Magnesium is an essential mineral that plays a role in hundreds of physiological functions. For example, it helps regulate blood pressure, supports bone health, and assists in protein formation. The scientific community has long recognized magnesium’s importance in maintaining health. Studies have shown that low magnesium levels are associated with a higher risk for heart disease, osteoporosis, and diabetes. In addition, magnesium benefits the body in many ways, improving sleep quality and decreasing anxiety levels.
Magnesium is found in various foods, including spinach, pumpkin seeds, and avocados. The Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) for magnesium is between 310-420 milligrams per day for men and 320-360 milligrams per day for women.
Since most people don’t get enough magnesium in their diets, it’s essential to consider taking a supplement. However, the best forms of magnesium for an average person will vary on their individual needs and health goals. Ultimately, this is a decision they should make after consulting with a doctor and learning more about the benefits of magnesium.Let’s explore how magnesium may benefit overall health and why it’s essential to get enough of this mineral in one’s diet.
Magnesium is a vasodilator, meaning it helps to relax blood vessels. This benefits people at risk for hypertension, as magnesium can help lower blood pressure. In one study, participants received 400 mg of magnesium or placebo daily for three months. Both groups experienced reductions in systolic and diastolic BP. However, only those who took magnesium significantly decreased systolic and diastolic BP compared to baseline levels.
Magnesium also has anti-inflammatory effects that may be protective against cardiovascular disease by inhibiting NF-κB activation and reducing proinflammatory cytokines (these are proteins produced by cells that trigger inflammation). In addition, studies show that increasing the intake of foods rich in calcium decreases heart disease risk factors such as C-reactive protein (CRP), an inflammatory marker associated with atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries due to plaque buildup). Based on these findings, increasing magnesium and calcium intake may help reduce the risk of stroke by protecting against atherosclerosis.