#9 The Importance of Magnesium in Your Life
There are certain nutrients that your body absolutely needs. Let’s look at how magnesium is vital to your physical fitness with the ninth topic of our article series, Food as Medicine.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
WHY MAGNESIUM IS IMPORTANT TO YOUR BODY
Fatigue, irritability, sleep problems, cramps, nervousness, oppression and memory loss are all symptoms of magnesium deficiency. This mineral is vital for your everyday wellness: it takes part in over 300 enzymatic reactions that generate energy for your cells, regulates nervous function and helps you better manage stress. It’s also essential for healthy heart function and blood pressure, and helps prevent cardiovascular disease, diabetes and impaired memory.
But given society’s busy lifestyle and eating habits, many people don’t get enough magnesium. In fact, in addition to stress factors, intense physical activity or special cases, you need about 6 mg per kilogram of body weight per day, i.e. about 420 mg for men and 360 mg for women, while the average daily intake is less than 370 mg for men and 280 mg for women.
IS MODERN SOCIETY TO BLAME FOR A LACK OF MAGNESIUM?
Yes, and for good reason. If you look at the quality of the modern diet and our way of life, it’s not surprising.
- The average diet is too low in micronutrients and vegetables and too high in refined grains.
- Your needs multiply due to a busy and stressful lifestyle. Because of being physically active and sweating on a regular basis, athletes have especially high magnesium requirements. Any deficiency typically results in reduced performance, early fatigue and a tendency to suffer from cramps or soreness.
- This lifestyle combined with this kind of diet disturbs your acid-base balance, which makes it easier for you to lose ions, like magnesium, through your urine.
PUT IT INTO PRACTICE
To boost your energy and magnesium intake, focus on eating whole grains, legumes, dark chocolate high in cocoa (at least 70%), nuts (Brazil nuts and cashew, especially) and seafood. For chocoholics, I’m referring to dark chocolate that’s high in cocoa (and not milk or white chocolate), because that’s what contains magnesium! And of course, keep your acid-base balance in check.
In a nutshell, I’m encouraging you to eat chocolate. See how easy it is to boost your magnesium and stay in shape? In the next article, I’ll conclude my first article series by telling you about the different ways to protect your cells against oxidative stress. Stay tuned!