Magnesium: Holiday Stress-Buster!
Clinical Herbalist Reviewed on January 5, 2011 by Paulina Nelega, RH
If holiday season stress is starting for you, consider adding some magnesium to “take the edge off” your day… it will help keep your muscles relaxed and your nerves firing smoothly.
Magnesium deficiency is common – and it’s a common cause of muscle tension, spasms, foot and leg cramps, and constipation.
Along with its important role in bone health, magnesium is involved in over 300 biochemical reactions, including:
1. Proper functioning of muscles and nerves (inhibitory to muscle contraction).
2. Activating many of the body’s enzymes.
3. Calcium, vitamin C, phosphorus, sodium and potassium metabolism.
4. Converting blood sugar into energy.
The average diet makes it difficult to obtain adequate amounts of this important mineral – the 4th most abundant in the body – so I recommend supplementing with it. The best for absorption is the chelated form (magnesium glycinate), and between 200–400 mg per day.
Magnesium-rich foods to add to your diet include spinach, collards, and chard – magnesium is at the center of the chlorophyll molecule in green plants – along with beans, peas, nuts, seeds, and whole, unrefined grains. Here’s a link to an amazing chart of the magnesium content of all kinds of foods (pdf).
Keep stress at bay this holiday season with nature’s stress-buster, magnesium!
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Paulina Nelega, RH, has been in private practice as a Clinical Herbalist for over 15 years. She has developed and taught courses in herbal medicine, and her articles on health have appeared in numerous publications. She is very passionate about the healing power of nature. Ask Dr. Jan