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Symptoms of Magnesium Deficiency

Symptoms of Magnesium Deficiency

Updated 27th April 2018

Magnesium deficiency is commonly referred to as a ‘modern day silent epidemic’ or an ‘invisible deficiency’, because it is difficult to detect in a clinical setting. The most commonly used test – blood serum magnesium – is generally considered to be inaccurate in identifying low levels, and this is because less than 1% of body magnesium is found in the blood, and only 0.3% is found in serum. Serum magnesium levels are kept under tight control by the body, and are usually normal, even when there is a nutritional magnesium deficiency. The majority (99%) of the body’s magnesium is actually found in bone, muscles and non-muscular soft tissue.1 In addition, many of the signs of low magnesium are common symptoms of other health problems too, making a clinical diagnosis of low magnesium very difficult.

A typical Western diet fails miserably when it comes to supplying magnesium, mainly because this vital mineral is lost during modern day food processing and refining methods. Today’s intensive farming practises have led to declining levels of nutrients in crops too. A 2004 study published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition compared modern day nutrient content of vegetables with 1950 levels and found declines to be as much as 40%.2

With magnesium being involved in over 600 bodily reactions, and many people likely to have low levels, it is important to be aware of the early warning signs so you can take action to increase levels as soon as possible.

Early warning signs of low magnesium

•  Loss of appetite
•  Nausea
•  Headache
•  Muscle cramps / spasms
•  Low energy / fatigue
•  Weakness
•  Blood sugar imbalance
•  Sleep problems
•  PMS
•  Irritability
•  Inability to cope with stress
•  Constipation

Common health problems that may be associated with low magnesium

• Anxiety & panic attacks
• Depression
• Fatigue
• Sleep problems
• High blood pressure
• Nerve problems
• Blood sugar imbalance / Diabetes
• Osteoporosis
• Blood clots
• Muscle cramps / spasms
• Headaches / Migraines
• Infertility
• Preeclampsia
• Heart Disease
• Liver Problems
• Cystitis
• Asthma
• Raynaud’s syndrome

Want to find out more about magnesium?

Magnesium is an essential mineral that’s involved in over 600 bodily reactions and yet is sadly lacking from most Western diets. It’s crucial to be able to spot when you’re low and to be armed with info on how to raise your levels naturally. Follow these links if you’re interested in finding out more about why we aren’t getting enough magnesium and the top 10 ways to boost magnesium.

1. Jahnen-Dechent W, Ketteler M. Magnesium Basics. Clin Kidney J. 2012 Feb; 5 (Suppl 1): i3-i14
2. Worthington V. Nutritional quality of organic versus conventional fruits, vegetables and grains. J Altern Complement Med 7: 161-173, 2001.