According to a recent study, an estimated 20% of people in developed countries do not meet their recommended daily intake of magnesium. (1) Fatigue and decreased appetite are two of the most common signs that you’re lacking in magnesium, but what other symptoms should we look out for? Here’s everything you need to know about this essential mineral.
What Is Magnesium?
Magnesium is an important nutrient which is involved in over 300 chemical reactions in the body. These reactions impact several aspects of our everyday health, including:
- Blood pressure regulation
- Muscle function
- Immune system function
- Energy Production
- Brain function
- Maintaining healthy bones and teeth
- Protein synthesis
- Blood sugar levels
5 Signs Your Lacking In Magnesium
When our magnesium levels are low, bodily functions including muscle development and protein synthesis are carried out inefficiently, affecting how awake we feel. Magnesium also plays a significant role in normal energy-yielding metabolism by activating ATP, known as the energy molecule. This process helps us release energy from the food we eat, meaning without it we feel tired and fatigued.
2. Muscle Twitches
Without enough magnesium our muscles can contract involuntarily, causing painful muscle cramps and twitches. This is because magnesium plays an essential role in activating both nerves and muscles within the nervous system.
The American Migraine Foundation recommend taking a magnesium supplement daily to prevent migraines. (2) Whilst research is ongoing to confirm the relation between this nutrient and headaches, studies show that magnesium levels in the brain are often low during migraine episodes. 3
Magnesium impacts our brain function and is thought to play a large part in our mood. Recent studies showed that magnesium affects the hypothalamus- a part of the brain which helps to regulate the glands associated with stress response. As a result, increased magnesium has been linked to improvements in anxiety and other aspects of neurological health. 4
Magnesium can affect sleep quality by sending nerve signals to the brain which help our muscles to relax. Additionally, research shows that magnesium can improve symptoms of insomnia, including struggling to fall asleep and problems waking up in the morning. 5