I’ve always thought of Calcium as an important part of my diet. Growing up I was told of its importance. We all heard the slogan, ‘Milk, it does a body good.’ When my mom was diagnosed with osteoporosis I started taking inventory of my calcium intake. I wanted to make sure I’m getting enough to keep my bones strong as I age. That’s all fine and good, but no one ever mentioned Magnesium as an important mineral to have in my diet. Why emphasize one piece of a good diet and overlook others?
Today I complained to my physical therapist of moderate joint pain. This is to be expected in a knee that I shattered 5 months ago. (See WT blog ‘Broken Leg Blues, March 3) I have been taking ibuprofen, tylenol, and hydrocodone as needed to dull the pain during the night. At this point I’m open to new ideas. To my surprise, she recommended taking a Magnesium supplement as an alternative to help with the aches and pains. I went home eager to learn more.
What I found was very informative. Magnesium is very important to our bodies and works as a ‘gatekeeper’ for calcium absorption. Especially with our highly processed foods today, many of us are potentially deficient. This can cause amplification of pain, osteoporosis, high blood pressure, migraine headaches, muscle pain and spasms, and other severe health issues. Personally, I’m currently concerned with decrease of muscular and skeletal pain. Magnesium might be a good holistic solution which could have added benefits down the road.
Of course, moderation is key. A supplemental dose of more than 350mg per day is not recommended. A safer way to be sure to get enough magnesium is from dietary choices. After all, I’m not a huge fan of taking a handful of supplement vitamins in the form of big white pills. They hurt my stomach, and personally I would rather eat foods to give the same benefit.
Good sources of magnesium are nuts (especially almonds and cashews), seeds like pumpkin, sesame or sunflower, beans, dark greens like swiss chard and spinach, halibut, and whole grains.
Making this change is pretty easy, and inexpensive. A great breakfast idea is oatmeal with coconut almond milk. Toss in some pumpkin seeds, nuts, raisins and/or bananas and peanut butter and mix. A quick and easy way to get some good vitamins and minerals! I am an avid bacon eater, but I’m willing to branch out to bring me pain relief. Bacon on the side? 😉
As always, ask a doctor to see if diet alterations and/or supplements are right for you!
A great website with magnesium milligram (mg) amounts in different foods—