Magnesium found to dramatically enhance exercise performance

Magnesium is needed by the body to keep the muscular system at optimum performance and also for the conversion of fats, sugars, and other ingested substances into something that it can use for energy. It also helps in the facilitation of other enzymatic factors such as cell growth, glycolysis, and protein synthesis.

A recent study published in Nutrients on Monday, August 28 showed that the body’s need for magnesium increased as individuals’ physical activity went up, leading scientists to believe that magnesium has an impact on the body’s ability to perform exercise and other strenuous routines.

According to the study, there is cause to believe that magnesium improves exercise performance via boosting glucose availability in the brain, muscles, and blood, and reducing/inhibiting lactate accumulation in the muscles. Physical manifestations of that include ankle extension strength, maximal isometric trunk flexion, grip strength, knee extension torque, lower-leg power, and rotation and jumping performance.

At the same time, magnesium improves glucose levels in both the nervous system and the peripheral system (which consists of the nerves and the ganglia outside of the brain and the spinal cord) during exercise.

Magnesium was even found to improve gait speed and chair stand time in elderly women. (Related: Magnesium is Vital for Good Health.)

There is reason to believe that the presence of magnesium in the body is a positive factor when it comes to increasing a person’s ability to exercise. The researchers explain that since glucose is the body’s primary source of energy, the need for glucose will heighten during exercise.

Magnesium aids in initiating glycolysis, which then makes it possible for the transport of glucose from the liver or kidney to the muscle for a constant energy supply. During aerobic exercise (also called “cardio,” which needs pumping of oxygenated blood by the heart to deliver oxygen to working muscles), glucose is converted to pyruvate. During anaerobic exercise (short-duration, high-intensity exercise that usually lasts from two seconds to two minutes), glucose is reduced to lactate.

Lactate accumulation can result in muscle fatigue; this indicates that aerobic exercises are more ideal to the human body than anaerobic exercises.

Furthermore, the researchers noted that since exercise regulates magnesium distribution in the body and magnesium is a nutrient that is key to giving the body the ability to participate in strength activities and cardiorespiratory functions, there is a relation between exercise and magnesium in a human body.

Magnesium can be obtained by eating fruits, nuts, seeds, vegetables, and whole grains.The recommended dietary intake for magnesium is 400 milligrams to 480 mg for men and 310 mg to 320 mg for women above 19 years of age.

Water dehydration as bad as magnesium deficiency

A 10 percent weight loss from water dehydration is enough to make one disoriented and vulnerable to the possibility of a heat stroke, which is akin to the effects of magnesium deficiency, said registered dietitian and University of Georgia Cooperative Extension agent Alexis Roberts.

The body has the ability to store large amounts of water, but water also escapes the body throughout the day due to seemingly mundane processes such as breathing, sweating, and urinating. Also, strenuous exercise and extreme heat can cause the body’s water requirements to flare up.

When it comes to hydration, for most Americans, the solution is to drink water. It’s all natural, has zero calories, and is sugar-free. Plain, cold water is the best choice for hydrating your body and it’s the most pocket-friendly method, too. Drinking water is the fastest, easiest way to meet your basic and physical activity hydration needs,” Roberts said.

The amount of water that aperson should drink each day depends on his or her weight, according to the Mayo Clinic. One should divide his or her weight in pounds by half – this represents the ounces of water that he or she needs every day. For instance, if someone weighs 40 pounds, he or she should be drinking 20 ounces of water daily.

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