Many people go about their lives without giving any thought to magnesium, the eighth most abundant mineral on earth that is essential to the function of almost every single cell in the human body. In fact, magnesium is involved in over 300 metabolic processes in our bodies.
Things that are taken for granted, like strong bones and teeth, a healthy nervous system and balanced hormones, all depend on having enough magnesium. A small deficiency in this important mineral can lead to symptoms such as cramps, migraines and heart issues.
Why would someone be deficient in something that is so abundant? Today’s farming processes deplete soil of natural magnesium, the water we drink is no longer the adequate source it once was, and humans consume too much alcohol, processed food, sugar and caffeine, all of which deplete magnesium. Some prescription medications can also potentially cause a magnesium deficiency, including birth control pills, insulin, diuretics and certain antibiotics.
Making sure you’re taking in enough magnesium is so important. In addition to the benefits already mentioned, sufficient magnesium levels regulate blood vessels, improve circulation, promote restful sleep and even prevent kidney stones.
So how do you know if you’re deficient? It’s not something that doctors typically bring up, but you might notice some of these symptoms: irritability, insomnia, sensitivity to noise, fatigue, lack of appetite, back pain, muscle spasms, heart palpitations, poor coordination, kidney stones and carbohydrate cravings. If you have more than one, you should highly consider taking a magnesium supplement.