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Magnesium has a chemical symbol of Mg and is a chemical element that has atomic number 12. Magnesium is abundant on earth and is essential to all living cells. It is an alkaline earth metal used mainly for making aluminum magnesium alloys. It is made up of a lightweight metal that has a thin layer of coating that protects it from oxidizing. It reacts with water, but slower than calcium does. It produces hydrogen bubbles and when mixed with hydrochloric acid, produces gas and heat. In early days, magnesium was used as a source of illumination with photographers as it produces a very bright white light when burned in air. It is still used today in such things as fireworks and marine flares.

In a nutritional sense, magnesium is used for many different purposes. Milk of magnesia is used for antacids. This is a water suspension of magnesium hydroxide, which is not soluble in water. Because it is so important to our health, it is necessary to have a regular intake of this mineral. Magnesium deficiency can lead to osteoporosis, anxiety problems, high blood pressure, diabetes and problems with cardiovascular diseases. Likewise, excess intake of magnesium is not recommended and can lead to things such as diarrhea and magnesium poisoning.

Magnesium salts are used for therapeutic reasons whereby it is used primarily to treat eclampsia hypertension. Natural food sources of magnesium include whole grains, seeds, nuts such as almonds and cashews, green vegetables like spinach, peanut butter, black-eyed peas and low fat milk. Although magnesium is present in many foods, it is highly unlikely to be able to get ones RDA from just one type so therefore it is extremely important to have a wide and healthy variety of foods including five servings of fruits and vegetables and many whole grains. Brown bread for example has twice as much magnesium as white bread as much of the magnesium is lost in the processing.

Mineral supplements are very common nowadays, especially because people are wanting to be not only more health conscious, but also are always looking for the quickest solution. It is therefore no surprise that mineral supplements have been proven to be very popular because they are cheap, easy to produce and take no time to ingest. They are available worldwide in places such as pharmacies and can also be bought at local supermarkets, especially in places like the United States and Great Britain.

It is important to take supplements as advised and it is recommended to take a certain amount of vitamins and minerals everyday to help our immune system stay working at 100%. It is also advised not to overdose on certain vitamins and minerals as they may cause serious side effects and affect certain bodily processes. Supplements are generally taken both for maintaining regular health but also to treat deficiencies so therefore they come in different strengths and dosages. There are a number of brands that sell mineral supplements so it is worth finding out which one is best for you. The cheapest option may not always be the best.

If you are unsure about taking supplements, contact your doctor or pharmacist. He or she can advise you on the best plan of action and give you more information about specific vitamins and minerals. It is advised to seek consultation especially if you are pregnant or currently taking any medication as this can affect the intake of supplements. Go to a registered pharmacy and make sure you read all the instructions on dosage and follow them strictly. More information can be found on the Internet.


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