Research indicates that people whose health is affected by Lyme Disease may have low levels of magnesium. Magnesium is essential to healthy bone structure and the transmission of nerve impulses and muscle contractions. Additionally, magnesium is necessary for hundreds of other biochemical interactions that influence mental and physical health.
In the body, magnesium is responsible for over 250 enzymatic reactions. It plays a role in processes such as:
- Reducing muscle cramping and tension
- Maintaining electrolyte balance, influencing electrolyte levels through the body and influencing heart rhythm, muscle contraction, fluid balance and other processes
- Supporting consistent energy production
- Enhancing sleep quality, so that you feel rested upon waking
- Neutralizing stomach acid and supporting normal bowel movement
- Helping balance blood sugar levels
- Supporting the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis.
While more research is needed to understand low levels of magnesium noted in cases of Lyme Disease, it is a good idea to ask your provider to check your magnesium levels. Common symptoms of magnesium deficiency which may be present with Lyme Disease can include dizziness, headache, heart palpitations, muscle twitches, nervousness, fatigue, sleep disruption, gastrointestinal problems, and feelings of anxiety and depression, among others.
Food sources of magnesium include leafy vegetables, nuts, legumes, fish, fruits and whole grains. Because food levels of magnesium are affected by the quality of soil in which the food is grown, there have been huge declines in food-based magnesium content over the last few decades. Some people may be magnesium deficient and not realize that their symptoms of illness (e.g., headaches, muscle cramps, constipation) are related to insufficient magnesium.
There are different types of magnesium (e.g., citrate, glycinate) and various forms (pill, powder, liquid). The type of magnesium supplement that can best address your health concerns will depend on many factors. Also, taking too much magnesium can cause adverse reactions such as diarrhea, constipation, nausea, and vomiting. If you are concerned about magnesium deficiency due to chronic Lyme Disease, consult with a holistic practitioner about choosing a magnesium supplement.
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Nielsen, F. H. “Effects of Magnesium Depletion on Inflammation in Chronic Disease.” Current Opinion in Clinical Nutrition and Metabolic Care 17, no. 6 (November 2014): 525–30. https://doi.org/10.1097/MCO.0000000000000093
Uwitonze, Anne Marie, and Mohammed S Razzaque. “Role of Magnesium in Vitamin D Activation and Function.” The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association vol. 118,3 (2018): 181-189. doi:10.7556/jaoa.2018.037