Nutrient of the Week #2
Let's talk magnesium! It is the second most predominant mineral within our cells (so the perfect nutrient to talk about second) and it is needed to activate hundreds of enzymes! It is required for energy production, protein formation and cellular replication. The results of all these functions are better sleep, healthy blood pressure, increased cardiovascular health, improved muscle movement and stronger bones. If this isn’t enough to get you excited, magnesium can reduce migraines, promote relaxation, reduce anxiety/stress/depression and lead to a better mood overall!
So where can we find magnesium? It is generally found in whole foods, but sometimes we are low in these to begin with! If you are looking to add more magnesium in your diet try increasing your intake of dark leafy greens, avocados, nuts & seeds, beans, legumes, whole grains and tofu.
Below is a perfect salad to increase your magnesium with leafy greens and avocados! You could even add chickpeas for an extra punch of magnesium and fibre!
-Avocado and Tomato Salad: Dice up 1 avocado, 1½ tomato, 1 cup chopped spinach and ½ cucumber. Top with a dressing made of olive oil, fresh lemon/lime juice, chives and oregano.
By adding whole foods rich in magnesium, a supplement shouldn’t be needed to reach the recommneded values, but to get a therapeutic dose a supplement may be beneficial! Let's start with the dietary sources to meet our needs! An adult female needs about 300mg or magnesium, while an adult male needs about 400mg. Take a quick look at these magnesium rich foods to see if you are getting enough! An attainable goal is to include one of these foods per day, and allow the rest of your whole foods to fill the gaps!
Magnesium & menopause go hand in hand, which means a supplement may be especially beneficial for you during this time! How does it help you may be wondering? Well it can reduce blood pressure, promote heart health, keep bones strong, relieve constipation and reduce menopausal insomnia & low mood!
Get a boost of magnesium with this comfort dish! Lentils, corn, avocado and beans are all good sources of magnesium. This easy recipe makes for a great side dish or a big cozy bowl of goodness for the main dish.
-Loaded Baked Potato or Yam: Bake a potato of your choice and top it with a “salad” made chopped tomatoes, diced avocado, canned corn (rinsed), black beans, cooked lentils, and fresh lime juice. Top with tofu or your choice of meat (optional).
If you are looking for a supplement, there are a handful options to choose from, here is a quick run down of the main ones (there are even more than this believe it or not). I got all this lovely information from aor.ca, which is a great supplement brand choice that can be found at Sobey’s, health food stores or even ordered online! [To save you the reading, Magnesium Glycerinate or Citrate is the form I would generally recommend!] An average dose that may be appropriate would be abo
ut 300mg per day, and taking it at night will help promote relaxation and sleep!
Magnesium oxide: Often used in milk of magnesia products since this form has a strong laxative effect. Even though this combination contains a large proportion of magnesium compared to the oxide molecule, it has poor bioavailability and readily causes loose stools; therefore it is considered the least optimal form to use as a supplement.
Magnesium citrate: A commonly used form that has a good bioavailability compared to oxide. It is also very rapidly absorbed in the digestive tract but it does have a stool loosening effect. This form is found in many supplements and remains a solid option for delivering magnesium into the body.
Magnesium Glycinate: Glycine is a well-known calming amino acid. This combination has good bioavailability and does not have a laxative effect since glycine is actively transported through the intestinal wall. Due to the calming and relaxing effect of both glycine and magnesium, this combination has been used successfully for chronic pain and muscle hyper tonicity.
Magnesium-L-Threonate: This form of magnesium has recently been studied to improve memory and brain function. It appears that magnesium-L-threonate is a highly absorbable form of magnesium that can improve brain function.
Magnesium Pidolate (or picolinate): This form of magnesium has generated interest because it is very inexpensive and can easily be made into a liquid supplement.
Enjoy and stay tuned for the feature nutrient next week!