Could A Magnesium Deficiency Be To Blame For Your Sleeping Problems?
If you’ve done everything to try to get or stay asleep (from ditching the electronics, to taking melatonin or trying to exercise to tire your body out), we’ve got news for you! You may be deficient in Magnesium.
What is Magnesium?
Magnesium is responsible for over 300 biochemical reactions in the body, making it one of your body’s most important nutrients. It is an essential nutrient, which means your body does not make it and it must be consumed through food or supplementation. It is commonly used to support energy and bone health, but it’s benefits are many.
A deficiency in Magnesium can have major impacts on your body, including your energy. Low levels have been linked with reduced cell energy production and chronic fatigue, as well as serotonin levels which help maintain a balanced mood.
Link Between Sleep and Magnesium
According to medical nutritionist Sarah Brewer, “Magnesium is needed for over 300 body enzymes to work properly, including the production of many brain chemicals such as melatonin, which controls the quality of sleep.” Magnesium has also been shown to have a naturally relaxing effect on the body, as it binds to GABA (gamma-aminobutric acid) receptors in the brain that calm and quiet the nervous system.
The CDC reports that up to 70% of Americans are magnesium deficient.
Supplementation of Magnesium
Studies have shown that taking a daily dose of Magnesium can improve the likelihood of falling and staying asleep, by helping to relax your nervous system and muscles. One study performed by the Faculty of Nutrition and Food Technology in Iran, found that supplementation of magnesium appears to have improved measures of insomnia, including sleep efficiency, sleep time and early morning awakening. This is why if you are struggling with sleeping it may be a wise idea to try taking magnesium sleep support supplements before you try to drop off!
A separate small double-blinded clinical trial of 43 elderly participants taking 500mg of Magnesium (or a placebo) for eight weeks, found that those who received the supplement fell asleep faster and spent more of their time in bed asleep.
Speak with your doctor or a certified nutritionist before beginning a new supplement routine.