Anxiety can be caused by a number of factors: emotional, genetic, environmental, etc. While prescription drugs are often the first resort, it turns out a completely safe mineral is often more effective.
There is one calming mineral that some reports say 90% of the population is deficient in: magnesium.
While our ancestors had an abundance of magnesium from organ meats, seafood, swimming in the ocean, and rich soil, it isn’t uncommon to be depleted today. The modern diet is sufficiently lacking in magnesium and our soil is no longer as healthy as it once was. Stress is also a factor – not only does it worsen anxiety and depression symptoms, it rapidly depletes magnesium from the body. In a time when most people eat poorly, work long hours and stress is commonplace – it’s no wonder why most people are magnesium deficient. But could this also be the reason why so many people experience anxiety?
Magnesium plays a hugely important role in the body; it is required for cell growth and development, enables thousands of biochemical processes, contributes to the proper functioning of muscles and nerves, and releases appropriate amount of serotonin in the brain.
Magnesium naturally calms the muscular and nervous systems. This is why people often experience muscle cramps when they are magnesium deficient – it’s the same with anxiety. When a person experiences an anxiety attack, it is likely that they are magnesium deficient – and the stress of an anxiety attack will further deplete the body of this beneficial mineral.
Personally, my experience with magnesium has been great. I had severe panic attacks when I was in my late 20s, when I drastically changed my diet by eliminating processed foods, most grains and sugar, while introducing organ meats, healthy fats and fermented foods. After that my anxiety was more like a nagging annoyance. Since introducing magnesium supplements, I have been anxiety-free. I take regular magnesium baths and a magnesium supplement. I highly recommend both. I fall asleep faster without waking up throughout the night.
And I see it helping patients sleep better and have less anxiety SO OFTEN.
Are You Magnesium Deficient?
Unfortunately, magnesium tests are often inaccurate. The tests measure magnesium in the blood, while majority of magnesium found in the body does not reside in the blood. The best way to determine magnesium deficiency is to evaluate the symptoms:
- muscle cramps/spasms
- irregular heartbeat
- trouble falling asleep/staying asleep
- hormonal imbalances
Here is a great article from Psychology Today about magnesium and anxiety.
Know what else is great for treating anxiety? Acupuncture!
In fact, acupuncture is so great at treating anxiety, that I think of it as a positive side-effect of acupuncture treatment for everyone - meaning that even if someone comes with a primary complaint of back pain, for example, they are likely to get relief from their back pain AS WELL as experience less anxiety as a result of acupuncture treatment.