Magnesium has been referred to as the "miracle mineral," and for a good reason. It is essential for your body, and many people are deficient in magnesium today. While magnesium is present in many foods, it's not abundantly available due to the lack of magnesium in our soil. Nuts, beans, leafy greens, and seeds all contain magnesium. Consuming this mineral helps support your brain, heart, mood, and blood sugar levels. Taking a magnesium supplement is an excellent way to ensure that your body gets what it needs to stay healthy. Many different forms of magnesium provide different benefits to the body, but one of the most well-known forms is magnesium carbonate.
What Is Magnesium Carbonate?
Magnesium carbonate is a specific type of magnesium, one of many salts of magnesium that is used clinically. It's a compound, and its formula is mgCO3, meaning it has one magnesium molecule bonded to three carbonate molecules. Carbonate is a salt from carbonic acid, which occurs when carbon dioxide dissolves in water. Commonly referred to as magnesite, magnesium carbonate is extracted from the mineral itself. It's a common magnesium supplement used to increase the amount of magnesium in the body. Magnesium carbonate's most common uses are to treat gastrointestinal symptoms like dyspepsia, heartburn, constipation, and acid reflux disease, as it can work as an antacid or laxative.
What Does Magnesium Carbonate Do for Your body?
Every cell in the human body contains magnesium and needs it to function. It's found throughout your body, and around 60% of magnesium in the body is located in the bone, while the remainder is located in soft tissues, fluids, and muscles. Magnesium acts as a cofactor to other molecules during biochemical reactions in your body. These reactions performed by enzymes are responsible for more than 600 reactions in your body, some of which include:
- Creating energy by converting food into energy
- Forming proteins from amino acids
- Maintaining genes by repairing and creating RNA and DNA
- Muscle movements by helping with muscle relaxation and contraction
- Nervous system regulation by acting as a neurotransmitter regulator. Neurotransmitters are responsible for sending messages throughout your brain and nervous system.
Studies show that around half of all adults in the U.S. get less than half of the recommended daily magnesium amount for daily consumption.
When Should You Take Magnesium Carbonate?
The best way to take magnesium is with meals; whether you should take it in the morning or night depends on how your body reacts to it. Some people find that taking a magnesium supplement at night can help them get a better night's rest, while others find that taking their magnesium in the morning helps them have a calm and productive day. Some people split their doses and take one serving in the morning and one or two at night. When taking a magnesium supplement, it's best to follow the directions on the bottle and consult a medical professional if you have any questions.
Is Magnesium Carbonate a Good Form to Take?
As a supplement, magnesium carbonate aids in administering magnesium to the body. It helps to bring magnesium levels up to their proper levels. Having the right amount of magnesium in your body has many benefits. Low levels of minerals in the body can cause health problems, and bringing them up to optimal levels can help the body's vital functions to be performed more efficiently. Understanding the role of magnesium in the body and its benefits is crucial to understanding why it's so important to have the proper magnesium levels.
Is Magnesium Carbonate Good for Muscles?
Magnesium carbonate has many benefits for your overall health and wellness. Supplementing with magnesium, in general, can help support your muscle health, and magnesium carbonate isn't an exception to that rule. In addition to aiding in the contraction and relaxation of muscles, it benefits the body in many other ways. What are some of the other benefits of magnesium carbonate?
Supports Overall Health in the Body
Magnesium is directly involved in hundreds of biochemical reactions throughout the body. It aids in creating energy from food, creating new proteins from amino acids, and repairing and creating RNA and DNA. It also is essential to bone health while helping to regulate the nervous system. The muscular system in the body is more relaxed when taking magnesium.
Relieves Upset Stomach and Heartburn
Magnesium helps soften the stool by drawing water into the intestines while calming the muscles of the intestines. It helps encourage healthy bowel movements and can neutralize stomach acid. Because of increased bowel movements, the stomach acid moves down the stomach and away from the esophagus. When taken as a supplement, magnesium helps aid in neutralizing stomach acid. For those familiar with the burning sensation of acid reflux, that is a great relief.
Supports a Healthy Heart
When people have a magnesium deficiency, they can have higher blood pressure levels and higher cholesterol levels, plaque can build up in their arteries, and there may even be calcification of soft tissues. Since magnesium helps muscles, it can help improve all of these conditions.
How Much Should You Consume Daily?
While you can't overdose on magnesium, taking too much isn't helpful. The recommended daily amount depends on a few factors, mainly whether you're a man or a woman and if you're pregnant or breastfeeding. The recommended dietary allowance for adults 19-51 years is 310-320 mg for women and 400-420 mg daily for men. If you're a pregnant woman, it's advisable to take 350-360 mg daily, and a lactating woman should take 310-320 mg.
When your body is under stress- whether physiological, mental, or emotional- it burns through magnesium, so it's a good idea to increase the intake if you're going through a stressful period. It's essential to take the correct form of magnesium because some forms act as a more potent laxative, and if you take a higher dose, you may experience cramping, diarrhea, and nausea. If you acquire magnesium from food sources and take a magnesium supplement, that won't cause any harm as the kidneys will eliminate excess amounts through urine. With many different forms of magnesium available, there's one sure to fit your needs. You may have to try a few different kinds, but finding what works best for your body can be very helpful.
Magnesium Can Help With Depression
Research has suggested that magnesium can help treat and prevent depression and anxiety. One of the theories is that a magnesium deficiency may make your body more susceptible to stress, which can magnify depression and anxiety symptoms. Magnesium assists with neurological pathways, and when they aren't functioning correctly, it may lead to mood disorders like anxiety and depression. Lower magnesium levels in the body have been linked to increased depression and anxiety. However, it's not been shown that magnesium is an effective treatment for mood disorders, so more research needs to be performed to assess this information better.
It May Help Regulate Blood Sugar
Since magnesium assists enzymes in the body, the ones responsible for regulating insulin activity and blood sugar aren't excluded. Studies have shown an association between diets low in magnesium and an increased risk of type 2 diabetes. However, in clinical trials of magnesium supplementation in people with diabetes, some found an improvement in their insulin sensitivity when the magnesium deficiency was corrected, but others exhibited no change. The results also have mixed effectiveness of supplements improving their overall blood sugar control. While research shows that it may help regulate blood sugar levels, it's essential to work with a doctor if you have blood sugar issues.
May Help With Migraines
Clinical studies have discovered that people with migraines generally have low magnesium levels, and magnesium supplementation has been prescribed as a complementary treatment. In one study, migraine sufferers were given the normal medications for migraines intravenously, and others were given magnesium intravenously. Those who received the intravenous magnesium reported more relief than those given the typical migraine medications. Trials have shown that magnesium supplements for up to three months protect against migraines. One study showed magnesium is faster-acting and more effective than a typical treatment. The National Headache Foundation suggests 400-600mg of magnesium daily to reduce migraines, but consult your doctor before you begin supplementing with magnesium. Since magnesium helps with neurotransmitters, it makes sense that it could be helpful with migraine relief.
Magnesium Supplementation May Help
If you've been dealing with health issues or want to work towards optimal health, supplementing with magnesium may help alleviate symptoms or make you feel better overall. Since it's involved in so many bodily processes, getting more in your body can help significantly improve your overall health and wellness. Start with a lower dose and then increase as you see fit. Start a magnesium supplement and see how it affects your life!