Want to relax more, take the edge off stress, sleep better and improve your digestion? Of course you do; we all do. The secret to all this and more: Magnesium.
“Magnesium is one of the most abundant minerals in the body, with effects on blood vessels, smooth muscle, and metabolism,” registered dietician Alexandra Rothwell Kelly tells Clean Plates. “It has effects on the central nervous system, assisting with migraines, stress management, and helping us sleep. It works to improve electrolyte balance, easing muscle cramps and twitches. I used topical magnesium oil nightly during my pregnancy, as the only thing that seemed to help restless leg syndrome.”
And even if you eat a balanced diet, you may not be getting enough. “There is some research to show that a majority of the population is magnesium deficient,” Kelly says. “Anecdotally, in my practice, magnesium supplementation is one of my most common recommendations, which many clients find immediate relief from.”
How much you need depends on your age and gender (check this chart for yours)—but no matter how much it is, here are some easy ways to get it.
Eat Your Magnesium
Eating the daily recommended dose of magnesium is possible — but you’ll need to make sure to include a variety of magnesium-rich foods in your diet. Leafy green vegetables like spinach or kale, legumes, nuts, and seeds are all great sources. Dark chocolate is also a source of dietary magnesium and Kelly notes this may be one of the reasons people crave chocolate.
- Spinach, Avocado and Hazelnut Salad with Ginger-Tamari Dressing
- Simple Kale and Sweet Potato Salad
- Beet-Chickpea Burger
- Black Bean Chili with Avocado
- Gluten-Free Honey-Almond Granola
- Zucchini, Walnut and Flaxseed Tea Bread
- Coconut Chia Seed Pudding
- Black and White Sesame Seed Crackers
- Chocolate Avocado Pudding
- Easy, Healthy Banana-Chocolate Chip Pancakes
Hit the Bath
Another way to get magnesium: Via your body’s largest organ, your skin. Soak your tired feet—or your whole body—in warm water with Epsom salts added. You’ll get that healthy dose of magnesium, and it feels great, too.
Find a Supplement
Kelly often recommends magnesium supplements to her clients for various ailments. “For muscle cramping and recovery, I recommend Ancient Minerals magnesium spray,” she says. “For central nervous system concerns, including sleep, I like the Seeking Health Optimal Magnesium blend. And to establish daily bowel patterns, magnesium in the form of magnesium citrate is best.”
Is magnesium a part of your health routine?
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