Magnesium deficiency or hypomagnesia refers to inadequate intake of dietary magnesium or impaired absorption of magnesium, which can result in numerous symptoms and diseases. It is generally corrected by an increase of magnesium in diet, oral supplements, but the most efficient way is proven to be topical supplementation.
HOW DO I KNOW IF I HAVE MAGNESIUM DEFICIENCY?
One method of assessing your magnesium status is to simply contact your health care provider and request detailed magnesium testing. Yet magnesium assessment is typically done using blood serum testing, and these tests can be misleading. Only 1% of magnesium in the body is actually found in blood, and only .3% is found in blood serum, so clinical blood serum testing may not successfully identify magnesium deficiency.
Fortunately, it’s possible to get a sense of where your intake may lie simply by asking yourself a few questions about your lifestyle, and watching for certain signs and signals of low magnesium levels.
Learn how to read your signs below, and find out what you can do to ensure magnesium balance and good health. If you answer yes to any of the following questions, you may be at risk for low magnesium intake.
If you answer “Yes” to any of these questions, then you have a high risk of having magnesium deficiency.
- Do you drink carbonated beverages on a regular basis?
- Do you regularly eat pastries, cakes, desserts, candies or other sweet foods?
- Do you experience a lot of stress in your life, or have you recently had a major medical procedure such as surgery?
- Do you drink coffee, tea, or other caffeinated drinks daily?
- Do you take a diuretic, heart medication, asthma medication, birth control pills or estrogen replacement therapy?
- Do you drink more than seven alcoholic beverages per week?
- Do you take calcium supplements without magnesium or calcium supplements with magnesium in less than a 1:1 ratio?
Do you experience any of the following:
- Times of hyperactivity?
- Difficulty getting to sleep?
- Difficulty staying asleep?
- Painful muscle spasms?
- Muscle cramping?
- Facial tics?
- Eye twitches, or involuntary eye movements?
- Are you 55+ years old?
It pays to ensure that you get adequate magnesium before signs of deficiency occur.
But how can you know whether you’re getting enough?
According to population studies of average magnesium intake, there’s a good chance that you’re not. Less than 30% of U.S. adults consume the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of magnesium. And nearly 20% get only half of the magnesium they need daily to remain healthy.
WHAT CAN YOU DO TO INCREASE MAGNESIUM INTAKE?
One of the most effective ways to improve your magnesium levels is to combine a healthy diet with transdermal magnesium. Begin magnesium therapy and magnesium supplements as soon as possible, for a minimum of one month’s duration or until levels are clearly improved.
These recommendations are especially for the estimated 75% of the population with below the recommended daily magnesium intake.
The hope is that through measures to prevent magnesium deficiency, risk factors created by long-standing chronic low magnesium could be addressed in more people before severe symptoms and chronic disease develop.
Given the extreme prevalence of low magnesium intake in most developed countries, wider use of magnesium supplements may be the only solution to this silent epidemic.