MAGNESIUM: THE MASTER OF THE BIOCHEMICAL REACTION (AND WHY THIS MATTERS)?
Have you heard about magnesium and wondered why all the fuss?
Or how one nutrient can reportedly deliver far-ranging benefits that improve physical and psychological health? From a healthier heart to migraine relief, enhanced exercise performance to a happier mood, and sounder, longer, more refreshing sleep?
It’s because this mineral is essential to the human body. Like primary colors are required to create new hues, magnesium is needed to generate new compounds. It’s by participating in over 600 biochemical reactions that it exerts powerful effects in unexpected and disparate ways.
Think about magnesium as an ingredient; for the sake of this example, let’s compare it to an egg.
Eggs are an essential element in recipes as diverse as meringue, soufflé, cake, burrito, mayonnaise, deviled egg, quiche, marshmallow, frosting, even Kahlúa sour. Eggy protein creates structure and stability while adding moisture and viscosity. The egg, in essence, enables a biochemical reaction to occur that allows the transformation of one thing into another. Magnesium is similar.
While eggs enable culinary transformations, magnesium is essential for biochemical reaction processes. It is key to acceleration (catalysis) and cell function. In short, it allows your body to work quickly and effectively. But magnesium depletion is common. And it takes its toll in a number of ways…
Yet, supplementation reverses deficiency and appears to have profound and varied benefits…
Cardiovascular Protection and Health
Cardiovascular disease is the number one cause of death worldwide, with 17.9 million lives lost every year. There’s a good chance you know people with this condition. And while we readily blame genes, we often overlook diet.
Yet, as the article, The role of magnesium in clinical biochemistry: an overview, noted:
The prevalence of cardiovascular disease in Western countries may be related to the degree of magnesium depletion induced by a diet low in magnesium. [High blood pressure], [heart attack], cardiac dysrhythmias, coronary vasospasm, and premature [hardening of the arteries]… have all been linked to chronic magnesium depletion.
When low in magnesium, the many types of biochemical reaction that need to take place in the tissues of the heart and blood vessels are altered. This can be deadly.
Protecting your heart and blood vessels, then, starts with a healthy, magnesium replete diet!
Photo Credit: Advanced Orthomolecular Research
Migraine Prevention and Relief
Migraines are one of the most painful types of headache. Associated with nausea, numbness, vomiting, sensitivity to light or sound, trouble speaking, and all-consuming pain, they oft stop people dead in their tracks. Refuse is sought in bed and sleep. Successful treatment can be difficult to find.
But a study published in the appropriately titled journal, Headache, found that, when taken daily, supplemental magnesium appears to significantly decrease the frequency and severity of these nasty headaches.
Enhanced Exercise Performance
Love to hit the gym, but not a fan of fatigue or rising lactate levels?
Magnesium could be your answer.
Research suggests that this incredible mineral enhances glucose availability to provide increased energy for exercise and enhanced clearance of lactate from muscles. So you can push to feel the burn… but not days later.
Unsurprisingly, supplemental magnesium has been shown to improve exercise performance.
Photo Credit: Christine Bailey
Are you struggling with mental illness?
Depression has been increasing in frequency over many years. Then COVID-19 hit and melancholy soared; three times higher, in fact.
Yet, the humble mineral, magnesium, may offer respite.
Research published in the journal, Magnesium Research, compared the effects of supplemental magnesium (in people with low blood levels) with an antidepressant medication. The study authors found that 450 mg of elemental magnesium “is as effective” as Imipramine 50 mg daily.
While this is an important finding, remember that mental illness is serious.
The American Psychiatric Association noted that symptoms of depression may include:
- Feeling sad
- Loss of interest or pleasure in activities that were once enjoyed
- A change in appetite
- Increased fidgeting
- Noticeably slowed movements or speech
- Feelings of guilt or worthlessness
- Brain fog
- Change in sleeping habits (too much or too little)
- Ideation of death or suicide
If you have symptoms, please see your health professional promptly.
Do you struggle to sleep through the night? Do you have trouble falling or staying asleep, toss and turn, or wake feeling like you haven’t yet slumbered? Or do your legs cramp, keeping you from the land of Nod?
With up to one in five people wakeful through the night, you’re keeping good but exhausted company.
There are different types of sleep problems: trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, continually waking early, or waking unrefreshed.
Once again, there is hope.
A study published in the Journal of Research in Medical Sciences found that magnesium works in a number of key ways.
The researchers divided a group of people into two groups. One received 500 mg magnesium per day, the other placebo. After only eight weeks, the supplemental experienced:
- increased sleep time
- better sleep efficiency
- beneficial change in the hormones involved in promoting healthy sleep
- decreased Insomnia Severity Index scores
- reduced early morning waking
They also fell asleep faster.
But, what about the uncomfortable sleep-defying reality of muscle cramping at night?
Other research found that supplementation with magnesium showed “a trend towards less cramps.”
In the natural health world, magnesium is dubbed “the great relaxer.” When it comes to quality sleep, it achieves this in a robust, holistic way. Unlike medications, magnesium prompts and promotes many biochemical reactions. It’s likely this widespread effect that enhances sleep in these seven ways.
That’s why we’ve included it in our ThermoSleep formula. Simply put, we believe that any sleep aid worth its salt must include this key nutrient.
Magnesium deficiency is common and appears to cause or contribute to a variety of health challenges. Yet, supplementation reverses deficiency and offers potent, health-giving benefits.
From cardiovascular protection to migraine support, powered-up exercise performance to a stable, happy mood, and sufficient, restorative sleep. That’s why we’ve dubbed magnesium “the master of the biochemical reaction.” It has an essential and irreplaceable role to play in your health. Make sure you are consuming enough!