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Nutritional Spotlight: Magnesium

When it comes to bone health, it seems like calcium hogs the spotlight. But what if we told you that it’s magnesium that allows calcium to get the job done? And it’s not just calcium that this stealth little mineral helps out. Its enabler complex helps nearly every organ in your body function to its fullest capability.

Studies have shown that the average adult gets only about 66 percent of the recommended daily magnesium. And coffee, soda, and alcohol — as well as heavy menstrual periods and long periods of stress — can rob us of the magnesium already in our bodies. How can we possibly feel our best if we’re not giving ourselves enough of this crucial tool and keeping it around?

The Benefits

Magnesium is every mineral and every organ’s BFF. With this mineral in the picture, everything runs a whole lot smoother: It can balance blood sugar and prevent type 2 diabetes, relieve constipation, regulate bone health — it can even relieve depression and boost your mood in the long run.

One more plus in magnesium’s corner? Its effect on sleep.

We all know we should be getting adequate shut-eye, but rarely do we log the recommended eightish hours needed each night for our bodies to fully restore and repair themselves (what’s worse: As we age things don’t restore and repair as quickly as they used to). Magnesium can improve not only the quality of sleep but also the duration. It’s also been shown to ward off insomnia.

The Best Bets

High-magnesium foods include dark leafy greens, avocados, nuts and seeds, fish, beans, whole grains, and dark chocolate. Daily supplements we like are Natural Calm’s delicious powder (just add water!) or KAL magnesium glycinate.

Photo: cegli

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