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Headaches & Magnesium Deficiency

by
author image Michelle Lawson
Michelle Lawson began her professional writing career in 2010, with her work appearing on various websites. She emphasizes alternative approaches to health-related issues. She is certified as a Sports Nutritionist by the International Fitness Association. Lawson graduated from ATI College of Health with honors, earning her associate degree in medical assisting.
Headaches & Magnesium Deficiency
Magnesium deficiencies may lead to mild or severe headaches. Photo Credit headache image by forca from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

Magnesium is essential for many body functions. Magnesium deficiencies may lead to many chronic disorders. According to Connective Tissue Disorder Site, migraines, fibromyalgia, asthma and allergies have all been linked to magnesium deficiencies. Magnesium deficiency may be replenished by eating a healthy diet.

Function

Magnesium is essential to the activation of enzymes, energy production and regulation of mineral levels. It is also vital to every organ in the body for proper functioning. Magnesium helps in keeping a steady heart rate, maintaining strong bones and plays a role in protein synthesis, metabolic process, blood pressure, peripheral blood flow, neuromuscular transmission and converting blood sugar into energy.

Causes

A lack of magnesium may lead to headaches due to the dilation of blood vessels. According to the USDA, a person's magnesium status is associated with the intensity and frequency of migraine headaches, heart conditions and high blood pressure. They also state that nearly half of the people suffering from migraine headaches show to have a low amount of ionized magnesium in their blood.

Symptoms

Symptoms of headaches may include sensitivity to light and noise, visual impairment and irritability. In addition, you may experience severe throbbing in the temple area or behind the eyes. Nausea and vomiting as well as confusion and hearing impairment may accompany the more severe headaches.

Assessment

If you are experiencing frequent headaches, consult with your physician. She will run blood tests to check your magnesium levels and determine the type of treatment needed.

Treatments

The type of treatment needed for the headaches caused by magnesium deficiency depends on the level of magnesium in your blood. Mild magnesium deficiency and headaches may be treated by increasing the magnesium in your diet. Green vegetables, nuts, seeds, whole grain bread and some beans are good sources of magnesium. More severe deficiencies may have to be treated with an IV drip. Magnesium supplements are also available in the form of magnesium malate. According to the Office of Dietary Supplements, the recommended daily magnesium intake varies on age and gender.

Warnings

If you find that you are still experiencing severe headaches or migraine headaches after you changed your diet or started a supplement regimen, consult your physician immediately as they may indicate more severe underlying health conditions.

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