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Is magnesium the answer to your cramps, insomnia and migraines?

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Migraines, cramps, insomnia, fatigue—if you’re an internet self-diagnoser as I am, looking up these symptoms will give you every result from tape-worm to typhoid. So when I went to the doctor, I was a little annoyed when he suggested that it might just be a magnesium deficiency1,2—in that tone that only doctors and IT staff have mastered. I demanded a CAT scan; I got an over-the-counter bottle of pills instead. And it worked.

Magnesium is one of those overlooked elements. It seems that only athletes are aware of its cramp-stopping powers;1everyone else tends to only have a very vague recollection that it burned white in science class. Actually, your body needs it—your body needs a lot of it! However, you don’t get nearly enough of it from multivitamins or from your diet, unless you are eating things such as nuts, grains and about three cups worth of spinach, every day.

Think of magnesium as your Mary Poppins’ bag, giving you what you need, when you need it. So if you’re feeling fatigued, then magnesium will give you energy, but if you have too much nervous energy to sleep, then magnesium will let you rest.1 Without it, your body inefficiently diverts its resources trying to fill in the gaps, and it’s this action which leads to muscular cramps, headaches, insomnia and all those wonderful things which can make a week last a lifetime.1,2

So do yourself a favour: the next time the internet tells you that you’re the carrier for some new tropical disease, look up the symptoms of magnesium deficiency as well. Chances are it’s the one search that gives you the solution you need.

References:
1. Cox, IM et al. 1991. Red blood cell magnesium and chronic fatigue syndrome. Lancet, 337, 757–780.
2. Mauskop, A, Altura, BM, 1998. Magnesium for migraine. CNS Drugs, 3, 185–190.

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  • COMMENT

2013-07-16 08:17:08 AM
toyer FF says:

Amazing stuff! brilliant read