Magic magnesium

Fast facts

  • Magnesium is used for more than 300 major cellular metabolic and biochemical reactions in your body – basically meaning your body needs it to function
  • It keeps your heart healthy
  • Assists in maintaining strong immunity
  • Relaxes muscles
  • Helps with stress reduction
  • Helps calm the central nervous system and aids sleeping

Deep dive

Poor levels of magnesium will make you age faster

You hit the gym last night, you’ve had a horrible night’s sleep and are still feeling exhausted. Now you’re struggling to get of bed in the morning and make your way to the shower without teetering along like an old grandma. Sound familiar?

That’s exactly how I felt when I discovered I was magnesium deficient.

Magnesium plays an important role in your overall health. Did you know that the human body has about 25 g of magnesium, with 90 per cent of total body magnesium found in your muscles and bones? Muscle recovery and repair is vital in ensuring we remain ever young. As the body debilitates from ageing it takes longer for your muscles to recover from a work out and this can trigger some serious cellular damage. Magnesium plays an important role in maintaining healthy cells to prevent age-related diseases[i].


If we couple that with magnesium deficiency, which many of us experience, we see an acceleration in ageing as the body fights the secretion of the parathyroid hormone which prevents bones from storing sufficient calcium and impacts the mitochondria – those powerhouse cells in your body that act like a digestive system to break down nutrients. Our mitochondria assist us in maintaining energy to fuel the body’s biochemical process.

Schematic of the cellular pathways that are activated during magnesium deficiency that can promote age-related disease
Source: A connection between magnesium deficiency and aging: new insights from cellular studies
David W. Killilea1 and Jeanette A.M. Maier

Overall, magnesium deficiency ages your organs, inhibiting their ability to protect you from disease. It also impacts the body’s ability to regulate: calcium, potassium, zinc and vitamin D.

But it doesn’t stop there. Magnesium deficiency is a principal driver for cardiovascular disease[i], and also leads to osteoporosis, high blood pressure and some cancers. Who’d of thought this macromineral had so much power!

Dr Carolyn Dean, a medical doctor, naturopath and best-selling author of The Magnesium Miracle attributes magnesium deficiency to many ‘body meltdowns’. So it’s worth putting a lens on it.

Where do I get magnesium from?

A diet that includes lots of leafy greens, seeds and nuts, and unprocessed grains will give you a solid magnesium foundation source. However, if your body doesn’t absorb magnesium that well, you can try additional supplements. I prefer taking a magnesium citrate as the body absorbs it better.

Muscle recovery

Do you regularly get foot or muscle cramps? This could be a sign of magnesium deficiency. A few years ago, I was constantly being woken in the middle of the night by horrible foot and muscle cramps. After getting tested, I discovered that I was magnesium deficient. Since being on a magnesium supplement I don’t get cramps anymore, but if I stop taking magnesium those cramps come back!

Struggling to get enough Zzzzs?

I am the worst sleeper – ever! I think it’s because I’m always ‘on’. It takes forever for me to shut my mind down enough to be able to fall asleep at night. And because I’m such a light sleeper, getting back to sleep when I wake up is also a challenge. I’ve experimented with a night form of magnesium that helps to relax and calm my mind and body. I’ve found that after being on this form of magnesium I get a much better night’s sleep. Sleep deprivation is known to increase ageing. Good sleep is one of the prime biohacks you can maintain to optimise your health.

What are the risks of taking magnesium?

It’s pretty safe when you consume it orally, though you should ensure you take the recommended dosage for what you’re trying to tackle. Here’s some tips on dosages otherwise check with your health practitioner.


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