Will Magnesium Help You Sleep?
Magnesium is necessary for sleep. But many people who take magnesium don’t notice a difference because it’s more complicated than just taking a pill.
There are 4 reasons why you may need magnesium and take magnesium and it doesn't help you sleep:
Your gut isn’t healthy enough to absorb it
You don’t have the co-factors that help you absorb it such as B vitamins, calcium, selenium, and boron
You don’t have enough sodium and potassium to keep the magnesium in your cells
You have other imbalances contributing to your insomnia besides just magnesium deficiency (you could also have a pathogen in your gut, blood sugar issues, hormone imbalance, liver congestion, etc.)
Here’s how magnesium helps with sleep:
Serotonin depends on magnesium for production and function. Your body converts serotonin to melatonin, your sleepy hormone.
People with low magnesium often sleep restlessly and wake up frequently during the night
Magnesium maintains good levels of GABA, a neurotransmitter that helps you relax and promotes sleep.
Magnesium can help with restless leg syndrome.
Magnesium regulates stress, stabilizes your mood and helps with anxiety.
It’s estimated that 80% of Americans are deficient in magnesium, although it's impossible to verify because there's no standardized test.
Why you’re deficient in magnesium
our soils and therefore our foods lack magnesium
processed and junk foods don't have magnesium
the fluoride in tap water binds to magnesium so you can’t absorb it
you need stomach acid to absorb magnesium
oxalic acid in leafy greens and phytic acid in grains and seeds inhibit absorption
grains, seeds, nuts and legumes need to be properly prepared for magnesium to be available (more below)
drugs like birth control pills, some antibiotics and corticosteroids create magnesium deficiencie
you need calcium (but not too much), vitamin D, B vitamins, selenium and boron to absorb magnesium
How to get magnesium
The best dietary sources of this important mineral are green vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes and unprocessed grains. However, you need to properly prepare these foods so that magnesium and other nutrients become available. Nuts, seeds, grains and legumes are seeds that contain all the nutrients they need to grow. Until they are in optimal growing conditions, those nutrients are bound up in the seed. Soaking, sprouting and fermenting mimic germination, telling those seeds to release their nutrients and start growing. Without this preparation, those vitamins and minerals stay in the seed, unavailable to your body as they pass through your digestive system.
Here are the forms of magnesium supplements that I recommend:
My favorite magnesium supplement is the Jigsaw SRT Magnesium because it’s a more absorbable form and it also has some B vitamins that help you absorb it better.
The recommended dose for magnesium is 5 times your body weight in milligrams.* However, I suggest starting gradually and finding your optimal dose. Start with 1 pill and add one at a time until you reach your dose or get loose stools. If you get loose stools, decrease by 1 pill and you're at your optimal dose.
Our body absorbs topical magnesium much better than oral supplements and it doesn’t cause loose stools which can happen when you take too much magnesium pills. You have a few options here:
Magnesium oil or spray
Foot or bath soak with epsom salts or magnesium flakes, ½ cup for 20-30 minutes
The best way to test for minerals is the Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis (HTMA) test. This test will tell you whether you're deficient or losing magnesium, and it shows the levels of other minerals that you need to absorb it. (Blood tests are unreliable because only 1% of the body’s magnesium is concentrated in the blood.)
The best way to find out your magnesium and mineral levels is the Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis test. I have all of my clients take this test because magnesium and mineral balance are so crucial for sleep.
If you’re tired of guessing which supplements will help you sleep and you’re interested in lab testing to find out for sure what will help, feel free to book a call with me. I’ll ask you about your sleep and your health and how you want to be sleeping 6 months from now. I’ll explain how I’ll find out exactly what’s going on in your body that’s causing your insomnia and fix it so you can sleep well.
*Disclaimer: I am not a doctor and this is not medical advice. Talk to your doctor or health practitioner before starting new supplements of any kind.
The only way to solve your sleep problem is to figure out what’s causing it.
If you aren’t sleeping, there’s a reason why.
The reasons could be in your mind:
negative thoughts about sleep
The reasons could also be in your body:
an unhealthy gut
liver detox issues
If you’ve tried all the things (supplements, essential oils, the chiliPAD, blue light blocking glasses) and they haven’t helped, there’s definitely something going on in your body that’s keeping you from sleeping like you should.
The only way to find out is through functional lab testing. The tests I give my clients show the big picture of what’s happening in your body. Instead of testing for one thing, I look for everything that is causing your insomnia. And I interpret the tests differently-I look for optimal ranges instead of the lab’s reference range that’s based on a bunch of sick people.
Then I use your test results along with your health history and unique symptoms to give you a simple, personalized action plan to restore your sleep in just a few months.
I also uncover what’s going on in your mind that’s sabotaging your sleep and work with you to fix it.
I help my clients get over their insomnia for good by finding the root causes and correcting them all at once.
My client BJ came to me after years of struggling to fall asleep and stay asleep. He was alternating between Trazadone, Xanax and Advil PM every night. His test results showed he had a parasite, low testosterone and sensitivities to dairy and eggs. He started following my recommendations in mid-December. By the beginning of February, he had gotten off the sleep meds and was sleeping great naturally. If we woke up in the middle of the night, he would fall back asleep quickly. This is what is possible in a month and a half!
If you want these same results, book a free call with me to find out how.