Do you have trouble sleeping? When you lie down at night, do you spend more time tossing and turning than you do enjoying a night of restful sleep? You have probably tried many solutions that claim to help you get that rest, but have you ever used magnesium for sleep? We seek to answer the age-old question: Does magnesium help you sleep?
Studies have found a link between magnesium deficiencies and sleep disorders. After all, magnesium is an essential mineral required for aiding numerous body processes. Some people choose to change their diet and include more magnesium-rich foods to aid sleep, while others prefer to take a supplement.
One double-blinded trial of more than 40 elderly participants in Tehran allows us to see the benefits of magnesium to help sleep. Over eight weeks, these participants either received 500 milligrams of magnesium or took a placebo. Those who used the magnesium supplement didn’t just fall asleep faster than those taking the placebo but also spent more of their time in the bed sound asleep.
This is one of several studies that show taking a magnesium supplement for sleep might be the answer if you are struggling. Our customers have also expressed how magnesium has also helped combat restless leg syndrome, which increases sleeping time as well.
Studies also show an increase of the neurotransmitter GABA in the brain from magnesium usage. GABA is responsible for slowing down your thinking, which allows you to get to sleep. Further studies will be conducted, but we believe they will continue to show the benefits of a magnesium sleep aid.
Magnesium Can Help You Relax
One of the ways magnesium works is to counteract the stress in the brain by stimulating GABA receptors. GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) is a neurotransmitter that slows brain activity. When your GABA is low, the brain becomes stuck in an “on” position and struggles to relax. People struggling with this often lie awake with racing thoughts, finding something new to worry about constantly.
In addition, low GABA shows up with generalized anxiety disorder, irritable bowel syndrome, panic attacks and involuntary movements, such as those from Parkinson’s disease.
On top of that, excess cortisol can contribute to depression, anxiety, mood swings, dementia, brain fog, insomnia, concentration problems and other mental disorders. Magnesium restricts the release of these stress hormones, providing a filter that prevents them from infiltrating the brain.
Dr. Carolyn Dean has found that when a person experiences stress, the body releases a cascade of stress hormones that lead to negative physical effects. These events consume magnesium from the body and leave people deficient. To reduce anxiety and induce a restful night’s sleep, it can often help to increase a person’s magnesium intake.
Some people change their diet to add more magnesium for sleep, while others prefer to take a high-quality supplement instead. Both methods are helpful, as long as you are getting the recommended dosage each day. Some magnesium supplements don’t absorb well into the body, leaving users neglected unknowingly. When these magnesium supplements don’t show an improvement with sleep, users assume that the trouble isn’t caused by a magnesium deficiency. In reality, all that’s needed is the appropriate solution of magnesium
Magnesium Deficiency Interferes With Sleep
While it’s important to answer the question, does magnesium help you sleep — it’s just as important to ask, does a magnesium deficiency affect sleep?
Studies show that a deficiency can lead to sleep disturbances. In fact, a 2007 study shows that magnesium was beneficial with sleep disorder symptoms. Nearly 1500 adults were analyzed during the Jiangsu Nutrition Study. With an average magnesium intake of 332.5 mg/day, subjects were reporting snoring while sleeping, daytime sleepiness and trouble falling asleep.
Magnesium regulates cellular timekeeping in cells, allowing people to maintain a normal circadian rhythm to promote sleep. Not only does magnesium deficiency appear to play a role in insomnia, but it can also lead to depression, which further disrupts the sleep cycle.
Taking magnesium for sleep helps to restore the depleted mineral within the body and restore natural sleep rhythms. While some people can get enough magnesium through a well-balanced diet, it’s not as common anymore. In fact, the “Quantitative Factors Regarding Magnesium Status in the Modern-Day World” from 1982 says that dietary magnesium intake has gone down significantly over the past one hundred years.
Americans consumed an average of 500 mg each day at the beginning of the 20th century. Today, the average intake is only 200 mg daily. That leaves nearly 75% of Americans with magnesium deficiency. Some of the reasons that our culture is magnesium deficient include:
- Addition of refined foods to the diet that lack magnesium
- Healthy foods grown in mineral-depleted soils
- Fluoride (found in most water) binds to magnesium, making it less prominent
It Helps Improve Sleep Quality
Magnesium is responsible for regulating and facilitating numerous essential bodily functions. It’s a vital enabler to creating healthy enzyme function and works with over 1,000 enzyme-related reactions within the body’s cells.
Furthermore, magnesium is responsible for:
- Aiding energy production by activating ATP, an energy molecule in the body’s cells
- Regulating the transport of potassium, calcium and other minerals to the nerves and muscles
- Regulating cholesterol production, blood pressure and blood glucose levels
- Aiding bone development and preventing bone loss
- Maintaining the proper fluid balance within the body
- Controlling the stress-response system of the body to relieve tension
According to several studies, not only does magnesium help you sleep, it can also improve the quality of sleep. Users have reported less restless sleep and longer periods of sleep as a result. Magnesium also helps to produce GABA, the neurotransmitter that promotes sleep, allowing users to fall asleep quicker and enjoy more restful hours. If someone is struggling with anxiety or depression, these are both conditions that have shown to interfere with sleep but can be alleviated with magnesium.
Some people also have trouble sleeping due to persistent or severe muscle pain and cramps. Again, magnesium deficiency has been proven to cause these conditions. Thankfully, magnesium deficiency is easily identified, and may require additional magnesium in the form of food or supplements to correct.
Once you find the appropriate dosage of magnesium for sleep, all that’s left to do is enjoy a restful night of peace. If you haven’t tried magnesium for sleep yet, it might be the solution you were hoping for.
How Much Magnesium Should You Take For Sleep?
The Food and Nutrition Board has created recommended dietary allowances (RDAs) to help determine appropriate magnesium dosages. If you are looking to take a magnesium dosage for sleep, these guidelines offer a good place to start.
The RDAs for magnesium:
- 1–3 years old: 80 mg
- 4-8 years old: 130 mg
- 9–13 years old: 240 mg
- 14–18 years old: 410 mg (males), 360 mg (females)
- 19–30 years old: 400 mg (males), 310 mg (females), 350 mg (pregnant females), 310 mg (lactating females)
- 31–50 years old: 420 mg (males), 320 mg (females), 360 mg (pregnant females), 320 mg (lactating females)
- 51+ years old: 420 mg (males), 320 mg (females)
Magnesium can be found in a variety of food sources. Green leafy vegetables, legumes, seeds, whole grains and nuts provide plenty of magnesium. It’s also added to breakfast cereals and several other fortified foods. Magnesium can also be found in some tap, bottled and mineral waters.
However, as already noted above: Americans consumed an average of 500 mg each day at the beginning of the 20th century. Today, the average intake is only 200 mg daily. That leaves nearly 75% of Americans with magnesium deficiency.
Of the dietary magnesium consumed through food, about thirty to forty percent of it is absorbed by the body. With this in mind, people who eat enough magnesium might still find themselves to be deficient.
That’s why many users turn to supplements to get more magnesium and sleep. Still, there are varying forms of magnesium supplements, each with a unique absorption process.
Liquid magnesium dissolves fast and is absorbed more completely than other methods. If you are looking to take a magnesium dosage for sleep, you want to know that the minerals you put into your body are actually being absorbed and creating well-being. Our team can help you figure out how much magnesium for sleep you should be taking. Talk to our experts today.