The human body is one of the most complex sets of systems on Earth. There are so many things that we simply still do not know about it. It is also very delicate and can be thrown out of harmony very easily.
- 1 The body is a complicated machine.
- 2 What Is Magnesium?
- 3 What are the main sources of magnesium?
- 4 How can magnesium deficiency affect you?
- 5 How does magnesium deficiency affect your sleep?
- 6 How can supplements with magnesium help you sleep better?
- 7 How to take magnesium to help you sleep
- 8 Are there any side effects of magnesium?
- 9 Should you take more magnesium to help you sleep?
The body is a complicated machine.
An example of this is stress and anxiety. All it takes is a little more of these things and your whole sleep patterns can be thrown out of sync. Getting good rest is all about maintaining balance.
Many people look at ways to help with stress and anxiety causing sleepless nights and they try to exercise more and drink lots of water and create a nice sleeping environment. Where people often do not think to look is at the food they eat and deficiencies in minerals that the body needs to sleep well. One of the most important minerals that help regulate sleeping patterns and quality of sleep is magnesium.
In this investigation, we will look at what magnesium is, where we get it from and how it affects our bodies and our sleep.
What Is Magnesium?
In recent years, one supplement that has begun to gain notoriety as an aid to sleep is magnesium. But what actually is magnesium?
Magnesium is a common mineral on Earth and is available in many foods It is essential for the healthy working of the human body and without it, we would not be able to live. All the cells and organ in our body need magnesium to function correctly, especially the brain, heart and muscles.
Magnesium supplements have been suggested to have a few benefits for our health and wellbeing such as lowering blood pressure, helping constipation and fighting off inflammation or swelling.
According to the NHS website, magnesium is a mineral that
- Turns the food we eat into energy
- It makes sure the parathyroid glands, which produce hormones important fo bone health, work normally.
It also says that we the amount of magnesium an adult needs a day is
- 300mg a for men (19-64 years)
- 270mg for women (19-64 years)
What are the main sources of magnesium?
We get most of our magnesium intake from food. Or at least we try.
The biggest sources of magnesium in our diet are
- Green leafy vegetables such as spinach
- Brown rice
- Bread and especially wholegrain
- Dairy foods such as milk and cheese
Unfortunately, though, it is not always easy to eat the right foods and get enough of this wonder mineral, and that is when the problems start.
How can magnesium deficiency affect you?
Magnesium deficiency can affect the human body in many ways and have serious health consequences.
Some of the most common symptoms when developing a magnesium deficiency are;
- Muscle weakness
- Muscle twitches
- Bone weakness associated with osteoporosis
- High blood pressure
- Irregular heartbeat
So as you can see it is no laughing matter and magnesium deficiency can have some pretty serious effects on a person’s life.
How does magnesium deficiency affect your sleep?
Magnesium is one of the most vital minerals for body health and it is also one of the top seven macronutrients your body need to function properly and stay healthy.
There are quite a few different ways that a lack of magnesium can affect the quality of your sleep, here are just a few.
Muscle cramps and pains
There have been some strong links in recent times between magnesium and muscle cramps, twitches and spasms. There has also been a link between magnesium deficiency and chronic rare health issues such as restless leg syndrome that can lead to serious bouts of insomnia at night time.
Depression and moods.
Magnesium deficiency can be a defining factor leading to depression it has been suggested in recent years. Supplementing your daily diet with the wonder mineral has been shown to help some symptoms of depression in as little as one to two weeks by some research.
Digestion and gut health.
Too little magnesium has been associated with poor gut and digestive health. Furthermore, research shows that too little magnesium can alter digestive flora to such a level that one can begin to develop depression because of it.
Stress and anxiety
Last but not least is probably the biggest side effect of a lack of magnesium in our diets, stress and anxiety. It is a real problem when it comes to getting a good nights sleep. If you spend the day stressed and anxious then insomnia often strikes.
Magnesium is super important when it comes to regulating GABA. GABA is a neurotransmitter that is formed in the brain. If we don’t produce enough of this neurotransmitter, then it could lead to chronic pain, anxiety and even epilepsy.
