important to nerve impulse conduction, muscle contraction, and normal heart rhythm

Assessing Magnesium Deficiency 

The symptoms of low magnesium and magnesium deficiency vary from person to person and can range from weakened immune system, general anxiety, muscle cramping, restless leg syndrome and irregular heartbeat.  Magnesium deficiency is also more prevalent in people with certain health conditions associated with chronic alcoholism, caffeine intake, strenuous exercise or the use of certain medications.

Much to my frustration a couple of years ago, I was having an irregular heartbeat and spent several hours and resources to investigate my predicament.  Unfortunately, the findings were inconclusive.  After doing quite a bit of research, I began to supplement with magnesium.  And, to my amazement, the symptoms I was having all but disappeared.

According to the National Institutes of Health, an adult body contains approximately 25 g magnesium, with fifty percent to sixty percent present in the bones, most of the rest in soft tissues and less than one percent of total magnesium in blood serum. 

Assessing magnesium status is difficult because most magnesium is inside cells or in bone. The most commonly used and readily available method for assessing magnesium status is measurement of serum magnesium concentration even though serum levels have little correlation with total body magnesium levels or concentrations in specific tissues.  There are other methods, but according to the National Institutes of Health, no single method is considered satisfactory.  

Ultimately, it is up to each of us to assess our bodies for symptoms of magnesium deficiency and concentrate on incorporating magnesium sources and wellness routines into your daily routine.

What Are the Right Magnesium Requirements?  

The table below, from the United States National Institutes of Health, shows the recommended daily allowance (RDA) or adequate intake (AI) of magnesium for adults, infants, and children.

Table 1: Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDAs) for Magnesium*

Age

Male

Female

Pregnancy

Lactation

Birth to 6 months

30 mg*

30 mg*

7–12 months

75 mg*

75 mg*

1–3 years

80 mg

80 mg

4–8 years

130 mg

130 mg

9–13 years

240 mg

240 mg

14–18 years

410 mg

360 mg

400 mg

360 mg

19–30 years

400 mg

310 mg

350 mg

310 mg

31–50 years

420 mg

320 mg

360 mg

320 mg

51+ years

420 mg

320 mg

 

 

Magnesium Sources.

Magnesium sources vary and can come in the form of foods we eat, supplements and topical and transdermal applications.  There are various natural sources of magnesium in food, although it is good to pay attention to consume foods high in magnesium, the amounts are still relatively low for the needs of the average adult.  Some foods highest in magnesium include:

  • Pumpkin seed - kernels: Serving Size 1 oz, 168 mg
  • Almonds, dry roasted: Serving Size 1 oz, 80 mg
  • Spinach, boiled: Serving Size ½ cup, 78 mg
  • Cashews, dry roasted: Serving Size 1 oz, 74 mg
  • Pumpkin seeds in shell: Serving Size 1 oz, 74 mg
  • Peanuts, oil roasted: Serving Size ¼ cup, 63 mg
  • Cereal, shredded wheat: Serving Size 2 large biscuits, 61 mg
  • Soymilk, plain or vanilla: Serving Size 1 cup, 61 mg
  • Black beans, cooked: Serving Size ½ cup, 60 mg

Those who think that magnesium in meat would be the highest may be surprised that this is not necessarily the case, a 3 ounce serving of Salmon has approximately 26 mg, which is more magnesium that beef which has approximately 20 mg for the same serving size, magnesium in chicken falls right in between at approximately 22 mg for the same serving size. 

Magnesium Supplements. 

Magnesium supplements can be very useful and it should be noted that there are multiple types of magnesium available.  Many people complain of digestive issues with magnesium supplements but issues may depend on the type of magnesium that you are consuming. 

Topical or Transdermal Magnesium.

Several research studies have concluded that transdermal magnesium or topical magnesium application is an excellent source of magnesium to fend of magnesium deficiency and contribute nicely to a diet with foods high in magnesium since transdermal magnesium therapy is a form of magnesium supplementation that is easy, convenient, and affordable.

Transdermal magnesium is also an excellent choice for the many people who suffer from low tolerance to oral magnesium, evidenced by intestinal complaints and even when a person consumes foods high in magnesium it would not typically be enough with the western diet to fend off magnesium deficiency. 

Conclusion.

Many people are deficient in magnesium without exhibiting symptoms of magnesium deficiency.  Due to the difficulty in identifying magnesium deficiency and the high prevalence of people with magnesium deficiency the preferable route is to pay attention to foods high in magnesium and consume them and supplement with magnesium.  Supplementing with transdermal magnesium is easy with magnesium oils contained hemp body sprays like Soothe and Boost from Madrigal Creatives.  Boost and Soothe are powerful mineral supplements in a hemp body spray that contains over 2000 mg of magnesium, CBD and organic essential oils in two profiles, one to boost you up and one to relax and restore.  One can only receive benefits of greater health by adding magnesium to your wellness routine and experience the benefits of Living More.