We highlight the many health benefits of magnesium.

Very few people are aware of how vital magnesium is for overall health. After oxygen, water and basic food, magnesium may be the most important element needed by our bodies as it activates over 300 different biochemical reactions necessary for the body to function properly. Studies show that most people consume just half of the recommend daily intake of magnesium and that more than eight out of 10 people do not take enough daily magnesium for even the minimum daily amounts recommended. Recent research has revealed that this lack of magnesium may put your heart – and your health – at risk.

BONE STRENGTH

Low magnesium levels are being linked to conditions such as cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes, atherosclerosis and much, much more. In fact magnesium is more important than calcium, potassium or sodium and helps to regulate all three of them. Contrary to popular misconceptions, it is magnesium that is actually most important in building strong bones and preventing bone loss.

Due to its role in active calcium transport it is a hot topic for researchers looking at osteoporosis who, after a two-year study, concluded that “magnesium therapy appears to have prevented fractures and resulted in a significant increase in bone density.”

MUSCLE RELAXATION

From your bones to your muscles it appears that the benefits of magnesium are never ending. Magnesium is a muscle relaxant, while calcium is a muscle constrictor. Low magnesium intake is associated with muscle spasm, tremors and convulsions. Magnesium helps to give a signal to muscles to relax.

ANXIETY

Anxiety can affect our lives dramatically. In a time when our society is more stressed than perhaps ever before, feelings of anxiety have become an everyday occurrence in many people’s lives and anxiety disorders are becoming more prevalent. As a result, natural anxiety remedies are more relevant than ever. Magnesium, a vital mineral nutrient, is perhaps one of the most important natural anxiety remedies because of its effectiveness, record of safe use, availability and value. Research has suggested that magnesium may help with anxiety through its influence on the hypothalamic-pituitary adrenal (HPA) axis.

MAGNESIUM SUPPLEMENTATION: IS THERE A RIGHT WAY?

Magnesium, like most other supplements, is available in tablet or powdered forms but very little can be absorbed this way. However the skin has been shown to be the most effective method for absorption. Magnesium can be delivered topically through the skin via transdermal
magnesium in oil, bath flakes or gels.

Although it may seem a little odd to put a supplement on your skin it’s important to remember that the skin is our largest organ and is very permeable. Also we must understand that we lose magnesium through the gastrointestinal tract and the kidneys. That’s why when looking to increase your ‘net’ amount of magnesium it is important to lower the amount of elimination as waste through the gastrointestinal tract (the stomach, intestines and colon). In this sense transdermal magnesium is the best choice.

The benefits of transdermal magnesium supplementation were demonstrated in a study where three quarters of the participants in the trial showed marked improvements in their intracellular magnesium levels. The researchers concluded that:

  • Transdermal therapy creates tissue saturation, which allows magnesium to travel to the body’s tissues and cells at a high dose without losses through the gastrointestinal tract.
  • When taken orally, however, magnesium may be absorbed inefficiently, either due to the laxative effect of oral doses; due to the effect of other foods, vitamins or minerals in the gut that lessen absorption; or due to individual differences, such as leaky gut syndrome, that reduce magnesium processing.

So if you’re looking to benefit from magnesium it appears that transdermal is the way to go. It really is as easy as soaking in a bath, having a foot bath or applying an oil or gel to your skin.

RECOMMENDED PRODUCT

ANCIENT MINERALS MAGNESIUM

The Ancient Minerals Magnesium range includes oil, gel, lotion and bath flakes so that you can enjoy the benefits of topically applied magnesium. The products are easy to apply and are rapidly absorbed into the skin.