Magnesium's benefits include:
- Magnesium may play a role in preventing osteoporosis
Recent research conducted on 2000 men and women suggests that the people with higher intakes of magnesium had significantly higher bone density than those who got the least amount of magnesium. This research and other studies show that people with higher bone density have a much lower risk of developing osteoporosis.
- Magnesium is involved in energy metabolism
Magnesium plays a very important role in stabilising the enzymes that help to produce cellular energy, which means that magnesium is significantly involved in the regulation and metabolism of energy.
- Magnesium is needed for healthy muscles and nerves
One of magnesium's most well known roles is in maintaining healthy smooth and skeletal muscle tissue by helping to regulate the body's nerve and muscle tone. Magnesium acts as a chemical gate blocker in nerves in the muscles to help keep the muscles relaxed. If the gate blocking by magnesium fails, the nerve cell can become overactivated and contract inappropriately.
- Magnesium is necessary for a healthy heart
Magnesium's role in maintaining healthy and relaxed muscle and nerve tone is the reason why it is important in heart health. Magnesium ensures that the heart muscle (which is full of nervous tissue that conduct electrically) is relaxed, beats properly and regularly and does not misfire beats inappropriately (irregular heart beats). Many studies suggest that magnesium supplements help to lower high blood pressure, especially in people with low blood magnesium levels and this could be due to magnesium's relaxing effect on the blood vessels - it helps to dilate them, thus ensuring that there is more room for blood to flow and decreasing blood pressure levels back to normal. Other research shows that people who have angina (a condition caused by a spasm in the coronary arteries, one of the blood vessels leading to the heart) benefit from magnesium supplementation, by helping to decrease symptoms. Research also shows that magnesium helps to protect against heart attacks caused by blood clots. Magnesium helps to keep the blood clots from forming by making platelets (tiny blood vessels that form clots) less “sticky” and this makes them less likely to lump together into an artery-clogging clot.
Research shows that magnesium helps to alleviate certain symptoms of pre-menstrual syndrome (PMS), especially breast tenderness and swelling, headaches and irritability
- Magnesium helps to relieve asthma
Magnesium's role in maintaining healthy and relaxed muscle and nerve tone is the reason why it is important in helping to alleviate asthma, a condition in which the muscles lining the airways become tight and narrow making it very difficult to breath. Magnesium helps the muscles relax, so the airways open up and breathing is easier. Many studies have shown that magnesium is a very useful medication (especially when used intravenously in the emergency room) for relieving the symptoms associated with moderate to acute and severe asthma. In emergency rooms in the USA, high-dose intravenous magnesium is used to treat moderate to severe and acute asthma in adults and children. People with asthma may may have low blood levels of magnesium, so getting more through supplements and magnesium-rich foods could help prevent attacks and make those attacks less severe.
- Magnesium is required for good mental health
Research has suggested that magnesium in implicated in a number of psychiatric disorders and in particular, low levels of magnesium are associated with these psychiatric disorders. In one study, boys who had depression, schizophrenia or sleep problems had lower blood magnesium levels than those boys without these disorders.
- Magnesium may be good for children with autism
Research suggests that children with autism may be generally low in magnesium and supplementation (along with vitamin B6) may significantly improve symptoms.
- Magnesium may help to prevent kidney stones
Studies shows that magnesium supplements seem to keep calcium kidney stones (kidney stones which are created by calcium accumulation in the kidneys) from coming back. The reason for this is due to magnesium's balancing effect on calcium and preventing calcium over-accumulation in the body.
- Magnesium may be useful for preventing migraine headaches
People who suffer migraine headaches often have low blood levels of magnesium. In one study, research has shown that intravenous magnesium stops migraine headaches (with or without aura) in about 80% of the participants. Other studies have confirmed that intravenous magnesium is a highly effective medication in the acute control of migraine pain and associated symptoms. For this reason, high-dose intravenous magnesium is used in emergency rooms in the USA to alleviate the pain and associated symptoms of acute migraines.
- Magnesium may be useful for PMS
Research shows that magnesium helps to alleviate certain symptoms of pre-menstrual syndrome (PMS), especially breast tenderness and swelling, headaches and irritability. Magnesium has a relaxing effect on the muscles, which has a beneficial effect on the body as a whole and also has a beneficial effect on mood. One of the symptoms of magnesium deficiency is irritability. Magnesium also prevents fluid build-up in the cells, therefore alleviating breast swelling and tenderness. In addition, magnesium has a proven headache prevention mechanism. In fact some studies show that women who have PMS may be deficient in magnesium (and also vitamin B6).