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Gain Attention with Magnesium

 

Magnesium is an essential mineral to the human body. It is needed for bone, protein, and fatty acid formation, making new cells, activating B vitamins, relaxing muscles, clotting blood, and forming adenosine triphosphate (ATP; the energy the body runs on). Some children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have lowered levels of magnesium. The secretion and action of insulin also require magnesium.

Where is it found?
Nuts and grains are good sources of magnesium. Beans, dark green vegetables, fish, and meat also contain significant amounts.

How much is usually taken?
Most people don’t consume enough magnesium in their diets. Many nutritionally oriented doctors recommend 250–350 mg per day of supplemental magnesium for adults.

In a preliminary, controlled trial, children with ADHD and low magnesium status were given 200 mg of magnesium per day for six months. Compared with 25 other magnesium-deficient ADHD children, those given magnesium supplementation had a significant decrease in hyperactive behavior.

Are there any side effects or interactions?
Taking too much magnesium often leads to diarrhea. For some people this can happen with amounts as low as 350–500 mg per day. More serious problems can develop with excessive magnesium intake from magnesium-containing laxatives. However, the amounts of magnesium found in nutritional supplements are unlikely to cause such problems. People with kidney disease should not take magnesium supplements without consulting a doctor.

Vitamin B6 increases the amount of magnesium that can enter cells. As a result, these two nutrients are often taken together. Magnesium may compete for absorption with other minerals, particularly calcium. Taking a multimineral supplement avoids this potential problem.

 

 


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