Why magnesium is essential for a good night's sleep

18th March 2019 / Health

Why magnesium is essential for a good night's sleep

Zoe Milkowski

Described as “an antidote to stress” and “the most powerful relaxation mineral available” Magnesium is one of the most common, natural elements found on Earth and has been used by humans for centuries for treating a wide variety of ailments. Magnesium is also a highly important element of the human diet and is one of 24 essential vitamins and minerals; a list of classified natural substances required by the body to perform vital reactions and functions. It is also classified as a “macro-mineral”, meaning that it is required by the body in large quantities for the maintenance of good health.

Magnesium is involved in over 300 different enzymatic-related reactions and low levels of magnesium can have a serious impact on overall health, not least raising your risk of suffering from chronic health problems. Magnesium is also heavily involved in the regulation of sleep and those with a magnesium deficiency can often experience restless, poor quality sleep and even insomnia.


Magnesium’s role in sleep


One of the many roles of magnesium is to regulate and increase levels of the neurotransmitter GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid). GABA exerts its effect directly in your brain and encourages relaxation, calm and stress relief - allowing your body to sleep. Magnesium also interacts with melatonin; the main hormone responsible for the regulation of the body’s sleep cycles. Research has shown that those with low magnesium levels often also have depleted melatonin levels and experience disrupted sleep cycles. Therefore by maintaining healthy levels of magnesium, your body will be able to take full advantage of GABA and melatonin-induced rest and relaxation, which in turn sets you up for a more restful, deeper night’s sleep.


Low levels of magnesium in the body have also been linked to restless-leg syndrome (RLS); a disorder that causes the sufferer to experience an unpleasant feeling in their legs and a consequent urge to move them. People with RLS often have very interrupted sleep and sometimes insomnia, leading to daytime sleepiness and low energy. Early scientific research has shown a possible link between RLS and magnesium deficiency and that treatment with a magnesium supplement is able to reduce some of the debilitating symptoms of RLS - one of these being insomnia.


Magnesium sources


Magnesium can be obtained through your diet and a few examples of magnesium-rich foods include dark leafy greens, meat and dark chocolate


[Fun Fact] Did you know that a craving for chocolate could mean that you are deficient in magnesium?


However you need to eat a lot of these foods to obtain sufficient magnesium for your body’s needs, in fact, magnesium deficiency is one of the most common nutrient deficiencies in the modern world. Women are also at a higher risk of being magnesium deficient than men, and this risk increases even more with age. Many people therefore choose to take a magnesium supplement for a more convenient and surefire way of getting enough magnesium their body needs.


A little bit about our Food Based Magnesium…


The elemental Food Based magnesium we use in our Magnesium boost has been shown to be significantly better absorbed than synthetic magnesium forms, like magnesium oxide or magnesium glycinate. Some people can also experience stomach upset and discomfort when taking magnesium supplements, however due to the Food Based technology we use our magnesium product is a lot gentler on the stomach.