3 Benefits of Magnesium in Pregnancy and Postpartum
What is Magnesium?
Magnesium is a mineral your body needs to function properly. In fact, it is the fourth most abundant mineral in your body, and your body can’t work properly without it.
Magnesium is also essential for hundreds of metabolic processes and many other important bodily functions, from producing energy to building important proteins.
Many people don’t consume enough of this essential nutrient, which is why the may be decide to take a magnesium supplement.
Why take Magnesium In Pregnancy or Postpartum? Here are 3 Reasons why you can try increasing your magnesium intake in Pregnancy or Postpartum. Remember, you don't necessarily need to supplement, as Magnesium is also found in food sources, so you can eat yourself to good health, yum, count me in!
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It Can Improve your Mood
In pregnancy, magnesium (amongst other nutrients) are absorbed by the fetus and placenta, which can lead to magnesium deficiency in the mother. Lactation also depletes mother’s magnesium stores - these two factors could contribute to postpartum depression.*
Some studies link low levels of magnesium with depression, and this has led researchers to wonder whether supplementing with this mineral could help treat this condition.
A 6-week randomized controlled trial including participants with depression found that 500 mg of magnesium daily alleviated depressive and anxiety symptoms in as little as 2 weeks.
Another 6-week study among 126 people with mild or moderate depression observed that those who took 248 mg per day of magnesium alongside their normal treatment reported a significant improvement in depression symptoms
Magnesium Aids in Relaxation and Sleep
In order to fall asleep and stay asleep, your body and brain need to relax. Which can be a very hard thing to do when your sleep patterns are disturbed with your child or children, or if you find your just not able to "switch off".
Magnesium helps the body activate the parasympathetic nervous system, the system responsible for getting you calm and relaxed.
Magnesium can help with Constipation
About 16 - 39% of people experience constipation during their pregnancy.* Most commonly in the third trimester, when the fetus is heaviest and putting the most pressure on your bowel, although, constipation can happen in all three trimesters.
New Mums may also suffer from constipation, as they may be dehydrated, not consuming enough water, or not balancing out the nutrients lost through breastfeeding.
Thankfully, Magnesium has been proven to help with constipation, as it helps to increase the amount of water in the intestines, which can help with bowel movements.*
If you have tried increasing your water intake and fiber, it may be worth while to consider a magnesium supplement, or consuming magnesium rich foods. Magnesium is mostly found in plant sources such as dark leafy green vegetables, legumes, nuts and seeds and whole grains.