I recently experienced a bout of extreme cramps, yes these were the dreaded menstrual kind and it was on the back of a few nights in a row of staring into the darkness willing myself to go to sleep.
Truth be told I haven’t always been the world’s best sleeper, which is why I have developed such a strong affinity with Yoga and Meditation. This has made a huge difference in my life by giving me the tools to switch my mind off at night to get some much-needed shut eye. You can read more in the blog about this here>>.
Magnesium is often spoken about as a treatment for cramps of all kinds and interestingly sleeplessness, so I sprayed some of the Ancient Minerals Magnesium Oil on to my arms and shoulders along with taking an Active Elements 3.1, which also works to treat cramps and an hour later my cramps were gone, that night I slept well too!
Which begs the question why is magnesium so important?
Well its crucial to nerve transmission, muscle contraction, blood coagulation, energy production, nutrient metabolism along with bone and cell formation.
So what does magnesium actually do in the body?
Its required for more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body and as has numerous health benefits, including the transmission of nerve impulses, body temperature regulation, detoxification, energy production, and the formation of healthy bones and teeth
What are the best dietary sources?
I have to admit I don’t regularly take a magnesium supplement, because I focus on eating a balanced diet to avoid deficiencies. However, there are times when our body may not be readily absorbing all we need through food. This can be caused by not regularly getting your 3 serves of vegetables per day, drinking too much alcohol, coffee or tea, taking antibiotics or too much sugar. Also, poor absorption issues such as leaky gut can all affect how we absorb the magnesium we ingest either from food or oral supplements.
Magnesium is best found in organic produce in green leafy vegetables like Spinach and Chard. It is also found in Pumpkin seeds, Almonds, Kefir, Avocadoes and dark chocolate (so that explains those cravings!)
Like anything too much magnesium is not good for us, but what are the signs you aren’t getting enough magnesium?
Symptoms of poor magnesium intake can include muscle cramps tremors, spasms and weakness, hyper-excitability, facial tics, poor sleep, loss of appetite, irritability, hormone imbalance and PMS, chronic fatigue, poor memory and chronic pain. It pays to ensure that you get adequate magnesium before signs of deficiency occur.
What is the best way to get magnesium?
Other than naturally occurring dietary sources, most of us know of magnesium in it’s oral supplement form. It turns out that transdermal (via our skin) is the best way to ensure our body is able to make use of the magnesium, which is why a concentrated oil, like the Ancient Minerals one that I use, or a bath or foot soak in Magnesium flakes is the most bioavailable way to give your magnesium levels a boost.
A Targeted supplementation using a homeopathic formula like Active Elements 3.1 or 2.3 if your levels are low can also assist with reducing a combination of symptoms like relieving stress and mild anxiety, improving physical and mental energy, menstrual pain, cramps and more.
Aside from being a blissful way to relax and wind down before bed, a soak with Magnesium bath flakes has other benefits too, it is detoxifying and can assist with adult and children’s skin conditions like Eczema, Dermatitis and Psoriasis.