Magnesium, a macromineral, supports over 300 biochemical reactions within the human body. In this article , I’ll discuss the functions of this nutrient further detail and outlining the recommended daily allowances (RDAs) along with the best food sources and the negative consequences of eating too many or not enough.


Magnesium first came to the attention of Henry Wicker (a farmer from Epsom) in 1618. He realized that the water found in one of the wells that his cows were drinking contained ‘Epsom salts’ (a bitter tasting salt that was soothing on human bodies). Joseph Black, a chemist who was the first to discover that magnesium was an element. He recognized that the chemical compound magnesium sulfurate was “Epsom Salts. In 1808, the chemist Sir Humphry Davy followed up on Black’s findings and isolated magnesium from the magnesium compound sulfurate.


Magnesium can play a part in a variety of chemical reactions. It helps in the metabolism of the macronutrients (carbohydrates as well as dietary fats and proteins) as well as some micronutrients (calcium, potassium, phosphorus, and vitamin C). It soothes nerves and muscles and helps promote healthy bone growth.


Magnesium is more important for men magnesium glycinate  than for women, but the RDA grows with age. Young children aged 0-6 months need 30 milligrams (mg) daily and this amount increases to 240 mg daily for children 9-13 years old. Adults require more magnesium than. Men should consume between 400mg and 420mg of magnesium every day, while women should consume between 360mg to 310mg. Pregnant and lactating women often require more magnesium and could require at least 400 mg per day depending on their age.


Magnesium is mainly found in plant food items like green leafy vegetables, legumes, nuts and seeds. The richest source of magnesium is the pumpkin seed (539mg/100g) however almonds (279mg/100g), brazil nuts (229mg/100g) and spinach (887mg/100g) all have high quantities of this nutrient.


Magnesium-related symptoms usually develop after 1000 mg per day or more is consumed. It’s extremely difficult to get these levels via diet alone, and in the vast majority of cases an overdose can be attributed to overconsumption of supplements. If there is an overdose, it can lead to diarrhea, fatigue nausea, stomach cramps, and vomiting.


Insufficient diet is the most common cause of magnesium deficiency. Other triggers, such as alcohol abuse, diabetes, kidney disorders, and vomiting may also trigger magnesium deficiencies. Since magnesium plays many different functions in the body it can be affected by deficiency in many different areas of the body. A low level of nutrients, poor appetite, and rapid heart rate are among the most commonly reported symptoms of magnesium deficiency.

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