Magnesium supplements are used as dietary supplements for people who lack magnesium in their bodies. Patients who have lost considerable amount of magnesium due to a certain illness or due to use of certain medicines are those who need supplements most. People with hypertension and taking diuretics, cancer patients subjected to chemotherapy and immunosuppressive drugs as well as those taking antibiotics like amphotericin and gentamicin are found to be deficient in magnesium.
Magnesium supplement is available in capsule form, liquid, powder for suspension, liquid filled capsule form, tablet, packet and syrup.
A balanced diet can supply all the magnesium you need. Reliable dietary sources of magnesium are green leafy vegetables, beans, peas and cereal grains including its germs or outer layers. Other sources are meat, dairy products, chocolate and coffee.
However, magnesium from natural sources may not be enough due to many factors.
- Consuming foods with a high fat diet can lessen body absorption of magnesium.
- Cooking can also reduce magnesium content of food.
- Frequent alcohol intake can make you magnesium deficient since alcohol increases discharge of magnesium through urination.
- Hard water contains more magnesium than soft water.
It is essential to have magnesium in our body since the lack of it would cause irritability, irregular heartbeat and muscle weakness. Severe magnesium deficiency can lead to seizures, coronary spasms and personality changes.
Magnesium supplementation can also help in relieving constipation while neutralizing stomach acid. It can keep the heart rhythm stable, and maintain normal nerve and muscle function as well as strengthen the immune system for better resistance against sickness. It is also required for the proper growth and maintenance of healthy bones.
The normal recommended daily intake of magnesium is 270 to 400 mg for adolescent and adult males while adolescent and adult females require about 280 to 300 mg. Pregnant females require 320 mg daily while breast feeding females require about 340 to 355 mg each day.
Children between 7 to 10 years of age require 170 mg while those between 4 to 6 years of age just need 120 mg of magnesium a day. Those 3 years of age and below need about 40 to 80 mg of magnesium each day.
Warnings on over-dosage
Magnesium is safe for most people but might cause nausea, stomach upset, vomiting, diarrhea for some. It may be unsafe if taken in large amounts since build up of too much magnesium in our body might cause low blood pressure, confusion, irregular heartbeat, slow breathing and sometimes coma and death.