Magnesium Supplements Could Be Key If You’re Struggling To Sleep

“There has been a significant amount of research which observes the effects of magnesium, including positive outcomes in certain health conditions including heart disease, high blood pressure, mental health disorders including depression and low mood; our brain health, blood glucose measures and muscle function,” explains Gilly Brunton, Registered Nutritionist at Wild Nutrition. “However, magnesium has numerous other benefits and helps support over 300 different functions in the body. It helps us relax while boosting energy levels, and plays a role in the metabolism of food, helping to regulate blood sugar levels and blood pressure. It also helps reduce muscle cramps and spasms, meaning it can also help improve athletic performance.”

But perhaps the most widely-recognised benefit of magnesium is improved sleep, thanks to its ability to relax the muscles, promote calmness and reduce stress. That’s why those who suffer with insomnia and other sleep disorders are likely familiar with magnesium already.

“Recently, magnesium has had some really good press for helping with sleep, particularly during the perimenopause and menopause life stages,” says Gilly. “Known as ‘nature’s sedative’, magnesium helps to calm the mind and body, helps with our ‘wake and sleep cycle’ via the regulation of melatonin production and can help calm nerve activity.”

Gilly also says that magnesium deficiency may be a contributing factor in some menstrual migraines and period pain, adding that “due to hormonal fluctuations, higher levels of oestrogen and progesterone, and blood loss, our magnesium levels tend to be a lot lower during menstruation.”

There’s very few potential side effects when it comes to magnesium supplements, but according to the NHS, high doses (more than 400mg) for a short time can cause diarrhoea, but there’s little evidence about the effects of taking high doses of magnesium for a long time. If in doubt, always consult a healthcare professional or dietician.

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