Magnesium deficiency is a condition in which the amount of magnesium in the blood is lower than normal. The medical name of this condition is Hypomagnesemia. Every organ in the body, especially the heart, muscles, and kidneys, needs the mineral magnesium. It also contributes to the makeup of teeth and bones. Magnesium is needed for many functions in the body. This includes the physical and chemical processes in the body that convert or use energy.
Why do we need Magnesium?
Magnesium is an essential mineral and electrolyte that plays a role in many bodily processes, including:
• energy production
• bone and teeth structure
• muscle function
• nerve function
• DNA replication
• RNA and protein synthesis
Sign & Symptoms-
• Common signs of magnesium deficiency include muscle twitches, tremors, and cramps.
• Magnesium deficiency may cause nervous dysfunction with lack of emotion, delirium, and even coma.
• Deficiency might weaken bones directly, i.e. Osteoporosis, but it also lowers the blood levels of calcium, the main building block of bones.
• Fatigue, a condition characterized by physical or mental exhaustion or weakness, is another symptom of magnesium deficiency.
• Magnesium deficiency may increase blood pressure and promote high blood pressure, which is a strong risk factor for heart disease.
• Magnesium levels tend to be lower in individuals with asthma than in people who do not have this condition.
• Heart arrhythmia, or irregular heartbeat, is among the most serious possible effects of magnesium deficiency.
Common causes of low magnesium include:
• Alcohol use
• Burns that affect a large area of the body
• Chronic diarrhea
• Excessive urination (polyuria), such as in uncontrolled diabetes and during recovery from acute kidney failure
• Hyperaldosteronism (disorder in which the adrenal gland releases too much of the hormone aldosterone into the blood)
• Kidney tubule disorders
• Malabsorption syndromes, such as celiac disease and inflammatory bowel disease
• Medicines including amphotericin, antibodies targeting the epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor, cisplatin, cyclosporine, diuretics, proton pump inhibitors, tacrolimus and aminoglycoside antibiotics
• Pancreatitis (swelling and inflammation of the pancreas)
• Excessive sweating
Untreated, this condition can lead to:
• Cardiac arrest
• Respiratory arrest
A blood test will be ordered to check your magnesium level. Normal range is 1.3 to 2.1 mEq/L (0.65 to 1.05 mmol/L).
Sources of Magnesium –
Magnesium is widely found in both plant- and animal-based foods. The richest sources are seeds and nuts, but whole grains, beans, and leafy green vegetables are also relatively good sources.
Below is the magnesium content in 3.5 ounces (100 grams) of some of the best sources –
• almonds: 279 mg
• pumpkin seeds: 550 mg
• dark chocolate: 228 mg
• peanuts: 176 mg
• popcorn: 144 mg
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