April 6, 2017
Magnesium is the original chill pill. Before there were anti-anxiety medications, over-the-counter sleep aids and well, valium, there was this simple nutrient that we got plenty of from our diets. Our ancestors loaded up on this essential mineral without much effort, but by current estimates, we’re supposed to get around 320-420 mg every day. The average Jane and Joe gets around half the recommended amount of magnesium.
- Muscle Cramps
- Various Psychosis, and
- INSOMNIA – one of the culprits in a number of diseases including depression, heart disease, diabetes, chronic inflammation, hypertension, and even a shortened life expectancy.
Magnesium is Simply Magnificent
Magnesium is a co-factor for more than 300 different enzymes our bodies need to regulate diverse biochemical reactions in the body, including protein synthesis, muscle and nerve function, blood glucose control, and blood pressure regulation, as well as the synthesis of DNA, RNA, and the antioxidant glutathione along with regulating our sleep cycles.
Green leafy vegetables, such as spinach, legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grains, are good sources of magnesium, but much of the mineral has been depleted from our soils, and thus our foods, by industrial farming practices.
Furthermore, only about 30-40% of the magnesium we consume in our food is absorbed by the body.
In order to get sufficient magnesium, and hence, significantly good sleep, we need to get more magnesium into our bodies.
Poor sleep, low energy, and anxiousness are all signs that you are magnesium deficient.
DIY Magnesium Lotion
An easy solution if you don’t want to worry about taking a powdered supplement or getting magnesium from your food is to make your own magnesium balm or lotion. Here’s how:
What You’ll Need:
- Highly Concentrated Magnesium Chloride Flakes
- Unrefined Virgin Coconut Oil (It should remain solid at room temperature.)
- Beeswax Pellets
- Unrefined Shea Butter
- Boiling Water
- Quart-sized Mason Jars (to store your magnesium balm)
- A Measuring Cup
- Mixing Bowls
- Essential Oils to Scent the Balm/Lotion if Desired
All of these ingredients are available online, at places like Amazon or Swanson’s or at most health food stores.
Though you can find ready-made magnesium “butters” online, they can be pricey, and you can’t always be sure what is in them. By making your own stash, you can use it as frequently as you like, and be aware of exactly what is in it. You can also revel in the knowledge that the overall cost is much less when you do-it-yourself, especially over time, if this ends up being your go-to get-to-sleep remedy. And it should be, since magnesium is a nutrient you desperately need anyhow.
Essential oils like lavender, chamomile, or calendula can also help since they have their own calming qualities, but they aren’t strictly needed to make your magnesium lotion effective.
The following recipe will make approximately 8 ounces which will store for up to two months at room temperature.
- Measure approximately half a cup of magnesium flakes into a bowl. Fill another bowl with about half a cup of water that has been microwaved on high until it is boiling, abut 2-3 minutes. You can also bring your water to boil on a stove.
- Measure 3 Tbsp of boiling water into the bowl with the magnesium flakes. Stir until the flakes are dissolved and set this aside.
- In the quart mason jar, measure equal parts of coconut oil, beeswax and shea butter. Place the jar in a small pan filled with 1 inch of water, making a double boiler. Place the jar/pan on the stove and turn the heat to medium high.
- Allow the coconut oil, beeswax pellets and shea butter to melt, swirling the jar occasionally if necessary wearing an oven mitt to protect your skin from the heat.
- When everything inside the jar is melted, remove it from the pan and let it cool on a dish towel-covered counter for about 5 minutes.
- Pour the dissolved magnesium you prepared into the quart mason jar. If it solidifies upon contact, that’s ok. Add essential oils (if desired) and place the immersion blender at the bottom of the jar blending everything completely.
Now you can rub the magnesium balm (scented or not) all over your body about an hour before bed, and enjoy some of the most restful sleep you’ve had in ages.
Simply repeat, and enjoy!