March Nutrient of the Month: Restorative & Sleep Powerhouse, Magnesium

March Nutrient of the Month: Restorative & Sleep Powerhouse, Magnesium

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By: Amanda Miller MS, RN

According to a study published by The Journal of Intensive Care Medicine , a deficiency in this specific mineral can DOUBLE your chance of dying (1).

As profound as this statement is, I am talking about Magnesium, a mineral up to half of Americans are typically deficient in and one that can often help or even cure a long list of symptoms and diseases.

As a critical care nurse in the hospital, we use magnesium for almost everything, including but not limited to stopping lethal heart arrhythmias, as a powerful reliever of bowelobstructing constipation, and aiding high risk preterm mothers coming in with high blood pressure and/or seizures.

So why is this powerful mineral sometimes overlooked and often only considered in life threatening situations?

Think of magnesium as the mineral for relaxation: it relaxes muscles, blood vessels, and our nervous system. Because of this magnesium is our most powerful antidote to relaxation restoration and sound sleep.

That’s why it comes as no surprise that a deficiency in this vital mineral is linked to the following:

● Muscle cramps or twitches

● Insomnia

● Irritability

● Sensitivity to loud noises

● Anxiety

● Irritability

● Autism

● ADHD

● Heart palpitations

● Constipation

● Headaches

● Migraines

● Fibromyalgia

● Chronic fatigue

● Diabetes

● Asthma

● Kidney Stones

● Obesity

● Osteoporosis

● Hypertension

● Menstrual Cramps

● PMS

● Irritable Bowel Syndrome

● Reflux

It is no wonder most Americans are deficient in Magnesium – levels can become deficient from excess alcohol, salt, coffee, sodas, profuse sweating, chronic or intense stress, diarrhea, heavy menstruation, diuretic medications, antibiotics, and some intestinal parasites. This is all further complicated by a deficiency in the soil our produce is grown in and by the fact that magnesium is poorly absorbed by the body.

Here’s how to fix a deficiency:

1. Eat foods rich in magnesium: kelp, spinach, swiss chard, mung beans, dark chocolate (70% or higher dark cacao), pumpkin seeds, cashews, almonds, black beans, avocado, salmon, kefir, figs, banana, broccoli, and brussels sprouts .

2. Supplement with the most absorbable forms: magnesium citrate, glycinate, taurate, or aspartate. Poorly absorbable forms are magnesium carbonate, sulfate, gluconate, and oxide.

     a. Try these! Sleep EZ or Magnesium Glycinate

3. Take a hot epsom salt bath (magnesium sulfate) to relax. ** Add a few drops of lavender essential oil to get extra bang for your deep sleep buck!

If you are experiencing any of the above stated signs of magnesium deficiency, work with your Integrative Practitioner to test your magnesium levels and find a supplement plan that works for you!

Amanda Miller MS, RN is a Master’s-Degree-Level, Board Certified, Registered Nurse at the Akasha Center. You can schedule an appointment with her by calling 310-451-8880 or emailing us at info@akashacenter.com.

References:

1. Tong, GM and RK Rude. 2005. Magnesium deficiency in critical illness. J Intensive Care

Med 20 (1):3-17. Review

2. S. Johnson. 2001. The multifaceted and widespread pathology of magnesium deficiency.

Med Hypotheses 56(2): 163-70

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