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Increased Magnesium May Help Decrease Inflammation

Increased Magnesium May Help Decrease Inflammation

Thursday, September 19th 2013

People with sleep difficulties are more likely to have chronic inflammation if their diets are low in magnesium, which supplementing may reduce.
The stress caused by insomnia is known to contribute to chronic inflammation, an important underlying cause of heart disease.
A new study found that people with sleep difficulties are more likely to have signs of chronic inflammation if their diets are low in magnesium, and that supplementing with magnesium can reduce these signs.
The study, published in Magnesium Research, included 100 people over age 50 who reported that their sleep quality was poor.
After completing a diet questionnaire and going through some baseline tests, half of the participants were given 320mg of magnesium (in the form of magnesium citrate) per day and the other half were given placebo for seven weeks.
The experiment revealed a few findings:
  • Fewer than half of the people in the study were getting enough dietary magnesium to meet the estimated average requirement (the amount estimated to meet the needs of 50% of people), and more than one-third had low magnesium levels in their blood.
  • People with low-magnesium diets had higher levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), a marker of inflammation that is closely correlated with cardiac risk.
  • A low magnesium diet was also associated with a higher body mass index, a number based on height and weight that is used to diagnose overweight and obesity. Scientists have found a close relationship between obesity and inflammation.
  • CRP levels decreased in people in the magnesium group whose CRP levels were high at the beginning of the stuffy, but increased in those in the placebo group.
“The findings show that many individuals have a low magnesium status associated with increased chronic inflammatory stress that could be alleviated by increased magnesium intake”, the study’s author said.
Making sure you maintain magnesium levels
A modern Western diet, with its emphasis on fast and highly refined foods, doesn’t supply much magnesium. A recent report from NHANES (National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey) found that 60% of Americans were not getting the estimated average requirement, which is 350mg per day for men over age 30 and 265mg per day for woman over 30.
(Magnes Res 2010;23:158-68)
To increase dietary magnesium:
  • Have an ounce of almonds or cashews every day. This will add about 75mg of magnesium to your daily intake. Better still, try an ounce of pumpkin seeds, which have twice as much magnesium.
  • Add a half-cup of cooked spinach, Best know for its iron content, spinach has 75mg of magnesium as well. Swiss Chard has a similar amount.
  • Switch to quinoa, instead of rice or pasta. A half-cup of cooked quinoa has about 90mg of magnesium.
  • Replace refined foods. In general, eating more foods with whole grains, nuts and seeds, beans, and green vegetables – the richest sources of magnesium 0 will boost your intake of magnesium and other vitamins and minerals.
  • Consider supplementing. A magnesium supplement or a multivitamin with magnesium can help ensure that you get enough each day.
Reproduced unabridged the Intregia Healthcare News October 2011

Footnote from Ideal Health:

The following products are all useful Magnesium supplements:

Calcium - Magnesium
Calcium Magnesium Citrate
Calcium, Magnesium, Zinc
Chelated Magnesium
Floradix Magnesium
Herbal CA
Mega Magnesium Powder
Magnesium Complex
Mineral Power
Superior Magnesium

Related health information can be found here:

Arthritis & Rheumatism
Back Pain
Blood Pressure (High)
Calcium to build bones
Leg Cramps
Menustrual Problems
Mineral Power - a supplement high in calcium & magnesium

Related articles can be found here:

Doctors recommend a multi-vitamin a day
Minerals: Critical for Well-Being
Minerals - the First Step to Well-Being
New Zealanders need zinc
Slow Bone Loss with Calcium

If you need help or advice, you are welcome to email our naturopathic team with your health question.

Disclaimer: The health information presented here has been written for the New Zealand health consumer. It is of a general nature and is only intended to provide a summary of the subjects covered. The information is not intended to be comprehensive or to provide medical advice to you. While all care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the information, no responsibility or liability is accepted, and no person should act in reliance on any statement contained in the information provided. All health ailments should be treated by a qualified health professional.


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