Magnesium is a mineral found in the earth, ocean, sea, plants, animals and humans. About 60% of the magnesium in your body is found in bone, while the rest is in muscles, soft tissues and fluids, including blood.
In fact, every cell in your body contains it and needs it to function.
One of magnesium's main roles is acting as a cofactor or "helper molecule" in the biochemical reactions continuously performed by enzymes.
In fact, it’s involved in more than 600 reactions in your body, including:
- Energy creation: Helps convert food into energy.
- Protein formation: Helps create new proteins from amino acids.
- Gene maintenance: Helps create and repair DNA and RNA.
- Muscle movements: Is part of the contraction and relaxation of muscles.
- Nervous system regulation: Helps regulate neurotransmitters, which send messages throughout your brain and nervous system.
Unfortunately, studies suggest that about 50% of people in the US and Europe get less than the recommended daily amount of magnesium.
Magnesium plays a critical role in brain function and mood, and low levels are linked to an increased risk of depression.
One analysis in over 8,800 people found that people under the age of 65 with the lowest magnesium intake had a 22% greater risk of depression.
Some experts believe the low magnesium content of modern food may cause many cases of depression and mental illness.
Low magnesium intake is linked to chronic inflammation, which is one of the drivers of aging, obesity and chronic disease
In one study, children with the lowest blood magnesium levels were found to have the highest levels of the inflammatory marker CRP.
They also had higher blood sugar, insulin and triglyceride levels.
The following foods are good to excellent sources of magnesium:
- Pumpkin seeds: 46% of the RDI in a quarter cup (16 grams)
- Spinach, boiled: 39% of the RDI in a cup (180 grams)
- Swiss chard, boiled: 38% of the RDI in a cup (175 grams)
- Dark chocolate (70–85% cocoa): 33% of the RDI in 3.5 ounces (100 grams)
- Black beans: 30% of the RDI in a cup (172 grams)
- Quinoa, cooked: 33% of the RDI the in a cup (185 grams)
- Halibut: 27% of the RDI in 3.5 ounces (100 grams)
- Almonds: 25% of the RDI in a quarter cup (24 grams)
- Cashews: 25% of the RDI in a quarter cup (30 grams)
- Mackerel: 19% of the RDI in 3.5 ounces (100 grams)
- Avocado: 15% of the RDI in one medium avocado (200 grams)
- Salmon: 9% of the RDI in 3.5 ounces (100 grams)
Of course ingesting proper magnesium nutrients is vital, but a trip to the beach can compensate even better!
One cubic kilometer of sea water contains a minimum of one million tons magnesium, which makes the sea a “storehouse" of about 1.7 × 1024 tons. In addition, magnesium chloride is found in brines, and salt wells. Magnesium exists in sea water as ions of magnesium.
If you live near the sea, make frequent trips to the beach, or are planning an island holiday this summer, chances are you’re getting more out of it than just enjoyment. It has long been thought sea frolicking has many health benefits.
Historically, doctors would recommend their patients go to the seaside to improve various ills. They would actually issue prescriptions detailing exactly how long, how often and under what conditions their patients were to be in the water.
Using seawater for medical purposes even has a name: thalassotherapy.
In 1769, a popular British doctor Richard Russell published a dissertation arguing for using seawater in “diseases of the glands”, in which he included scurvy, jaundice, leprosy and glandular consumption, which was the name for glandular fever at the time. He advocated drinking seawater as well as swimming in it.
Aside from boosting magnesium levels in the body, magnesium chloride also aids in the production of hydrochloric acid. This helps improve the digestion process and absorption of vitamins and minerals and lower risk of diseases caused by bacteria and viruses.
Its zero stability constant also makes it suitable for transdermal magnesium therapy, which is why it's available in topical forms, like oil, gel, lotion and bath salts. In fact, these forms are more commonly used than the oral ones, as users and medical professionals have attested to their positive benefits to the skin, muscles and nervous system.
The ocean is still a wonderful source of magnesium and trace minerals, but for those of us who don’t have daily access to a beach, magnesium oil can be the easiest and most effective way to increase magnesium levels.
If you can't purchase it or it is out of stock, you can make you're own.
- 1/2 cup magnesium chloride flakes
- 1/2 cup distilled water
- a glass bowl or glass measuring cup
- a glass spray bottle
- Boil the distilled water. It is important to use distilled to extend the shelf life of the mixture.
- Place the magnesium chloride flakes in the glass bowl or measuring cup and the pour the boiling water over it.
- Stir well until completely dissolved. Let cool completely and store in the spray bottle. Can be stored at room temperature for at least six months. I keep in my bathroom to use daily.