Magnesium is an essential mineral that plays a critical role in human biochemistry. Present in all cells of the body, magnesium serves as an enzyme cofactor in more than 300 biochemical reactions, including protein synthesis, muscle and nerve function, blood glucose control, and blood pressure regulation.
Magnesium is also necessary for glycolysis, which is the first step in converting carbohydrates into energy.
In addition, magnesium contributes to the structural bone development and is necessary for the synthesis of DNA, RNA and glutathione.
It also plays a role in the active transport of calcium and potassium ions across cell membranes, critical to nerve impulse conduction, muscle contraction, neurological health, and cardiac function.
Furthermore, magnesium is considered a calming nutrient and helps support proper sleep.
Research from the Biochemistry and Neurophysiology Unit at the University of Geneva Department of Psychiatry indicates that higher levels of magnesium help provide better, more consistent sleep.
The United States Department of Agriculture has reported that 57 percent of the U.S. population does not meet the recommended dietary allowance for levels of magnesium. Some people are at a greater risk for magnesium deficiency due to lower intakes or medical conditions that limit magnesium absorption from the gut or increase magnesium loss.
Having one or more of the following conditions puts people at greater risk of magnesium deficiency: gastrointestinal diseases, Type 2 diabetes, or alcohol dependence.
To combat deficiency problems and enhance the benefits of magnesium, you can supplement their magnesium production orally. However, some forms of magnesium are better suited for diet supplementation than others.
Magnesium glycerophosphate — thanks to its high absorption rate—only becomes soluble once it reaches the intestinal tract and, as a result, can be absorbed rather than eliminated as waste.
Other forms are soluble at acidic pH levels, which means they can free up when exposed to gastric juices. This causes magnesium to bind with other compounds, rendering the substance insoluble.
You should also avoid magnesium salts, as they can attract water and create what is called a “hydration shell.” This compound of hydrated magnesium can become a barrier to absorption and could result in laxative effects.
Magnesium glycerophosphate is the best choice here as it’s protected from forming such a hydration shell and won’t trigger laxative effects.
To maximize the benefits of magnesium supplementation, I recommend combining magnesium with a number of other natural supplements.
Taurine. This an amino acid is a building block of protein, and is great for energy. It is created by the body and is essential for cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, retinal, and central nervous system functioning. Taurine can be sourced from foods, like meat and fish, but also via supplements. Together, magnesium and taurine normalize cell communication. Taurine also promotes absorption by fixing magnesium in the cell, maximizing intracellular magnesium concentration.
Whole organic beetroot juice. Thanks to their high concentration of nitrates, red beets have a positive influence on performance capacity, reducing fatigue, and improving stamina. In the body, nitrates are converted into nitric oxide, which increases muscle oxygenation and the contractile force of the muscles. In one study, dietary inorganic nitrates had profound effects on basal mitochondrial effects in humans.
B vitamins. Thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6, folate, and pantothenic acid are indispensable for the body’s energy supply, and for the optimal functioning of the muscles and nervous system. This group of water-soluble vitamins also stimulates the production of neurotransmitters. Niacin, specifically, also supports a natural way to lower your cholesterol levels. Studies show niacin has the ability to boost your HDL levels, sometimes up to 30 percent.
Bamboo shoot extract. Bamboo is a rich source of easily absorbed organic silicon, a trace element that promotes the absorption of calcium by the skeleton and restores the physiologically normal calcium-magnesium balance. It does this by stimulating the calcium absorption by osteoblasts. As a result, sufficient magnesium remains in the cell. Because low cellular magnesium levels increase stress sensitivity, optimizing magnesium levels is the best support when experiencing stress.
If you’re one of the 57 percent of Americans with a magnesium-deficient diet, you may want to consider the benefits of magnesium supplementation.
Together with taurine, beetroot juice, B vitamins, and bamboo shoot extract, magnesium supplementation can naturally boost energy levels, improve stamina, and support muscle and nervous system functioning.
Talk to your medical practitioner today to assess whether magnesium supplements would benefit you.
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