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Magnesium and the Human Body | Baby Boomer Fitness Challenge

Category: Nutrition | Magnesium and the Human Body

Magnesium and the Human Body | Why It’s So Important

Magnesium crystals
Magnesium is a charged mineral, a cofactor in more than 300 enzyme systems in the human body, and as enzymes are catalysts and required by every cell in the human body, insuring that we have ample magnesium at all times is vitally important.

The human body does not create magnesium on its own, it is one of the 6 essential minerals that is required to be included in our diets. The normal magnesium level in the human body is about 25 grams, about the size of one slice of bread, though bread only has 10 to 32 mg, so we will be looking for other sources to get our daily requirement.

Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of Magnesium

Birth to 6 months 30mg* 30mg*    
7 to 12 months 75mg* 75mg*    
1 to 3 years 80mg 80mg    
4 to 8 years 130mg 130mg    
9 to 13 years 240mg 240mg    
14 to 18 years 410mg 360mg 400mg 360mg
19 to 30 years 400mg 310mg 350mg 310mg
31 to 50 years 420mg 320mg 360mg 320mg
51+ years 420mg 320mg    

* Adequate Intake (AI)

Now for a little bad news, most US citizens do NOT get an adequate amount of Magnesium in their diets. It should not be too surprising with what the majority of us eat these days, simply hoping that what we eat is fortified by our food processors and manufacturers (hint of sarcasm, eh?).

So, our options are to eat healthier, see below the foods that will get us to our Magnesium goal, or we resort to supplementation. And, though I’d much rather you put together a diet plan to get your Magnesium from good GMO free foods, the supplement manufacturers are plentiful – Click Here.. NOTE: First, as with anything you purchase, make sure you purchase from a responsible manufacturer, and you check the ‘Sold By’ date to ensure freshness. Second, don’t overdo your intake in your goal to be healthy, get proper amounts for your lifestyle and dietary habits.

Green Leafy Vegetables - Spinach | Magnesium

The Top 10 Foods Highest in Magnesium

  • Dark Leafy Greens – Raw Spinach, Swiss Chard, Kale
  • Nuts and Seeds – Squash and pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, brazil nuts
  • Fish – Mackerel, pollock, turbot, tuna
  • Beans and Lentils – Soy beans, white beans, french beans
  • Whole Grains – Brown rice, quinoa, millet, bulgar
  • Avocados
  • Low-Fat Dairy – Plain Non Fat Yogurt, Cheese (Hard), Nonfat mozzarella
  • Bananas
  • Dried Fruit – Figs, apricots, dates
  • Dark Chocolate

(See more complete list on Health·Alicious·Ness.com)

Our Livers Love Us and Magnesium

Some good news, the human liver knows that magnesium is important to our bodies, and somehow in our genetic makeup it knows to retain magnesium. So, though our diets may lack the necessary magnesium that we need, our liver works to keep our body supplied by not excreting it before it’s time.

Magnesium Deficiency

When our bodies are lacking magnesium it lets us know, even mild magnesium deficiencies will cause loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, fatigue and general weakness.

As our magnesium deficiency increases we will start having cramps, personality changes, seizures, abnormal heart rhythms and corona spasms.

And, it gets worse from there.

Now, who is most susceptible to magnesium deficiency?

People who have Type 2 Diabetes, gastrointestinal diseases, alcohol dependence, and young women and older adults (aka Baby Boomers and up).

You and Magnesium

The key to magnesium and our health is to eat good, clean food. Stick to lean meats, poultry, fish, nuts, low saturated fats, and lots of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat milk and yogurts, and in some fortified cereals. Cut down on the salts and sugars, enemies of a balanced magnesium level.

And, help your body process your foods, and the magnesium, by getting exercise regularly and sufficient sleep each night.

References:

Dietary Supplement Fact Sheet: Magnesium | Office of Dietary Supplements, NIH

Top 10 Foods Highest in Magnesium | Health·Alicious·Ness.com

 

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