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Magnesium Deficiency and Anger

author image Erin Beck
Erin Beck began writing professionally in 2008 as an opinion columnist for the West Virginia University student newspaper, "The Daily Athenaeum." She has worked in health promotion at the university and as a communications intern at the National Alliance on Mental Illness. She has a Bachelor of Science in journalism and a Master of Public Health, both from West Virginia University.
Magnesium Deficiency and Anger
Cashews are a good source of magnesium.

Some people think magnesium deficiency is related to anger, but no study has supported this claim. Magnesium deficiency may be related to decreased aggression. Magnesium is related to mental health. Many American don't get enough magnesium, according to the National Institutes of Health, although developing symptoms of deficiency is rare.

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The National Institutes of Health reports that magnesium is important to normal muscle and nerve function, heart rhythm, immune response, bone health, energy metabolism and protein synthesis. It also helps regulate blood sugar and ensure normal blood pressure. Researchers are investigating magnesium's role in preventing and managing health conditions such as hypertension, cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

Mental Health

Magnesium deficiency results in increases in anxiety-related behavior in mice, according to a 2004 study published by Nicolas Singewald and colleagues in Neuropharmacology. Supplementation with carnitine, zinc and magnesium can improve attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder symptoms, according to a 2008 study published by Luke T. Curtis and colleagues in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine. Magnesium depletion can lead to depressive behavior in mice, according to a 2004 study published by Nicolas Singewald and colleagues in Neuropharmacology.


Magnesium deficiency may reduce offensive aggression in mice, according to a 2002 study published by Sari E. Izenwasser and colleagues in Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior. Excessive amounts can increase aggression. The researchers suggested that the effect was because magnesium is linked to the neurotransmitters dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin.


The health of the digestive system and kidneys and gastrointestinal disorders such as Chrohn's disease can affect digestion of magnesium. Chronic vomiting or diarrhea can also cause deficiency. People who may need extra magnesium include older adults and those with alcoholism, poorly controlled diabetes, chronic malabsorptive problems or chronically low blood levels of potassium and calcium. Those who take certain medications, including some diuretics, antibiotics and medications used to treat cancer, may also need more magnesium. Early symptoms of magnesium deficiency include loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, fatigue and weakness.


Get magnesium from beans, peas, nuts, seeds and whole grains. Men ages 19 to 30 should get 400 mg of magnesium per day. Men over age 30 should get 420 mg. Women ages 19 to 30 should get 310 mg of magnesium each day. Women over age 30 should get 320 mg. The upper limit for magnesium from supplements is 350 mg per day.

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