HuffPost: Magnesium Has Definite Uses, But Isn’t the Cure-All Social Media Says
HuffPost recently interviewed Cedars-Sinai clinical pharmacist Jesse Wisniewski, PharmD, about the increasing popularity of magnesium and whether it lives up to the recent hype circulating on social media.
Magnesium is a nutrient that is key to nerve, muscle, heart and bone health, Wisniewski told HuffPost. “Magnesium is a mineral element, so it’s an essential part of helping our body function normally,” he said.
Wisniewski told HuffPost that magnesium can be consumed through food, but roughly two-thirds of people who follow a Western diet are not getting enough of the nutrient. Though social media influencers and some doctors rave about the benefits of supplementation, the data regarding magnesium’s effect on sleep, depression and stress is mixed.
“With supplements, in general, there’s not a lot of requirements out there for good hard research,” Wisniewski told HuffPost. “The studies that have been done, there are usually a lot of flaws in those studies, so it’s unclear how to apply it to certain groups of patients.”
Wisniewski said short-term studies suggest magnesium can help people fall asleep faster, but the evidence is limited and doesn’t account for any effects or long-term risks. Research has indicated that taking magnesium and vitamin B6 together can help with mental health and stress levels, however, additional studies are needed.
Individuals should consult a healthcare provider before taking any magnesium supplements because this can interfere with certain antibiotics and medications used to manage chronic conditions, including thyroid disorders and HIV, Wisniewski said.
“Ultimately, it’s always a good idea to let your doctor know what supplements you’re taking,” Wisniewski told HuffPost. It’s also possible to consult your pharmacist, he added.
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