We're doing a deep dive into magnesium so you can understand, what it is, what it does and how much you need!
Many people think this mineral simply helps with tense, tight muscles; but if you answered that question with “nearly everything”, you wouldn’t be too far wrong, it's one of nature’s most versatile minerals. Here’s just a selection of the functions that this versatile mineral performs within your body:
That’s a lot of different roles – which means it’s really important to ensure you and your family are getting enough Magnesium each day.
The good news is that Magnesium occurs naturally in many of the staples of a healthy diet. Some of the richest food sources include:
For some people, simply eating healthily each and every day will provide all the Magnesium they need. Others, however, may need more – especially if they’re experiencing a lot of stress; are pregnant or breastfeeding; exercise intensely; or consume a lot of caffeine, alcohol and sugar.
In any of those cases, a Magnesium supplement can be extremely helpful.
According to the New Zealand Ministry of Health guidelines, Kiwi men need between 400-420mg of elemental Magnesium each day, depending on their age. For women, the level is lower, 310-320mg (unless you’re pregnant, in which case the recommendation is 350-400mg). Again, the exact amount depends on your age.
Keep in mind that this recommendation is for your intake of elemental Magnesium from ALL sources: both food and supplements.
If you look at different Magnesium supplements, you’ll notice something interesting about the way they’re labelled. Some will talk about total Magnesium content, where others only talk about “elemental Magnesium”. Here’s why knowing the difference between the two is important.
First off, understand that Magnesium doesn’t naturally exist on its own. Instead, it forms “salts” with other substances, for example Magnesium oxide, which is what you’ll see on a supplement label. The “elemental Magnesium” is then the amount of actual Magnesium within each salt.
For example, Magnesium oxide is about 60% Magnesium, which means that 400mg of Magnesium oxide only provides 241mg of actual elemental Magnesium. Other salts provide even lower percentages.
So if you want to know how much actual Magnesium is in your supplement, you need to know the amount of elemental Magnesium it contains.
There are a vast number of Magnesium supplements on the market. The right one for you will depend on the amount of elemental Magnesium you need, plus a host of other factors. Contact our expert Healtheries naturopaths toll free on 0800 848 254 to get personalised advice and recommendations on the best possible option for you.
Date:Saturday, 1 October 2016
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