Magnesium is one of the most common minerals on earth and is present in many foods. It’s essential for human health and is used in over 600 cellular reactions throughout your body. Magnesium supplements have been linked to a number of benefits, including fighting inflammation, relieving constipation and lowering blood pressure. In addition, magnesium may help treat sleep problems.
Preparing for Sleep
In order to fall asleep and stay asleep, your body and brain need to relax. On a chemical level, magnesium aids this process by activating the parasympathetic nervous system, the system responsible for getting you calm and relaxed. First, magnesium regulates neurotransmitters, which send signals throughout the nervous system and brain. It also regulates the hormone melatonin, which guides sleep-wake cycles in your body. Second, this mineral binds to gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptors. GABA is the neurotransmitter responsible for quieting down nerve activity. It is the same neurotransmitter used by sleep drugs like Ambien. By helping to quiet the nervous system, magnesium may help prepare your body and mind for sleep.
Staying Asleep and Sleeping Better
Not only can magnesium help you get to sleep, but it plays a part in helping you achieve deep and restful sleep as well. In one study, older adults were given 500 mg of magnesium or a placebo. Overall, the magnesium group had better quality of sleep. This group also exhibited higher levels of renin and melatonin, two hormones that help regulate sleep.
How Much to Take
The Institute of Medicine suggests a daily dietary intake of 310–360 mg of magnesium for adult women and 400–420 mg for adult men. You can get magnesium through drinking water and eating foods such as green vegetables, nuts, cereals, meat, fish and fruit.
Read the full article from Healthline here: www.healthline.com/nutrition/magnesium-and-sleep#section5