Scientifically Proven Health Benefits of Foods and Drinks Rich in Magnesium.

Magnesium-rich foods and drinks have got so many health benefits. If your body is not taking enough of them, you will have magnesium deficiency characterized by muscle twitches and cramps, mental disorders, osteoporosis, fatigue and muscle weakness, high blood pressure, asthma, and irregular heartbeat.

There are so many magnesium-rich foods and drinks. They include fish (Chinook salmon, halibut, Atlantic mackerel, and Atlantic pollock); vegetables and fruits (spinach, swiss chard, edamame, tamarind, potato with skin, and okra); whole-grain products ( bran cereals, toasted wheat germ, and cooked quinoa); and legumes, nuts, and seeds ( cooked black-eyed peas, cooked tempeh, soy nuts, cooked beans, tofu, almonds, cashews, flaxseed, and peanut butter).

Magnesium is a chemical element found in soil, animals, fish, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds. It is atomic number 12 on the periodic table. Every human cell needs magnesium to function. Magnesium is involved in more than 600 biochemical reactions in the human body. Thus, it is a very crucial mineral to have insufficient quantities in the body.

Magnesium helps to convert food into energy. It is involved in the creation of new proteins from amino acids. In addition to this, it helps create and repair DNA and RNA. Magnesium is also needed for the contraction and relaxation of muscles that is why people with a magnesium deficiency have got fatigued, muscle weakness, and muscle twitches and cramps. Furthermore, magnesium is needed for the regulation of neurotransmitters which send messages to and from the brain and the nervous system.

Some people take manufactured magnesium supplements which they buy from the shops and others get enough of it from their diet. Although magnesium is well tolerated by healthy people, if taken in excess it may cause some side effects which include bloating, diarrhea, upset stomach, nausea, vomiting, low blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, mental confusion, changes in breathing, coma, and death.

Below is a table showing the recommended dietary allowance for magnesium.

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Table taken from USA National Institute of Health website.

The table below shows the sources of magnesium and the respective amounts they contain per serving.

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Table taken from USA National Institute of Health website.

Scientific evidence:

Magnesium relates to brain biochemistry and the sending and receiving of messages to and from the brain and the nervous system. Magnesium supplementation is believed to improve symptoms of depression.

Emily K Tarleton and Benjamin Littenberg, 2015, tested the existence of an association between dietary magnesium intake and depression in the US population. They found out that there was a huge relationship between exceptionally low magnesium intake and depression, particularly in more youthful grown-ups. They concluded that the finding of the expected defensive impact of low magnesium intake in more established grown-ups is astounding and warrants further investigation.

Marie-Laure Derom, 2013, and colleagues systematically reviewed the possible links between magnesium and depression in humans. They found out that a higher intake of dietary magnesium is by all accounts related to lower depression. However, switch causality cannot be avoided. The outcomes evaluating the relationship between blood and cerebrospinal fluid magnesium and depression are uncertain.

They concluded that magnesium is by all accounts successful in the treatment of depression. However, information is scant and disjointed. Aggravation in magnesium digestion may be identified with depression. Oral magnesium supplementation may forestall depression and may be utilized as an adjunctive treatment. In any case, more interventional and forthcoming investigations are required to additionally assess the advantages of magnesium intake and supplementation for depression.

Lazaro Barragan-Rodriguez and colleagues, 2008, evaluated the efficacy and safety of oral magnesium supplementation with magnesium chloride (MgCl2), in the treatment of newly diagnosed depression in the elderly with type 2 diabetes and hypomagnesemia. They concluded that taking everything into account, MgCl2 is as successful in the treatment of depressed elderly type 2 diabetics with hypomagnesemia as imipramine 50 mg day by day.

Magnesium benefits people with type 2 diabetes. These people have low magnesium concentration in their blood. In addition to this, people with low blood levels of magnesium have a higher risk of becoming diabetic. Magnesium improves blood sugar and hemoglobin A1c levels in people with type 2 diabetes.

In 2011, Jia-Yi Dong and colleagues examined the association between magnesium intake and risk of type 2 diabetes by conducting a meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies. They concluded that this meta-analysis gave additional proof supporting that magnesium intake is inversely associated with the risk of type 2 diabetes in a dose-response manner.

Adela Hruby and colleagues, 2014, assessed 7-year associations between magnesium intake and incident prediabetes and/or insulin resistance, and progression from these states to type 2 diabetes. They concluded that magnesium intake might be especially valuable in offsetting the risk of developing diabetes among those at high risk. Magnesium’s drawn-out relationship with non-consistent state (dynamic) measures merit further examination.

Dae Jun Kim and colleagues, 2010, investigated the long-term associations of magnesium intake with the incidence of diabetes, systemic inflammation, and insulin resistance among young American adults. They found out that magnesium intake was inversely associated with high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, interleukin-6, fibrinogen, and homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance. They concluded that magnesium intake was inversely associated with the incidence of diabetes in young American adults. This opposite affiliation might be clarified, at any rate to a limited extent, by the inverse relationships of magnesium intake with inflammation and insulin resistance.

Furthermore, scientific studies show that magnesium intake can lower blood pressure in people with high blood pressure.

Lina S Hatzistavri and colleagues, 2009, investigated the effect of oral magnesium supplementation on 24-hour blood pressure and intracellular ion status in patients with mild hypertension. They concluded that their study suggested that oral magnesium supplementation is associated with small but consistent ambulatory blood pressure reduction in patients with mild hypertension.

In 2009, F Guerrero-Romero and M Rodriguez-Moran tested the blood pressure-lowering effect of oral magnesium supplementation in diabetic hypertensive adults with hypomagnesaemia, not on diuretic treatment but receiving concurrent captopril. They used a magnesium chloride solution. The study was a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. They found out that oral magnesium chloride significantly reduced systolic and diastolic blood pressure in diabetic hypertensive adults with hypomagnesemia.

Moreover, magnesium has anti-inflammatory benefits. Low magnesium intake increases chronic inflammation risk. Chronic inflammation could lead to other diseases like cancer, obesity, and asthma.

Furthermore, magnesium can help reduce migraines. It also reduces insulin resistance, improves premenstrual syndrome (PMS), and may boost exercise. Make sure you eat the recommended amount of magnesium in your meals every day so that you can have a healthy mind, a healthy body, and enjoy life.  

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