When you check your periodic table of elements, you’ll see an element with the symbol Mg. But what is it and what does this element do?
The Chemical Element Magnesium
Magnesium, also called as the Mg element, is an element that can be found in bountiful amounts in our bodies. It is also available for consumption as it is a common element in most foods; and can be made into supplements, combined with medicines like laxatives and antacids, and sometimes even added to food products on purpose.
What Does Magnesium Do?
One of the main purposes of magnesium is that it acts as a support for different body functions. It is said that this element works as a cofactor or helper molecule in many biochemical processes in the body. A cofactor or “helper molecule” is a non-protein element or compound that is essential to activities made by certain enzymes. Thus, the element is in charge of some of the body’s biochemical activities like the synthesis of proteins, functioning of the muscles and nerves, controlling of the blood glucose, and also by regulating the blood pressure.
Also, there are functions wherein having sufficient amount of magnesium is required like production of energy, oxidative phosphorylation, and glycolysis which are all essential functions in the body since they involve the cells and the ATP. The ATP or adenosine triphosphate is the main source of our bodies’ energy.
Moreover, magnesium is needed for its contribution to more functions such as the development of bone structures and also for the composition of the most important molecules DNA and RNA. Another importance of magnesium is its participation in the calcium and potassium active transport that is being done through the cell membranes which has a vital role in other processes like the conduction of nerve impulse, contraction of muscles, and in getting a normal rhythm for the heart.
To summarize the role of magnesium, they are important for the proper functioning of major body organs like heart, muscles, and kidneys; plus the contribution to the development of teeth and bones.
It can be said that being magnesium deficient can cause a few certain health conditions, some of them are:
- The person may experience some sort of gastrointestinal diseases such as:
Irritable bowel syndrome or IBS
IBS commonly affects the large intestine. It is considered as a chronic disorder that may need a longer period of treatment
This disease is a type of inflammatory bowel disease wherein the digestive tract gets affected.
This disease is simplified as the small intestine’s immune reaction to anything that contains gluten.
- There is a possibility of developing diabetes.
- Even the kidneys can get affected when someone lacks magnesium in their body.
- The person may also get various stomach viruses that are known to cause symptoms like diarrhea and vomiting.
Also, who person who tends to drink too much alcohol or caffeine on a daily basis is prone to imbalance levels of magnesium in the body.
In order to avoid the dangers of being magnesium deficient, one must be aware of which foods provide the needed amount of magnesium our bodies need. However, it is important to know the amount of magnesium a person needs; since it mostly depends on a person’s gender and age.
First off, children who are aged 1 to 3 years old only need an amount of 80 mg. Second, children with ages 4 to 8 years old need magnesium amounting to 130 mg. Third, children with ages 9 to 13 years old must get their required level of 240 mg magnesium. Fourth, teenagers who are aged 14 to 18 years old differ in gender, boys need 410 mg while girls need 360 mg. Fifth, adults that are ranged from ages 19 to 30 years old also depends on their gender, men need 400 mg and women 310 mg. Lastly, adults with ages 31 and above are 420 mg for men and 320 mg for women.
Here are some of the foods who are considered to have the best amounts of magnesium in them:
Known as the healthier alternative to the normal milk chocolate, the dark chocolate is less sweet, 100 percent healthier, and totally delicious.
The magnesium content of dark chocolate is 64 milligrams for every 28-gram serving. 64 mg is already 16 percent of the reference daily intake.
What more is better than a dark chocolate bar that does not only provide an acceptable amount of magnesium but also contains a lot more nutrients?
Dark chocolate is loved by health-conscious people for a reason; it is packed with a lot of nutrients. Not only magnesium, but also others like iron, copper, manganese, and their favorite antioxidants.
To get the best amount of magnesium from your dark chocolate, choose those that contain 70 percent or higher amounts of pure cocoa solids.
Famous as a nutritious fruits, avocados also contain decent amounts of magnesium.
A medium-sized avocado already contains an amount of 58 mg magnesium. That amount is equal to 15 percent of reference daily intake (RDI).
The avocado also contains a lot more vitamins and minerals like certain B vitamins and vitamin K. they are also hailed as the top fruit containing healthy fats called monounsaturated fats which my work against cardiovascular diseases.
Nuts are always known to give a lot of health benefits, specifically the healthy nuts like almonds and cashews.
A 28 gram serving of cashew nuts boasts an amount of 82 mg of magnesium. This amount is equal to 20 percent of the RDI.
Also, nuts are rich in healthy fats just like avocados. They are loved by many because of this characteristic. They can aid in regulating both blood sugar and cholesterol levels in the body.
There can be different sorts of legumes; those include beans, lentils, peas, and the like.
They are nutritious and also famous for being part of healthy diets. They have mostly appreciated thanks to their richness of containing nutrients such as potassium, iron, and protein.
A single serving of legumes, or a cup, contains a high amount of 120 mg magnesium which is already 30 percent of the RDI.
Tofu is a healthy byproduct of soybeans. The soybeans are first made into soymilk and then left to curdle in order for the tofu to form. The process is the same with cheese, it just differs in the base product which in this case is soybeans instead of milk.
The tofu is also a rich source of protein that gym goers love eating, and its magnesium content for a 100-gram serving is 53 mg. That amount is 13 percent of the RDI.
Wheat, barley, oats, and even quinoa are called whole grains. No doubt about these grains, they always had this reputation for being completely beneficial to health.
When you eat a 28 gram serving of whole grains, you will get a sufficient amount of 65 mg of magnesium, which is equivalent to 16 percent of the RDI.
Green Leafy Vegetables
When talking about healthy vegetables, the green leafy veggies top the list.
They are super healthy and known as sources of a lot of nutrients, such as magnesium.
An example is a cup of spinach serving which can provide an impressive amount of 157 mg magnesium. The 157 mg amount of magnesium that spinach has is already equivalent to 39 percent of the RDI, making it one of the highest sources of magnesium content.