If you suffer constant sleep deprivation, a persistent nervous feeling in your stomach, experience irrational fears, or have nausea even when you are sure you aren’t sick, chances are you’re anxious. And it’s no fun. Knowing how to deal with anxiety, however, can make things a whole lot better.
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), over 40 million adult Americans have experienced some sort of anxiety at one time or another, so you can breathe easy—you’re not the only one. In fact, the average person who tends to suffer from anxiety admits their symptoms are due to factors such as money issues, job stress, family and relationship problems, or health matters.
The good news? There happen to be several nutritional options for anxiety that leave you feeling just as calm and relaxed as common prescription meds like Xanax, Lexapro and Adtivan. So, when next you feel anxiety creeping up on you, try out magnesium supplements and quickly watch your anxious feelings subside.
How Does Magnesium Reduce Anxiety?
First, when faced with feelings of anxiety, it is important to ask yourself a handful of questions on that particular experience. Find out why you believe something is really wrong. Do you have tangible evidences of your suspicions? Are you sure you aren’t blowing things out of proportion? These are actually pertinent questions to ask.
Sometimes, it may seem like each day comes with a new set of stressors — whether it be a bad day at work, a looming deadline, or even just stress built up from your relationship. Whether big or small, not every anxious feeling needs to be fixed with drugs.
Magnesium can remedy those small nagging feelings due to its long list of benefits for the body. In fact, it is used by more than 300 enzymatic processes in the body, thus, reducing stress by improving your energy levels.
Now, let’s take a look at how it does this.
· Magnesium Helps to Regulate Neuroplasticity
Our brain needs to be able to create new cells. Its ability to do that is called Neuroplasticity. When inflammation is reduced and the formation of new brain cells is increased, then the brain can rebuild itself. To support the brain’s ability to rebuild itself, magnesium helps support the production of brain derived neurotrophic growth factor (BDNF).
Now, magnesium is one of the few nutrients that have proven to assist neurogenesis. Particularly, a form of magnesium supplement that can cross the blood-brain barrier may be ideal for this.
· Magnesium Helps in Stabilizing Blood Sugar
Many Americans have become accustomed to “diet” foods packed with added sugar. Are you aware that even when it’s disguised as fruit-flavored yogurt or granola, added sugar is bad for you? Interestingly, no matter how much lettuce you pile underneath it, it’s still awful for the body.
More so, evidence indicates that blood sugar imbalance is a major factor that contributes to almost every chronic disease you’ve heard or read about. This is clearly a consequence of carbs-heavy foods, inactive lifestyles, imbalanced diets, and several other factors.
A rapid change in blood sugar levels can result in reactive hypoglycemia, hormone imbalances, chronic inflammations, weight gain, and neurotransmitter imbalances. These medical conditions can contribute to a poor mental state, inability to handle stress, dizziness, and anxiety.
· Magnesium Improves GABA Levels
When it comes mental health, neurotransmitters (chemicals in the brain) help to create a balance between vigilance and relaxation. In fact, two neurotransmitters named glutamate and GABA are primarily responsible for this.
Fortunately, in two days, magnesium supplementation can boost GABA production, by stimulating GABA receptors and by increasing the conversion of glutamate into GABA.
· Magnesium Helps in Balancing Cortisol
When under stress, the body releases a hormone called cortisol, and unlike what many think, this hormone is essential for good health. Cortisol gives the body the energy it needs to tackle pressing situations that could stress us.
However, if the body is under stress for too long, cortisol rises too high, becoming a problem. This can lead to blood sugar level imbalances, neuroinflammation, anxiety, memory loss, and depression.
At times like these, magnesium can help by reducing cortisol, staving off neuroinflammation and combating anxious feelings.
· Magnesium is Effective for Alleviating Symptoms of Depression
People who suffer depressive disorders would tell that one of the worst things about it is that feeling of being alone—like you’re flawed in some way, and you’re the only one in the whole world experiencing such a feeling. Interestingly, 90% of people who experience anxiety also suffer symptoms of depression.
Thankfully, magnesium supplementation may alleviate both. It does this by helping to balance neurotransmitters, reducing inflammation in the brain, stabilizing blood sugar, and supporting in mitochondrial energy production.
· Magnesium Reduces Neuroinflammation
Like we stated earlier, neuroinflammation (brain inflammation) contributes to an unhealthy mental state. If there is an inflammation in the brain, it can lead to anxiety and depression.
Did you know that magnesium deficiency is often found in people with elevated inflammatory cytokines and autoimmune disorders? Evidently, magnesium supplements may help to mitigate this inflammatory effect.
· It Helps to Detoxify Heavy Metals
Did you know that aluminum, lead, mercury, and other heavy metals can find their way into the brain tissues and lead to inflammation? In fact, they have been associated with anxiety, autism, ADHD, and depression.
Luckily, magnesium supplements can rid the body of heavy metals and even stop them from entering the brain in the first place.
The Bottom Line
Sometimes, that anxious feeling may just need a change of scenery—a place different and new. An unfamiliar territory with a different view on how you feel may just be all you need. Who knows, finding a place to unwind could prove helpful. Also, engaging in physical exercise is one of the best ways to let off steam. Whether it’s a walk, golf or a dance class, they are very effective in stress calming the mind. Taking a step back from things that worry you and engaging in exercises may be beneficial after all.
Magnesium has long been considered positive additions to a healthy diet, and several studies have indicated that it might play a role in alleviating anxiety. Your best bet? Upping your intake of food packed with magnesium—pumpkin seeds, nuts, pink salts, avocado, spinach, dark chocolate, coffee, sprouts, sea vegetables, and swiss chard—or talking to your doctor about taking magnesium supplements.
To add to the benefits of magnesium supplementation for anxiety, it is a vital mineral that helps to improve the function of almost every process in the body. Now, once the body can run more efficiently, you get that extra energy needed to tackle the daily stressors of life.
When you can handle stress more effectively, you are likely to experience less anxious feelings in your everyday life. And magnesium is one essential key to making this a reality. Magnesium, like we’ve elaborated, plays an important role in the overall health of the body. In fact, it is very involved in helping the body handle high levels of stress that could cause anxiety.