Magnesium is a mineral that is present in relatively large amounts in the body. Researchers estimate that the average body contains about 25 grams of magnesium, and about half of that is in the bones. Magnesium is important in more than 300 chemical reactions that keep the body working properly. People get magnesium from their diet, but sometimes magnesium supplements are needed if magnesium levels are too low. Dietary intake of magnesium may be low, particularly among women.
An easy way to remember foods that are good magnesium sources is to think fiber. Foods that are high in fiber are generally high in magnesium. Dietary sources of magnesium include legumes, whole grains, vegetables (especially broccoli, squash, and green leafy vegetables), seeds, and nuts (especially almonds). Other sources include dairy products, meats, chocolate, and coffee. Water with a high mineral content, or hard water, is also a source of magnesium.
A number of studies have previously shown magnesium can benefit blood pressure and help prevent sudden cardiac arrest, heart attack, and stroke. For example, one meta-analysis published earlier this year in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition looked at a total of seven studies collectively covering more than 240,000 participants. The results showed that dietary magnesium intake is inversely associated with risk of ischemic stroke.
Magnesium also plays a role in detoxification processes and therefore is important for helping to prevent damage from environmental chemicals, heavy metals and other toxins. Even glutathione, the most powerful antioxidant that has even been called the master antioxidant, requires magnesium for its synthesis.
Chlorophyll, which enables plants to capture solar energy and convert it into metabolic energy, has a magnesium atom at its porphyrin ring center. Without magnesium, in fact, plants could not utilize the sun light energy for photosynthesis.
chlorophyll is the plant version of hemoglobin as they share a similar porphyrin ring structure but have magnesium plugged in the middle rather than iron. Green leafy vegetables like spinach and Swiss chard are excellent sources of magnesium, as are some beans, nuts and seeds, like almonds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and sesame seeds. Avocados are also a good source. Juicing your vegetables is an excellent option to ensure getting enough magnesium in your diet.
Magnesium threonate is a newer, emerging type of magnesium supplement that appears promising, primarily due to its superior ability to penetrate the mitochondrial membrane, and may be the best magnesium supplement on the market.
Magnesium glycinate is a chelated form of magnesium that tends to provide the highest levels of absorption and bioavailability and is typically considered ideal for those who are trying to correct a magnesium deficiency.
Magnesium also plays roles in preventing migraine headaches, cardiovascular disease (including high blood pressure, heart attacks, and strokes), sudden cardiac death, and even reduces death from all causes.
This important mineral is required by more than 300 different enzymes in your body, which play important roles in the following biochemical processes, many of which are crucial for proper metabolic function:
Creation of ATP (adenosine triphosphate), the energy molecules of your body Proper formation of bones and teeth Relaxation of blood vessels
Action of your heart muscle Promotion of proper bowel function Regulation of blood sugar levels
Low Magnesium Levels Consistently Found in Those with Elevated Insulin
In just the past year, there have been several significant studies about magnesium role in keeping your metabolism running like a well oiled clock specifically in terms of insulin sensitivity, glucose regulation, and protection from type 2 diabetes.