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Magnesium for athletes – the mineral you need

May 19, 2020 2 min read

Magnesium for athletes – the mineral you need

Why do athletes need magnesium?

Magnesium is an important electrolyte and is essential for athletes. It is critical for nerve and muscle function and is essential for maintaining bone health. Magnesium also acts in all the soft tissues cells and enzyme systems. It is involved in blood pressure, immunity, energy and insulin metabolism. Ensuring sufficient magnesium helps with optimal recovery, oxygen uptake and energy production. A magnesium deficiency may result in muscle spasms, nerve twitches, cramping and fatigue.

How can I get enough magnesium?

Magnesium is readily available in both plant and animal foods. However, in the last Australian health survey about one in three Australians do not meet their magnesium requirements. Magnesium rich foods include green leafy vegetables (e.g., spinach, broccoli and kale), nuts, seeds, lentils and whole grains. Caffeinated and carbonated drinks, diuretics and alcohol can leach magnesium from your system.

Do athletes need more magnesium?

Runners and athletes may have higher magnesium needs than the average person because of sweat losses. Also they put more stress on their bones and muscles. If you’re having a tougher time than usual recovering from hard workouts, or you’re experiencing muscle spasms or shin splints, you may be deficient in magnesium. Even a marginal deficiency in magnesium may impair performance and amplify the effects of oxidative stress on the body.

A blood test cannot indicate magnesium deficiency. This is because only one per cent of magnesium in the body is circulating in the blood. The rest is in the bones and muscles. So you’ll need to review your diet to figure out whether you are deficient.

How to supplement magnesium

VPA magnagel contains added magnesium to promote energy and recovery. Magnegel assists with maintaining adequate mineral concentrations during exercise to promote optimal performance. After exercise, Magnegel provides nutrients that positively affect energy production and recovery.

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Rachel Eagleton

Rachel Eagleton (MHumNut) is a university qualified Clinical Nutritionist based in Sydney, Australia. She is a busy working mum of two teenagers, so is practical and realistic with her advice. Rachel offers private consultations to improve your sporting performance, or your general health and well-being.

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