Everything You Need to Know About Magnesium – Part 1
In the dental practice I see a set of very common symptoms. They are poor sleep, anxiety, stress, teeth grinding, headaches and TMJ pain. All of these seem to fit into a category of facial pain.
People who suffer from craniofacial pain know that it’s a difficult problem to solve. But there may be a nutrient deficiency underlying all of these.
People who grind their teeth have tense facial muscles, sleep poorly, and often report depression or anxiety. It’s a problem with tense muscles and unrestful sleep.
Magnesium is a nutrient I wish more people knew about. The health benefits of magnesium include supporting critical functions in every organ. Dental nutrition shows us how to eat for life-long, whole-body health.
This three part series is going to break down the importance of this nutrient and how it can lead to better health.
The health benefits of magnesium
We need magnesium to prevent inflammation, stave off illness, and support every system in the body. Yet, 57 percent of Americans don’t get enough magnesium in their diet.
- Nerve function
- Muscle function
- Heart function
- Protein synthesis
- Blood sugar balance
- Blood pressure regulation
- Energy production
- Bone development
- DNA and RNA synthesis
- Calcium and potassium transport
Magnesium is used by so many bodily functions that you’ll feel off if you aren’t getting enough.
Symptoms of magnesium deficiency
As you can imagine, the symptoms of magnesium deficiency are extensive due to its wide-reaching roles throughout the body.
Initially, you’d feel weak, ill, and could experience the following:
- Sugar cravings
- Difficulty concentrating
- Mood swings
If you go for a prolonged period with low magnesium levels, you can develop one of several related illnesses. Conditions that have been associated with prolonged magnesium deficiency include:
- Coronary heart disease
The prevalence of magnesium deficiency and its essential role in our health could mean it’s an underlying factor for many more diseases.
Nutrient deficiencies tend to work this way. The issues they cause over time compound within the body, leading to illness. Illness caused by nutrient deficiencies aren’t readily identified as the root cause(s) of other diseases by many doctors. Instead of recommending a patient improve nutrition and address nutrient deficiencies, they are often prescribed pharmaceutical medications that only address the symptoms.
Nutrient deficiencies, especially magnesium, are extremely common and I see them in my patients daily. This is why I recommend nutrient testing and encourage my patients to be sure there are getting the most critical vitamins and minerals – one of which, of course, is magnesium!
Top 5 Science-Backed Benefits of Magnesium
There are literally hundreds of benefits of having healthy magnesium levels, but here are five of the most important:
- Aids in weight loss – While no one pill should ever be considered the solution to weight loss, magnesium does offer weight loss support. Specifically, magnesium citrate helps you lose water weight and stool weight. Magnesium also helps your overall energy production and lowers your insulin resistance – both of which are beneficial components needed to achieve and maintain a healthy weight.
- Improves sleep – A common recommendation for insomnia, magnesium works by activating your parasympathetic nervous system, which calms you down. It also stimulates melatonin production.
- Improves mood – Magnesium is an important nutrient for healthy brain function, including balancing mood. Studies have found magnesium supplements to be very effective in helping depression. One study suggests the high prevalence of magnesium deficiency could be a major contributor to higher rates of mental health issues today.
- Fights inflammation – Everyone should be working on reducing inflammation in their body. It’s a challenge even the healthiest people face. Magnesium is well-studied and known for its anti-inflammatory effects on the body. In fact, magnesium is considered an anti-aging mineral because it reduces inflammation and oxidative stress – two markers of nearly every disease associated with aging.
- Resists Type 2 diabetes – Magnesium helps fight the development of Type 2 diabetes in a number of ways: reducing overall risk, lowering insulin resistance, and improving blood sugar. One study followed 4,497 Americans and found those with the highest magnesium intake had the lowest risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
In my practice, I’ve seen patients improve in each of these areas after they’ve addressed their low magnesium levels. They are often surprised by the effect this one mineral has on their overall health. We are going to spend Part 2 learning more about the first three benefits – improved weight loss, sleep, and mood.
Have you had nutrient testing done before? If so, share with us what your experiences were. Were you surprised by your results? How did you feel after you corrected some of your deficiencies? We love hearing what worked for you and what didn’t.
Please leave your questions in the comments below.
Dr Steven Lin’s book, The Dental Diet, is available to order today. An exploration of ancestral medicine, the human microbiome and epigenetics it’s a complete guide to the mouth-body connection. Take the journey and the 40-day delicious food program for life-changing oral and whole health.
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