How can supplements with magnesium help you sleep better?
It can help your body and brain relax
In order to sleep well and get to sleep easily our body and brains need to relax at nighttime. On biological level magnesium aids this process by activating the part of our nervous system that gets us feeling relaxed. It also regulates melatonin hormone, which leads the bodies sleep-wake cycle.
It helps keep sleep quality constant
As well as helping you get to sleep in the first place, magnesium is important in aiding you in achieving a deep and proper rest as well.
Adults given magnesium under test conditions have been recorded to sleep better than those that didn’t receive any. The same adults also saw increased levels of melatonin and renin, chemicals that regulate sleep.
All these positive sleep effects are mainly due to the effect of the mineral on the human nervous system. It restricts molecules that are more excitable from connecting with neurons, therefore leading to a calmer mind.
Magnesium may help symptoms of depression and anxiety
Depression and anxiety are one of the biggest factors in the loss of sleep. In today’s world, this is becoming an even bigger issue. Magnesium has been tested to help reduce symptoms of both these disorders.
This is never more so than when a person has a magnesium deficiency, as they often happen during this time.
How to take magnesium to help you sleep
There are a few different ways to take magnesium supplementary magnesium to help you sleep easier and better. There are two main ways to get get more of the mineral. Here are the options for how to get more magnesium to help you sleep.
The most obvious way is to tailor your diet and eats foods that contain more magnesium. There are so many different foods that contain the mineral and it is easy to take stock and make sure you are eating enough of them.
Did you know that dark chocolate contains around a quarter of your daily requirement of magnesium?
Other rich magnesium foods include Avacado, chard, bananas, figs, black beans and pumpkin seeds.
There are a few good apps these days that help you track the micronutrients in your food as well. One great app is My Fitness Pal. You can scan in or manually add the food you eat throughout the day and it will keep track of the nutrients in the food. This means you can keep a close eye on what you are eating too much of and what you need more of in your diet.
Sometimes it is not feasible to get enough magnesium in your diet. This can happen for many reasons. But there are a number of supplements that can boost your regular magnesium levels to help you sleep much better.
There are many magnesium supplements available on the market. These include magnesium threonate, magnesium orotate, magnesium glycinate, magnesium citrate, magnesium chloride and magnesium chelate.
One of the most popular ways to take magnesium though is with magnesium oil. This oil is actually a mixture of magnesium chloride and water. This il has been shown to improve your sleep and help you maintain a feeling of calm. It comes in a spray form, deodorant, bubble bath, or skin cream.
Alternatively, transdermal magnesium is also being assessed as a good way to supplement your intake.
Are there any side effects of magnesium?
Supplementing your magnesium intake is generally considered safe so far as to say you do not exceed the recommended daily dose for adults. Please consult a health professional for specific instructions before taking magnesium.
At high dosage levels, some people report the onset of diarrhoea and a laxative effect. Otherwise, your body simply removes the not needed magnesium from your body.
Should you take more magnesium to help you sleep?
So does magnesium help you sleep?
Looking at the information available, there is a strong suggestion that it does have some positive effect on the human body that will aid sleep.
We know that a magnesium deficiency is definitely bad for the body and therefore bad for sleep as a result. If you are struggling to sleep, assess how much magnesium is in your diet ad if it’s not enough, by all means, take supplements to adjust your diet accordingly.
The fact of the atter id that all of your magnesium requirements should ideally be met by the food that you eat and if it is not, the take a look at changing eating patterns and habits. If you are getting enough magnesium in your diet, then there seems to be extra benefit from taking more magnesium on top of it. Too much has been shown to cause some ill effects.
In short, it is highly advantageous to keep a close eye on what you eat and make sure you are getting the right levels of vitamins and minerals from your diet. A healthy diet is a sure-fire way to aid good and deep sleep.
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My name is Matt and I am mad about sleep. I created ‘The Rest Investor’ from a belief that Britons just aren’t getting enough sleep. It’s becoming a national crisis.