While magnesium is the second most abundant mineral in the cells of the human body, it also represents the second most common deficiency. With only about 1 percent of magnesium stored in the blood, a deficiency in this essential nutrient can be difficult to detect through the usual lab tests.
Magnesium is involved in over 300 biochemical processes throughout the body, but one of its most important tasks is producing energy. In that capacity, it becomes indispensible in all cellular processes. Understanding the danger signs of a magnesium deficiency can rid you of bothersome, mysterious symptoms while lowering your risk of serious health issues.
Magnesium deficiency contributes to chronic disease symptoms
Scientifically speaking, the role of magnesium in the human body is far reaching – to say the least. It is critical to maintaining proper nerve and muscle function, while also keeping heart rhythm regular, supporting optimal immune system function and ensuring strong bones.
Because its impact is so widespread, magnesium can be effective at reducing the risk of many health problems such as, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, autism, fibromyalgia, chronic pain, osteoporosis and headaches. Publishing in Magnesium Research, scientists Starobrat-Hermelin and Kozielec (2004) in Poland have shown that children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) showed marked improvement in hyperactivity with supplemental magnesium.
Did you know the heart has the highest amount of magnesium of anywhere in the body. Without sufficient amounts of magnesium, your heart simply will not function properly.
Educate yourself: Nutrient deficiencies are easily avoidable
There is a mountain of evidence that correcting a magnesium deficiency can improve symptoms of chronic disease like those named above. The chief issue, however, is recognizing a nutrient deficiency.
World-renown neurosurgeon and pain management pioneer Dr. Norman Shealy feels so strongly about the significance of magnesium that he is widely quoted as saying, “Every known illness is associated with a magnesium deficiency,” and that, “magnesium is the most critical mineral required for electrical stability of every cell in the body. A magnesium deficiency may be responsible for more diseases than any other nutrient.”
So, because magnesium deficiency is often overlooked, millions of people tend to suffer needlessly through ineffective conventional therapies that fail to address the problem at hand – a lack of nutrients.
Understanding the signs of a magnesium deficiency
Greater use of processed foods, fluoride and many pharmaceuticals has increased the likelihood of magnesium deficiency so that it is rare not to have some level of deficiency. Unfortunately, early symptoms of magnesium deficiency can be easily overlooked.
Because most magnesium is stored in the body’s tissues, first symptoms most often include leg cramps, foot pain or muscle “twitches,” common problems when skeletal muscle is affected. While somewhat less common, other early symptoms include loss of appetite, fatigue, weakness, nausea and vomiting. As magnesium deficiency becomes more severe, symptoms often evolve into numbness, seizures, tingling, personality changes, and even abnormal heart rhythms and coronary spasms.
Nutritional deficiencies can trigger emotional instability
When the central nervous system is affected, there can be anxiety, nervousness and even premenstrual irritability, all symptoms often wrongly linked to other causes. If the cardiovascular system is being affected by magnesium deficiency, you can expect palpitations, heart arrhythmias and angina.
As the deficiency becomes more severe, additional symptoms are likely to develop, including extreme thirst and hunger, frequent urination and blurry vision, among others. You may recognize these as sounding much like the symptoms of diabetes. That’s because magnesium deficiency and diabetes are very closely related.
Are you getting enough magnesium?
The good news is that your body responds very quickly to magnesium supplementation. In preparing supplements, magnesium is combined with other molecules to stabilize the compound, so expect to find a variety of supplement options.
Each combination is referred to as a chelate and has different absorption, bioavailability and therapeutic value. Magnesium oxide, while one of the most common and least expensive supplement forms, is also one in which magnesium is poorly absorbed by your body, compared to other supplements, such as magnesium citrate.
If you have been taking calcium supplements, proper magnesium supplementation is critical to avoid risk of heart attack. A 1-to-1 ratio of calcium to magnesium is recommended. Too much calcium in proportion to magnesium can lead to muscle spasms, putting you at greater risk of heart attack and sudden death.
Finally, if you’re dealing with any health problem, don’t ignore the signs and be sure to work with a trusted (well-educated) medical professional.