It’s fairly well established at this point that magnesium is good for you. Of course, it is crucial for both men and women, it does a few extra things in a woman’s body. Magnesium is very important to several functions in the body, from relaxing muscles to producing our primary energy molecule, Adenosine triphosphate (ATP). But, since it is better to look for proof for everything, we did a little research for you.
Facts about Magnesium
All the organs in the human body, especially the kidneys and heart, need magnesium. Particularly in the formation of lean muscle mass, bones and teeth as it concerns the use of nutrient. Magnesium also helps in controlling the activity of other nutrients such as vitamin D, copper, potassium and zinc. In mostly the skeletal system, adults have about 25 g of magnesium stored in their bodies. Only about 1 percent of it circulates in the bloodstream, but to keep the level constant, other systems work to make this happen.
The food sources of magnesium include brown rice, bran, almonds and green leafy vegetables. Adult women require a daily dose of 320 milligrams of magnesium. While pregnant women, depending on age, may need between 360 and 400 milligrams.
Benefits of Magnesium in Women
- Pregnancy and Breastfeeding benefits
When a woman is pregnant, magnesium helps to build and repair her body’s tissues. Usually, a serious magnesium deficiency during pregnancy may result in poor fetal growth, preeclampsia, and even infant mortality. Pregnant women who are between the ages of 19 and 30 should try to consume 360 mg of magnesium every day.
Due to the stress on a pregnant woman’ body because of the growing baby inside her, she would need to significantly up her nutrient intake. In fact, according to some studies, incidences of preeclampsia have gone up over the last 30 years. Conceiving with a magnesium deficiency makes it more difficult to reach optimal levels of this mineral and even increase the likelihood of passing on this deficiency to the baby, causing infant dermatitis.
For nursing or breastfeeding mothers, the job of ensuring adequate nutrient intake for both their own needs and that of their child’s goes far beyond birth. However, usually this is the period when women are likely to stop consuming prenatal vitamins and other healthy habits they had previously used during pregnancy. But health experts recommend that these healthy habits be continued during the breastfeeding period.
- Reduces Risk of Diabetes
In one study, results indicated that women who are overweight did not consume enough magnesium and had an increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. Upping magnesium intake can reduce the risk of diabetes in women.
- Regulates blood pressure
Consuming foods that are rich in magnesium has been linked to a lower blood pressure. According to results from a clinical study conducted by the University of Maryland Medical Center, an increased dietary intake of magnesium lowers the risk of hypertension in women.
As a matter of fact, magnesium plays a vital role in relaxing blood vessels, which helps in lowering blood pressure. This should be good news for pregnant women who experience high blood pressure and disorders like preeclampsia and eclampsia. Preeclampsia and eclampsia characteristically cause a sharp spike in blood pressure, especially during the third trimester. However, intravenous magnesium can effectively treat them and curb a worsening of symptoms like seizures.
Magnesium naturally regulates high blood pressure. This all-powerful mineral helps in dilating blood vessels, staving off spasms in the blood vessel walls and heart. Women who are 31 years and above, according to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences should consume about 320 mg of magnesium daily.
- Minimizes symptoms of PMS
Magnesium helps in relieving symptoms of premenstrual syndrome. In fact it is very helpful for insomnia, weight gain, bloating, breast tenderness and swelling of legs. Taking magnesium in combination with vitamin B-6 also helps in boosting its effectiveness.
Studies have also shown that magnesium deficiency, in addition low vitamin D and calcium can aid the development of osteoporosis. Luckily, by taking these nutrients regularly and engaging in exercises, the risk of osteoporosis can be significantly lowered.
- Prevents osteoporosis
We all know that vitamin D and calcium get most mentions in sup when it comes to bone health. But some evidences indicate that a deficiency in magnesium may be an extra risk factor for osteoporosis in postmenopausal women.
This could be connected to the fact that a deficiency in magnesium distorts calcium metabolism and even the hormones responsible for regulating calcium.
- Relieves pregnancy-induced leg cramps
One of the issues common to pregnant women is painful leg cramps. Fortunately, magnesium supplements can significantly relieve leg cramps.
- Relieves migraines
Migraines, most often than not, are caused by lower levels of magnesium, but several studies prove that magnesium may minimize the frequency of migraine attacks. In fact, in one study, reports showed that people who took magnesium lowered the frequency of migraine attacks by 41.6 percent.
Signs that You May be Deficient in Magnesium
For everyone, including women, here are some signs you might be magnesium-deficient:
- Heart Palpitations
A lack of magnesium can throw the heart rhythm out of balance. Fortunately, an intake of the mineral is can help in normalizing the rhythm of the heart. See your doctor if this is happening to you.
- Flu-Like Symptoms
Certain early signs of magnesium deficiency are generic such as nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, weakness, and tiredness. However, these signs could be as a result of many other illnesses, including the flu. If symptoms don not go away after five days, see your doctor.
Seizures are caused by abnormal electrical activities in your brain. Interestingly, a magnesium deficiency is one of such activities.
- Numbness and Tingling
As a deficiency in magnesium worsens, there might be feelings of numbness and tingling, especially as the nerves require magnesium to function at their maximum. It’s better to check in with your doctor, if you feel this more frequently than you should.
- Muscle Contractions and Cramps
Muscle contractions and cramps are indications that a magnesium deficiency has gotten really bad. If you’re getting these experiences too often, it’s smart to see your doctor.
- Personality Changes
For no apparent reason, some suddenly begin to feel confused, irritable and overwhelmed. This could be a sign of a magnesium deficiency.
The Bottom Line
If any of the mentioned deficiencies applies to you, especially if you are a woman, you may need to rethink your magnesium consumption. Hormone replacement, antibiotics, birth control, and reproduction are some of the factors that can negatively affect our ability to maintain sufficient amounts of magnesium. These factors affect a substantial portion of females around the world.
As women, it is advisable for us to take a more proactive when it comes to how we handle magnesium consumption and supplementation. We need to protect ourselves against the not-too-pleasant outcomes of magnesium depletion and deficiency. We hope found some great recommendations and tips helpful in achieving optimal magnesium levels!