Let’s talk about a miracle mineral that can help reduce and stop sciatica and nerve pain. This mineral is none other than magnesium, specifically, one particular form of magnesium.
Now, you may be wondering, “Why magnesium?”
The answer lies in the multifaceted roles that this essential mineral plays within your body. Magnesium, often overlooked, is a powerhouse when it comes to maintaining and enhancing your neurological health.
From a neurological perspective, magnesium is a key player in nerve transmission, the process by which signals or ‘messages’ are sent throughout your nervous system. It aids in the conduction of neuromuscular activities, ensuring that your muscles respond correctly to nerve stimulation.
This function is particularly important when we consider nerve degenerative conditions, like sciatica and diabetic neuropathy, where nerve signal transmission is often compromised.
But the role of magnesium doesn’t stop at nerve transmission and neuromuscular conduction. It also serves a protective function, guarding our neurons–the building blocks of our nervous system–against excessive excitation.
This overstimulation can lead to neuronal cell death, a process that can contribute to a multitude of neurological disorders, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
So, by regulating the excitability of our neurons, magnesium helps to maintain the health and functionality of our nervous system.
Now, the benefits of magnesium in neurological health are not just theoretical.
They are backed by scientific research that has shown the significant impact of magnesium supplements on the recovery of various neurological disorders, including sciatica.
A 2018 study published on PubMed provides compelling evidence of the role of magnesium in nerve health. The researchers found that magnesium supplementation promoted the regeneration of the sciatic nerve in subjects and it also down-regulated the inflammatory response.
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Next, let’s understand what’s going on with sciatic nerve pain.
Sciatica is a specific type of nerve pain that is characterized by discomfort radiating along the path of the sciatic nerve.
This nerve is the longest in the human body, originating from the lower back, branching through the hips and buttocks and extending down each leg. When you experience sciatica, the pain typically affects only one side of your body.
The pain associated with sciatica can range from mild to severe and can be quite debilitating. It often feels like a sharp or burning sensation or like electric shocks. It can be accompanied by numbness, tingling, or muscle weakness in the affected leg or foot. These symptoms can be triggered by simple movements like coughing or sneezing and prolonged sitting can worsen the discomfort.
The root cause of sciatica is often a herniated disk, bone spur on the spine, or narrowing of the spine, also known as spinal stenosis. These conditions can compress part of the nerve, leading to inflammation, pain and often some numbness in the affected leg. In rare cases, it can also be caused by conditions such as tumors or damage due to diseases like diabetes.
Now, let’s take a closer look at the mechanism through which magnesium helps to alleviate sciatic nerve pain.
Magnesium acts as a natural muscle relaxant to reduce muscle tension and inflammation. Inflammation is a common response to nerve damage and can exacerbate pain and further impede nerve function. By reducing inflammation, magnesium not only aids in nerve recovery but also helps to alleviate some of the painful symptoms associated with sciatica.
Moreover, magnesium aids in the proper functioning of nerves by acting as a gatekeeper for NMDA receptors which are involved in nerve signal transmission. By blocking these receptors, magnesium can prevent excessive calcium influx that can lead to nerve cell death, a process known as excitotoxicity.
Taking magnesium helps prevent the worsening of nerve conditions, and facilitates nerve regeneration by repairing both the nerve endings and the protective myelin sheath that surrounds them.
Next, let’s look at the function of magnesium in your body– other than regulating nerve signals and muscle contractions and reducing inflammation and pain.
Every cell in your body contains this mineral and needs it to function. About 60% of the magnesium in your body is found in bone, while the rest is distributed in muscles, soft tissues, and fluids, including blood.
This crucial mineral is involved in more than 300 enzymatic reactions in your body. It helps maintain a steady heart rhythm, blood pressure and insulin levels and is vital for energy creation, protein formation, DNA repair and cell renewal.
Multiple studies have demonstrated the beneficial effects of magnesium in reducing anxiety, panic attacks, heart palpitations, and the pain associated with diabetic neuropathy, fibromyalgia and sciatica.
The problem is, up to 70% of adults are deficient in magnesium.
One of the primary causes is inadequate dietary intake. Many people simply do not consume enough magnesium-rich foods regularly. Magnesium-rich foods include dark chocolate, pumpkin seeds, cashew nuts, avocados, spinach, salmon, oats and beans.
Other causes that interfere with the absorption and retention of magnesium in the body, are medications such as antacids, acid-blockers, and diuretics; diseases such as Crohn’s disease, celiac disease, and type 2 diabetes; and drinking too much alcohol.
But the most important reason is depleted soil nutrients; this results in less magnesium in our food. This means that even with a diet high in magnesium-rich foods, you may still not be getting enough of this crucial mineral. This is especially true if you’re dealing with conditions like sciatica and nerve pain; the solution is to supplement with magnesium.
So, which form of magnesium should you choose to relieve sciatica and nerve pain?
Magnesium supplements come with different rates of bioavailability—that is, how much of the magnesium can be absorbed into your bloodstream and used by your body.
The type of magnesium supplement we recommend is magnesium glycinate. This chelated form of magnesium is the most bioavailable. It’s typically used to correct long-term deficiencies.
It’s especially good for people with nerve pain like sciatica, diabetes neuropathy and multiple sclerosis. As well as for people looking for help with sleep, anxiety and other neurological issues, such as depression.
Furthermore, magnesium glycinate has been studied for its ability to promote bone health, manage blood sugar, maintain normal heart rhythms, reduce symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS), amplify exercise performance, improve fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome, and reduce the risk of stroke and heart failure.
Also, it is less likely to cause diarrhea—a common side effect of magnesium supplementation—and is more gentle on the stomach. To see our recommended magnesium glycinate, click the link below.
Next, it’s important to get the dosage right.
The recommended dietary allowance for magnesium varies depending on age and gender, but for adults, it generally ranges from 310 to 420 mg per day. If you’re dealing with sciatica or nerve pain, your healthcare provider may recommend a higher dosage.
A useful guideline for determining the appropriate magnesium dosage is to see how much your body can tolerate without experiencing any gastrointestinal discomfort, such as stomach cramps or diarrhea.
As always, this video is educational and does not constitute medical advice. Always consult with a healthcare provider about any changes to your health regimen.
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