Magnesium is an essential mineral for human nutrition. It plays an important role in assisting more than 300 enzymes to carry out various chemical reactions in the body such as building proteins and strong bones and regulating blood sugar, blood pressure, and muscle and nerve functions. One particularly important function of magnesium in the body is its role in energy production. It works with Adenosine triphosphate -the body’s energy currency- to enter the cell’s mitochondria and maintain optimal energy production.
The brain uses a disproportionate amount of energy compared to the rest of the body (about 20 percent) despite being only 2 percent of the body’s total weight. Recent studies have demonstrated that a deficiency of Magnesium may lead to an impact on cognition given the amount of energy necessary for the brain to function optimally. These studies correlate with others that are finding magnesium levels are reduced in acute and chronic brain diseases. Maintaining optimal levels of it is one of the ways to support cognitive function along with other biological processes. Unfortunately, as of 2015, only about 50% of the United States population consumes the daily requirement of magnesium in their diets. It is one of the minerals that are able to cross the Blood-brain barrier, supplementing daily has been shown to be an effective way to reach optimal levels. Increased levels of Magnesium in the brain have been shown to:
- Improve regulation of neurotransmitter signaling in the brain
- Enhance different forms of learning and memory
- Promote synaptic plasticity
- Help delay age-related cognitive decline
- Increase production of neural stem cells
- Improve cognitive flexibility
- Control oxidative stress and inflammatory processes
- Maintain proper brain blood flow
Magnesium and the Brain
Being mindful of the sources of Magnesium in your diet can help you to reach the optimal levels. Foods found to be rich in Magnesium include pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, almonds, and dark leafy greens like spinach. If you believe there is not enough in your diet, you can also increase your intake by incorporating a powdered or pill-form Magnesium supplement into your daily routine.
For more information or to find a supplement at our office, please contact Premier Health and Wellness by visiting the site or by contacting the staff at (512) 459-4405.