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by Kunal K April 29, 2024 2 min read

Chronic stress, busy schedules, and excessive screen time before bed, millions of Australians struggle to get quality shut-eye. However, research continues to support the idea of a simple solution: getting enough of the essential mineral magnesium.

Insomnia, restlessness or night craps getting in the way of your sleep? These are signs of a magnesium deficiency.

Magnesium may also be the key to unlocking deep, restorative sleep.

A 2010 study published in the Journal of Research in Medical Sciences found that magnesium supplementation in adults with poor sleep quality improved overall sleep scores and reduced inflammatory markers like C-reactive protein. Inflammation can contribute to sleep issues, so by tamping down on this fire, magnesium may help promote better slumber.

"Magnesium is like a natural sleep aid and anti-inflammatory," explains Dr. Francine Taylor, a sleep specialist at Stanford University. "It has this dual benefit of calming the nervous system and minimizing factors that can disturb sleep."

Further evidence comes from the landmark CARDIA study, which tracked over 5,000 adults for decades. The researchers found a clear link between higher magnesium intake and better sleep quality, with those getting more of the mineral less likely to suffer from shortened sleep durations (Zhang et al., 2021).

Double-blind, placebo-controlled trials lend even stronger weight to magnesium's effects on sleep. In one study on elderly adults published in the Journal of Research in Medical Sciences, supplementation increased sleep efficiency, total sleep time, and reduced the time it took to fall asleep compared to placebo (Abbasi et al., 2012).

Magnesium helps activate the parasympathetic nervous system, which controls the body's rest and digest responses. It also regulates the synthesis of melatonin, the sleep hormone, and binds to GABA receptors in the brain, promoting relaxation.

"Magnesium has a wonderfully calming effect, almost like nature's tranquilizer for the mind and body," says Dr. Taylor. "But unlike sleeping pills, it's gentle and side effect-free when taken at recommended doses."

Despite these benefits, it's estimated that nearly half of Australians don't get enough magnesium from diet alone. Deficiency can result in muscle cramps, fatigue, poor sleep, and increased inflammation. Good sources include leafy greens, nuts, seeds, beans, and whole grains, but supplements may be beneficial for those struggling to meet needs through foods.

So if you find yourself staring at the ceiling most nights, unable to quiet your mind or sink into deep slumber, boosting your magnesium could be just what the sleep doctor ordered. Whether through magnesium-rich meals or quality supplements, this mineral may be your new solution for battling insomnia and scoring higher quality sleep.


Get 7 Types of Magnesium in 1 Supplement


Kunal K
Kunal K

Co-Founder, OptimOZ.com.au

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