Muscle: Magnesium Builds Muscle Mass

Magnesium is necessary in the body for muscle contractions when training. It is also needed for protein synthesis to rebuild tissue, and to lower inflammation. It is an extremely valuable nutrient for those interested in building bigger muscles.

Calcium competes with magnesium for absorption, as a result they need to be in a ratio of about 2 to 1 for optimal metabolism and health. Low magnesium triggers a pro-inflammatory state because excess calcium activates inflammation in the same manner that the body would respond to injury by becoming inflamed. Researchers think this is a primary contributor to the huge jump in type II diabetes, and obesity, as calcium intake has risen and magnesium intake has dropped over the past few decades which imbalances the ratio necessary for good health.

A magnesium deficiency also means the body can’t build muscle and restore tissue because it enables enzyme function in the body. We know that magnesium must be present for the muscles to contract, a lack of it will lower your work capacity and maximal strength. Data show that by increasing your magnesium intake you can gain more strength. One study found that a group of men who took four milligrams per pound of body weight per day, in conjunction with strength training three times a week, put on more muscle and gained more squat and bench press strength than a group that took a placebo.

Only one percent of magnesium in the body is in the blood, making it very difficult to identify a deficiency since blood tests are the method we use to measure nutrients. The other 99 percent is in the intracellular space in muscle or bone. To effectively measure magnesium levels, you need to test the content in the red blood cells. Low Magnesium is also associated with heart disease risk, sudden cardiac death, bone loss and osteoporosis. It enables vitamin-D to function in the body, meaning low magnesium will directly affect your vitamin-D levels.

Magnesium has a relaxing effect on the central nervous system, which can help lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol that causes visceral fat gain when the hormone levels are high. Getting adequate magnesium is a method to treat high blood pressure naturally. A large-scale review showed that magnesium supplementation as high as 486 milligrams per day will significantly lower blood pressure in hypertensive patients, and it is more effective than blood pressure medications.

Opt for a magnesium that is bound to glycinate, ororate, taurate, threonate, or fuminate for the best absorption from a supplement.

Happy Lifting!

This article written and researched by Matt Taylor

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2 comments for “Muscle: Magnesium Builds Muscle Mass

  1. September 19, 2012 at 6:13 pm

    See! More supplements! LOL I’m not trying to take 2 dozen pills. :)

    • Lifestyle and Strength
      September 19, 2012 at 6:43 pm

      Carnitine is more of an optional supplement. There are advantages to taking it, but it’s not necessary. It’s more in line with creatine, or forskolin. You don’t need it, but there is a plus side to it. Like I responded to your zinc comment, I don’t take a pile of supplements either, but I will add some in from time to time. Carnitine is a worthy consideration if you are trying to increase size, or lose fat.

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