Our musculoskeletal system makes it possible for us to stand erect. Because of it, we can move, eat, breathe, or even smile. Our activities of daily living become second nature to us because of it. We can brush our teeth even if we close our eyes, our eyes get moistened because of our blinking reflex, and we can achieve many things in terms of sports, aesthetics, and adventure. This is all because of our muscles and bones working together with our brain. But how is this possible?
THE BRAIN AND THE MUSCULOSKELETAL SYSTEM WORKING TOGETHER
Our brain, being the command centre, sends signals to the muscle fibres for an action to happen with the help of the bones and joints flexing and extending the muscles. Involuntary actions happen automatically involving smooth muscles like the heart, lungs, and other internal organs that act either aggressively or passively, depending on demand. Examples of these triggering factors are low or high blood pressure, excess fluid in the body, or exercise.
Now, these impulses don’t just happen without transmitters that make the flow of signals go smoothly. Some hormones and enzymes collaborate and help in making our body respond to it as soon as possible and as efficiently as they can.
HOW DOES MAGNESIUM HELP?
Vitamins and minerals, truth be told, are essential in our bodies’ daily function. Magnesium, specifically, is needed, in more or less, 300 biochemical reactions in the body. Here are some of the functions it serves:
- It normalizes nerve and muscle function.
- It helps to keep the immune system intact.
- It keeps the bones strong.
- It helps in regulating the heartbeat.
Take one of these common functions away, and the body will suffer. That’s why it’s important to know how much Magnesium we should obtain daily to allow it to do its purpose. While dark green leafy vegetables are the main source, other sources were fruits like bananas, apricots, and avocados. Nuts, peas, and beans are also good sources of Magnesium which includes all that fall in their families like soy products from soybeans. This includes flour and tofu, legumes, almonds, and cashews. Whole grains like millet and brown rice are also rich in Magnesium, and so is milk.
KEEPING UP WITH THE RECOMMENDED DAILY ALLOWANCE (RDA)
It’s rare for the body to lack Magnesium. With recommended daily requirements of Magnesium among:
- Infants – Birth to 6 months: 30mg/day will be considered adequate intake and then as they advance from 6 months to 1 year, it goes more than double, 75mg/day.
- Children – 80 mg (1-3 y.o.); 130 mg (4-8 y.o.); 240 mg (9-13 y.o.); 410 mg (14-18 y.o.male ); then 360 mg (14-18 y.o. female)
- Adults – Among males, intake should range from 400-420 mg and the female (310-320 mg). With pregnancy, it rises to 350-400 mg as for adequate intake, and with breastfeeding women, 310-360 mg should be obtained.
CAN MAGNESIUM SUPPLEMENTS HELP WITH MUSCLE PROBLEMS?
It’s very rare for the body to run out of Magnesium to resort to supplements. However, certain factors such as diseases like Diabetes Type II, too much alcohol consumption, gastric problems resulting in surgery, causing malabsorption, and old age may result in a lack of Magnesium.
In addition to the functions of Magnesium listed earlier, one special mechanism it does is that it serves as Calcium blockers to help muscles relax when it needs to do so. Magnesium prevents muscles from prolonged soreness or tension, and uncontrollable spasms, therefore preventing it from cramps.
Like Sodium and Potassium, Magnesium can be excreted through sweat and urine. So an excess of it in the body is controllable. While a lack of it can be managed, in theory, supplements could play a great role in terms of cell utilization. However, it is suggested that to avoid cramps, it’s better to ensure proper training, hydration, and warm-up of the muscle before undergoing any physical exertion, exercise, or work rather than resort to the best Magnesium supplements when muscle inefficiency happens.