Could your health problems actually be magnesium deficiency symptoms? The symptoms can be anything from headaches to PMS. Chances are you’re deficient in this mineral as more than 80% of the population is not getting enough magnesium.
Low magnesium is often overlooked, especially by doctors who rarely consider the role of nutrition and vitamins. Yet, there are hundreds of magnesium deficiency symptoms that this can cause, in addition to many diseases that can be exacerbated.
Almost a year ago, I went to my family doctor because I was having painful menstrual cramps every month. I asked him what could be causing this and what I should do about it. His response was that it was genetic; there’s nothing that can be done. His only suggestion was to take an over the counter medication to deal with the pain. But, after researching this online, I found that menstrual cramps are one of the common magnesium deficiency symptoms. Eager to try this, I corrected my ratio of calcium and magnesium and within a month voila! No more cramps!
Sadly, doctors today know little to none about the importance of magnesium in the body and the resulting magnesium deficiency symptoms. Your best hope is to be your own doctor and research magnesium deficiency symptoms to find out if this could be the cause.
Why Are we not Getting Enough Magnesium?
It is very hard to get enough magnesium through your diet, no matter how healthy you eat. This is because modern farming processes have depleted our soil of adequate natural magnesium. Also, there are many other factors that significantly decrease the amount of magnesium absorbed in our bodies. These include:
-Stress: Many of us experience high levels of stress on a daily basis. When we experience stress or anxiety, this causes our bodies to deplete our magnesium.
-Diet: Certain foods can also result in a decrease in magnesium such as caffeine, alcohol, and sugar. It has been estimated that it takes 287 molecules of magnesium to metabolize one glucose molecule.
-Medications: There are many over-the-counters and prescription medications that deplete magnesium. These include: birth control pills, diuretics, insulin, and antibiotics.
Why You Need Magnesium
Magnesium is a mineral that is responsible for numerous bodily processes. It is the fourth most abundant mineral in our bodies and is essential for carrying out over 300 reactions within the body.
Magnesium is commonly known for helping relieve constipation, but that is just one of it’s many crucial roles in the body. Magnesium is important for the functioning of your heart, muscles, kidneys, and balancing many other nutrients such as calcium and potassium. Having adequate magnesium levels has been found to ward off diabetes, prevent osteoporosis, and improve blood pressure.
12 Common Magnesium Deficiency Symptoms:
2. Weak Bones
3. Low Energy
5. Inability to Sleep
6. PMS and Hormonal Imbalances
10. Abnormal Heart Rhythm
11. Muscle Tension, Spasms, Cramps
These are just a few of the most common magnesium deficiency symptoms. Additional magnesium deficiency symptoms include: constipation, vertigo, stiff and achy muscles, insomnia, and muscle weakness. There are many more health problems that having low magnesium can cause. If you think you may be experiencing a magnesium deficiency symptom, but it’s not listed above, make sure to do a thorough search online.
Additional Conditions/Diseases Associated with Magnesium Deficiency:
Much research has found that individuals with magnesium deficiency are at an increased risk for developing diabetes, high blood pressure, Parkinson’s, kidney stones, and restless legs syndrome, just to name a few.
How to Find Out if You’re Truly Deficient in Magnesium
When comes to determining if you have a magnesium deficiency, unfortunately, there is not a great way to find out, such as from a test. There are blood tests that can be used to check the level of magnesium in your body to evaluate if you have magnesium deficiency; however, they have been found to be inaccurate. This is because the blood serum tests only give a reading of the level of magnesium in your blood and only one percent of the magnesium in your body is distributed in your blood. Thus, you have to rely on making a diagnosis for magnesium deficiency based on magnesium deficiency symptoms, not a blood test.
It is best to look at the symptoms your experiencing and try supplementing with magnesium and evaluate whether it helped or not.
For me, after looking at the list of magnesium deficiency symptoms, I knew there were at least 3 that I had and it was likely that I had a magnesium deficiency. I also have some anxiety and I’m sure that was contributing to my decreased magnesium.
How to Increase Your Magnesium:
There are several ways you can increase your magnesium.
1. Use Epsom salts – Add Epsom salts to your bath or make a foot bath. Magnesium is highly absorbed through the skin (transdermally) .
2. Apply magnesium oil – Similar to Epsom salts, magnesium oil is made from adding the magnesium flakes (see them here) to water. You can add them to your bath, make a small mixture and spray it on your skin or rub it on with a washcloth. You can also, buy it pre-made.
3. Eat foods high in magnesium – such as leafy green vegetables and nuts. (however, with magnesium deficiency, it would be tough to raise your levels enough solely through diet) This is a helpful chart that lists foods high in magnesium.
4. Take a magnesium supplement.
My Experience with Treating Magnesium Deficiency:
After I started researching magnesium deficiency, the more I explored it, the more I thought I found the cause of my health issues. However, my doctor ignored me when I brought up the fact that magnesium deficiency may be behind my anxiety, menstrual cramps, or difficulty sleeping, so I had to find out for myself if my self-diagnosis was right. I started to increase my magnesium slowly, first by adding more green vegetables into my diet and taking baths with Epsom salts. This did make a great improvement and decreased the occurrence of my magnesium deficiency symptoms; however, I still felt that I wasn’t getting an adequate amount. So, I started making and applying magnesium oil, once every morning and this helped very much. After a full month, nearly all of my symptoms had been resolved.
When trying to increase your magnesium levels, you may need to use a combination of ways to ensure you’re getting enough. You can base this off your symptoms. Also, one sign to watch for, while you increase your magnesium, is diarrhea, if you’re getting too much this will occur.
Do you think you’re not getting enough magnesium? Have you experienced any of the magnesium deficiency symptoms?