Ranjan Sinha

April 23, 2024

"Got Magnesium? Your Genes Spill the Beans on Why You Need More!"


Magnesium is a vital mineral that plays a crucial role in over 300 enzyme reactions in the human body. It contributes to bone health, regulates muscle and nerve functions, and even helps to convert food into energy.

Despite its importance, magnesium deficiency is common, affecting various aspects of health. 

Symptoms of Magnesium Deficiency

Magnesium deficiency can be subtle and may not be evident until levels become critically low. However, certain symptoms can help identify potential deficiency:

  • Muscle Twitches and Cramps: Low magnesium levels can lead to involuntary muscle twitches and cramps, sometimes escalating to seizures in severe cases.
  • Mental Health Challenges: Deficiency may manifest as apathy, mental numbness, and increase the risk of anxiety and depression.
  • Osteoporosis: Magnesium is essential for bone health. Deficiency can lead to weakened bones and increase the risk of osteoporosis.
  • Fatigue and Weakness: Persistent fatigue and muscle weakness might indicate low magnesium levels.
  • High Blood Pressure: Studies suggest a link between low magnesium and high blood pressure, a risk factor for heart disease.
  • Asthma: Magnesium levels are often lower in people with asthma, and supplements may help manage symptoms.
  • Irregular Heartbeat: Severe magnesium deficiency can lead to arrhythmia, which can be life-threatening in extreme cases.

Dietary Sources of Magnesium

Ensuring adequate magnesium intake is crucial for maintaining health. Here are some excellent food sources of magnesium:

  • Green Leafy Vegetables (e.g., spinach, kale): One of the best sources of magnesium.
  • Nuts and Seeds (e.g., almonds, pumpkin seeds): Not only rich in magnesium but also provide protein and healthy fats.
  • Whole Grains (e.g., buckwheat, quinoa): Besides magnesium, these foods are good sources of fiber and other nutrients.
  • Legumes (e.g., black beans, lentils): High in magnesium and also provide substantial protein.
  • Tofu: Offers magnesium and a plant-based protein alternative.
  • Avocados: Packed with magnesium, healthy fats, and fibers.
  • Dark Chocolate: A tasty treat that provides a significant amount of magnesium per serving.

Magnesium levels in the body are not only influenced by diet and health conditions but also by genetics. Certain genetic variations, or SNPs (Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms), can affect how magnesium is absorbed, utilized, and retained in the body. Including information about these genetic markers in your Digbi Health report can provide personalized dietary recommendations. Here are key SNPs that impact magnesium metabolism:

  • TRPM6 (Transient Receptor Potential Melastatin 6): This gene is crucial for magnesium absorption in the kidney and intestines. Variations in this gene can affect magnesium levels and risk of deficiency.
  • SLC41A1 (Solute Carrier Family 41 Member 1): Influences magnesium transport across cell membranes. Certain SNPs in this gene may alter magnesium cellular uptake and overall homeostasis.
  • CNNM2 (Cyclin M2): Plays a role in transporting magnesium into cells. Genetic variations can impact magnesium balance and have implications for neurological and cardiovascular health.

These genetic insights not only deepen our understanding of magnesium management but also help tailor nutritional plans that better align with individual genetic profiles. By analyzing these SNPs, Digbi Health can guide members to optimize their magnesium intake based on their unique genetic makeup.

Personalized Magnesium Intake with Digbi Health

For Digbi Health members, it's important to note that individual genetic makeup can affect how magnesium is metabolized. Members can find their genetic tendency to metabolize magnesium in their genetic reports, which helps tailor dietary recommendations more accurately. Digbi's comprehensive approach incorporates genetic factors, insulin response, and gut health factors, providing a holistic view and personalized guidance on nutrition. Following the personalized Food Guidelines from Digbi will ensure that your diet is optimized not only for magnesium intake but also for overall metabolic health and well-being.

Recommended Daily Intake

The daily magnesium needs vary by age, gender, and physiological conditions:

  • Adult men: 400-420 mg
  • Adult women: 310-320 mg
  • During pregnancy: 350-360 mg
  • During lactation: 310-320 mg

Children and teens have lower requirements, adjusted according to their age group.

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