Magnesium & Mood Disorders

Mood disorders have many possible causes, like stress, genetics, and environmental factors. But another possibility that few people consider is the level of magnesium in your body and how it can affect vital physical and mental functions. Knowing your magnesium levels may help a medical professional treat your problem.

What Is Magnesium?

Magnesium, a plentiful mineral in the body, is organically present in numerous foods, added to different food products, used as a dietary supplement, and an ingredient in some medicines. It helps control many biological functions in your body, including protein synthesis, muscle and nerve function, blood glucose control, and blood pressure regulation. According to a U.S. National Institutes of Health study, low magnesium levels may contribute to anxiety, mood disorders, and other mental health issues.

What Are Mood Disorders?

A mood disorder can be described as a mental health issue primarily affecting a person’s emotional wellbeing. It’s a disorder in which someone experiences long episodes of intense happiness, extreme sadness, or both. The most common mood disorders include:

  • Depression and its numerous sub-categories like postpartum depression, bipolar depression, and seasonal affective disorder.
  • Bipolar disorder I and II.
  • And certain other mood disorders.

Many symptoms can be treated with psychotherapy, self-help, antidepressants, or ketamine therapy.

What Causes Mood Disorders?

Like other mental health conditions, there is no single cause for mood disorders. “Many factors contribute to mood disorders. An imbalance of brain chemicals likely causes them. Life events (such as stressful life changes) may also contribute to a depressed mood. Mood disorders also tend to run in families.” Your risk of getting a mood disorder may increase if a biological relative has it or if you’re subjected to stressful situations or environments.

Common Symptoms

  • Continual sadness
  • Low energy
  • Feeling hopeless or worthless 
  • Lack of appetite or overindulging
  • Weight or weight loss
  • Lack of interest in something you enjoyed doing
  • Sleep problems or insomnia
  • Repeated thoughts about suicide or death 
  • Problems concentrating
  • High energy, elation
  • Fast-talking or movement
  • Agitation, impatience, irritability
  • You engage in risky behaviors
  • Abnormal boost inactivity or attempting to perform too many tasks simultaneously.
  • Speedy thoughts
  • Feeling skittish or on edge for no viable reason

Magnesium & Mood Disorders

Magnesium deficiency occurs when the quantity of magnesium in your blood is lower than average. It can lead to numerous physical and mental health problems, including developing mood disorders.

According to one review in 2017, more than a dozen studies presented evidence that higher magnesium levels helped lower anxiety

How do magnesium levels decrease?

  • Alcohol use
  • Burns over a large area of the body
  • Chronic or long-term diarrhea
  • Extreme urination, such as during uncontrolled diabetes and when recovering from acute kidney failure
  • Hyperaldosteronism or a disorder where the adrenal gland distributes “too much of the hormone aldosterone into the blood.”
  • You have kidney tubule disorders.
  • Malabsorption syndromes, like celiac disease and inflammatory bowel disease.
  • Malnutrition.
  • Medicines include amphotericin, cisplatin, cyclosporine, antibodies targeting the epidermal growth factor receptor, proton pump inhibitors, diuretics, tacrolimus, and aminoglycoside antibiotics.
  • You suffer from pancreatitis or inflammation and swelling of the pancreas.
  • Extreme sweating.

How to boost magnesium levels?

Your medical professional will tell you that you need 400 to 420 mg of magnesium per day if you’re a man and 310 to 320 mg a day if you’re a woman. But where does it come from? The fastest way to get more magnesium in your body is by eating the right foods – including pumpkin seeds, almonds, spinach, cashews, peanuts, cereals, soymilk, black beans, dark chocolate, peanut butter, whole wheat bread, avocados, baked potatoes, brown rice, plain low-fat yogurt, oatmeal, kidney beans, salmon, halibut, chicken breast, ground beef, broccoli, white rice, apples, and carrots.

Diagnosis & Treatment

If you experience symptoms of mood disorders for several months or longer and your quality of life has suffered, see a medical professional for diagnosis and treatment. Diagnosis may involve:

  • A physical examination to see if there’s an underlying medical cause for your symptoms.
  • A psychiatric assessment of your thoughts, emotions, and behaviors as a trigger for your symptoms and whether you or someone in your family has a history of mental illness. In this case, symptoms will be compared to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders criteria.

Treatment may involve psychotherapy or options like ketamine therapy.

Final Thoughts

Mood disorders affect millions of people in the United States and can result in serious physical and mental health problems if ignored. If you have symptoms and can’t treat them yourself, see a medical professional for diagnosis and learn about available treatment options. You may receive a ketamine recommendation.

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