1. Muscle Cramps
Have you ever gotten a muscle cramp in your calf? Ouch! What about twitching that you can't control? Involuntary muscle spasms can happen because there is an imbalance of calcium (the muscle contractor) and magnesium (the muscle relaxer). When magnesium gets used up, the muscles contract and don't have the ability to stay relaxed.
Without enough magnesium the nervous system can become a little trigger happy. This edginess means that the body is sending out warning signals prematurely. If you've suddenly become more anxious having optimal magnesium levels will keep stress hormones in check, and lower anxiety. For longstanding anxiety concerns, there are likely a few more pieces to the puzzle.
3. Chocolate cravings
Most of us ignore our body's signals, but generally our bodies know what they need if we were to truly listen to its cues. If you find yourself craving chocolate specifically, not just sweets in general, it could be the body trying to communicate something. Dark chocolate can contain 25% of your daily needs for magnesium in just one square - no, this doesn't mean if you eat the whole chocolate bar you'll be doing yourself a favour ;)
Magnesium helps to relax your bowels. Just like the muscle spasm in your calf, not having enough magnesium will cause the intestinal muscle to contract as well. When your bowels are tight, waste cannot pass through as easily. Also, magnesium serves to pull water into the intestines, allowing stools to become softer and easier to move through the body.
5. Problems Sleeping
Trouble falling or staying asleep is extremely common for my patients. Lack of magnesium could be playing a role in improper nervous system function and lack of relaxation, two processes that could factor into insomnia.
6. Irregular Heartbeat
We often forget that the heart is made of muscle too. Just like the other muscles I've discussed, the heart can't function properly without enough magnesium. Improper contraction of the heart muscle will lead to an irregular heartbeat.
7. High Blood Pressure
You may be sensing a theme here, that magnesium is the body's relaxer, well the same holds true for blood vessels. Magnesium helps blood vessels to relax and dilate which leads to lower blood pressure. When arteries are constricted blood pressure goes up. Think of your garden hose: when the water is allowed to come out a large hole at the end it flows out gently, but if you cover part of the nozzle and make the exit point smaller and water sprays out with great force.