Essential Mineral – Magnesium

Essential Mineral – Magnesium

We know that protein, fats and carbohydrates are important for our growth and development.  We also know that proteins help us build and repair muscles, fats a major constitute of our body and carbohydrates our main energy source.  However, we disregard our essential vitamins and minerals and pay no attention to them.  It’s like paying no attention to the geeks in school and laughing at them but 20 years later they are the millionaire’s relaxing on their boats in Monaco!  Essential vitamins and minerals are ones which the body needs in big amounts in order to function properly.  So we must pay good attention to them and consume a sufficient amount of them.  So without further ado let’s introduce the team…starting with magnesium.

Magnesium is an important mineral to consume and I shall be explaining the reasons now.  Every muscle in our body needs nerves to stimulate them as explained in my previous article.  But this would not be possible without magnesium.  Magnesium is a mineral essential for nerve stimulation and also muscle health.  It helps muscles relax and therefore reduces blood pressure and avoids muscle spasms and extreme contraction.  Ever had a stomach cramp?  Well that’s just the pressure your smoothe muscles are applying to your digestive tract and magnesium helps relax these muscles and in turn you avoid stomach cramps.  It’s like giving a sedative to a hyperactive person to calm them down! 

Magnesium is also vital for a healthy heart and energy production.  In order for all your little cells in the heart to contract and pump blood around your body it needs magnesium!  Also as it’s a muscle relaxer it allows blood to be pumped through arteries without increasing blood pressure and this in turn delivers more nutrients and oxygen to your working muscles and there you have it more energy is supplied!  See not rocket science at all!

‘You must drink lots of milk to get plenty of calcium in your bones’.  How many times have you heard your mums and dads say that to you over the course of your childhood..or maybe even now?  Well let me tell you something, calcium is not the only mineral which your bones need to grow and develop.  Bones and teeth need lots of magnesium too to grow and become strong.  So next time you open the fridge and pour yourself yet another glass of milk, just remember to have some nuts with it.  Usually calcium:magnesium ratio is about 3:2 to keep everything in balance and avoid problems such as calcium deposits in soft tissues – prime example kidney stones!  I’ve hears they are very painful so yeah let’s avoid that shall we?

You might think that eating lots of carbs will give you energy, well yes they will provided that certain minerals are around.  Essential minerals such as magnesium sort of unlock the energy within these carbohydrate foods.  It works like a lock and key system where the carbohydrates are locked within a box and along comes the key (magnesium if you haven’t guessed) and opens it and there you have it, lots of energy.  Wish it were gold but oh well you can settle for energy for the treadmill.  It is vital you get plenty of magnesium in your system for this energy to be unlocked, otherwise the carbohydrates you are eating will simply not be as efficient.  Not only does magnesium help unlock energy but they act as co factors to enzymes.  This simply means they help enzymes do their job, you know it’s like hiring an assistant to answer your phone calls and generally make your life a little bit easier.  This mineral helps quicken the process for enzymes which again helps a lot when you’re working out/participating in sports or just in general.

Lots of people don’t know this but magnesium does help with absorbing other minerals too!  When you have lots of magnesium in your body, the body can then absorb others a lot more efficiently.  Because it works well with vitamins B1, B6, C, D, minerals zinc, calcium and phosphorus it can synthesise proteins and also help in producing hormones.

Like I said before, it is an essential mineral and if you’re deficient in it you can show signs such as high blood pressure, muscle tremors or spasms, insomnia or nervousness, hyperactivity, depression, lack of appetite and the list goes on!  It’s not a good sign if you’re feeling like any of the above.

Right now I bet you’re thinking enough of the jibba jabba of the science and get on with magnesium rich foods!  Well that’s what I am going to right about next.  Magnesium is found in many food groups such as plant products, nuts, dairy produce and you can even get it from natural unprocessed sea salt.  Magnesium is in the chlorophyll of plants hence their green colour (thought I’d mention that).  So make sure you eat plenty of foods such as almonds, nuts, buckwheat, peanuts, wheat germ, crab, yoghurts, beans, brazil nuts, walnuts, and pecans.  But if you still want more foods or different ones go onto Google and type it in, everything is on the internet nowadays so start researching!

So from the above I hope I have convinced you that magnesium is important in our diets and these essential minerals are vital for our brain and bodies to function properly.  Yes it’s all good having your macro nutrients; proteins, fats and carbs but they need support from the micro nutrients such as vitamins and minerals.  These guys are needed in much less quantities but please do not underestimate their power in the human body.  So go on get shopping!