Magnesium is a mineral that is essential for the body’s function. Still, the body does not make it, so it is available in food like beans, seeds, and vegetables, and as a supplement for those who can’t get it adequately from their diet.
Magnesium helps build strong bones, regulate blood pressure, blood sugar and muscle contraction, keep the heart rhythm steady, and control nerve function and DNA synthesis. A deficiency can lead to several health conditions like diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers. So, aside from diet, taking magnesium supplements is also an efficient way to get adequate magnesium.
Most people get all the magnesium they need from their diet and do not need supplements. Still, if needed, especially in cases of magnesium deficiency, the recommended dosage is 65 mg per day for children between the ages of 1 to 3 years and 110 mg for children ages 4 to 8.
For adults and children who are above 9 years, the recommended dosage is 350 mg per day.
It is assumed that while taking this supplement, people will still be getting magnesium from the foods they eat, so the dosage is in addition to what they will get naturally from their diet.
Side Effects of Magnesium
When taken in appropriate doses, the magnesium supplement does not have side effects for most people. However, high doses of magnesium can lead to some gastrointestinal side effects, such as nausea, diarrhoea, and cramps or stomach pain.
If you experience these side effects after taking a magnesium supplement, then cutting back on the dose or changing the form of magnesium may help. This is because certain forms of magnesium, including magnesium chloride and magnesium oxide, are more likely to cause side effects.
If you have diabetes, kidney disease, heart disease, or intestinal disease, consult a healthcare provider before taking magnesium supplements. If you are pregnant or breastfeeding and have not been diagnosed with magnesium deficiency, then confirm with your doctor whether you need to take magnesium supplements; do not start taking them without a doctor’s recommendation.
Magnesium supplements may interact with certain medications, including diuretics, antibiotics and heart medicine, so before taking it, let your doctor know about the other medications you are taking.