A serum magnesium deficiency test is a test of how much magnesium there is in the blood. This is performed by drawing blood from a vein most often found on the back of a hand or on the inside of the elbow.
No preparation is needed for the test and the procedure is quite simple. The area is cleaned with antiseptic, the health care provider wraps an elastic band around the upper arm to apply pressure to the site causing the vein to swell with blood and then, a needle is gently inserted into the vein.
The blood collects into a tube attached to the needle, the elastic band is removed. The needle is removed and the puncture site is covered with a bandage to stop any further bleeding. The needle may cause slight pain or a stinging sensation which could be followed by mild throbbing however this is temporary.
The test is performed when your doctor suspects low magnesium levels in your body. About half of the body’s magnesium is found in bone and the other half can be found in organs and inside the cells of body tissue. Only 1% is found in the bloodstream which is why blood testing is often misleading.
There are very little risks in having your blood taken; the only concerns are fainting or excessive bleeding- both of which can be handled easily in a hospital setting.
“For infants or young children, a sharp tool called a lancet may be used to puncture the skin and make it bleed. The blood collects into a small glass tube called a pipette, or onto a slide or test strip. [Línk 1]
Abnormal results from a magnesium deficiency test can be either high magnesium levels or low magnesium levels.
Higher levels could indicate Addison disease, dehydration, and diabetic acidosis. Lower levels of magnesium indicate a larger amount of problems such as alcoholism, chronic diarrhea, delirium tremens, hemodialysis, hepatic (liver) cirrhosis, hyperaldosteronism, hyperparathyroidism, pancreatitis, too much insulin, toxemia of pregnancy, and ulcerative colitis.
Magnesium plays an impactful role in your body because it is one of the most fundamental minerals that make up our body’s composition. In fact, every organ in the body needs the mineral magnesium.
Despite its importance, magnesium is often overlooked which has resulted in a large number of adult Americans being magnesium deficient. This is mainly because of our lifestyles and food choices.
Symptoms of poor magnesium intake include muscle cramps, irritability, poor sleep and chronic pain. It’s important to get adequate magnesium before signs of deficiency occur. Detailed magnesium testing can be requested at your health care provider’s office however the answers are generally misleading.
A doctor can typically only test the magnesium levels in your bloodstream which only account for about 1% of your body’s total magnesium; the majority is found in muscle and bone tissue.
Magnesium deficiency is diagnosed mostly on symptoms alone. Learn to read your signs and symptoms, and ask yourself questions to get the answers you’re seeking. Do you drink carbonated beverages and eat cakes and other sweets on a regular basis?
The more sweets and processed baked foods you have in your diet, the more likely you are deficient in magnesium. Alcoholic beverages, coffee, tea and other caffeinated drinks pose a high risk for deficiency and also deplete the magnesium levels in your body by affecting the absorption process of healthy foods.
Birth control, asthma medications, diuretic and heart medications also increase magnesium loss through the excretion of the kidneys.
If you’re taking calcium supplements, you need to add magnesium supplements to have a 1:1 ratio – magnesium is necessary for calcium, and calcium is needed for magnesium to do its part.
Symptoms of magnesium deficiency could include anxiety, difficulty falling and staying asleep, times of hyperactivity, muscle cramps, facial tics, fibromyalgia, and involuntary facial and eye movements. Magnesium relaxes the muscles, without it our muscles would be in a constant state of contraction.
Getting enough magnesium could enhance the effectiveness of treatment for asthma, depression, diabetes, fibromyalgia, hearing loss, heart failure, high blood pressure, migraine headaches, osteoporosis, eclampsia, and restless leg syndrome.
Rich sources of magnesium come from dietary choices. A diet rich in magnesium may help protect against metabolic syndrome and it promotes normal blood pressure.
Magnesium is also an important mineral that is known to be one of the main enzyme co-factors in energy production and metabolism. The body cannot produce magnesium therefore we must take it in through food sources and supplements.
There are a variety of magnesium supplements available but a onetime supply won’t last an entire day, this is where magnesium-rich foods come in to play. Magnesium is distributed widely in animal and plant foods and in beverages; basically alkaline foods containing dietary fiber provide magnesium.
Conclusion for Magnesium Deficiency Test
Magnesium deficiency has negatively affected more than half of the adults in America and because of the lack of knowledge, it’s gone unnoticed.
Magnesium deficiency tests are quick, increasing magnesium into your body is simple, so it’s easy to turn this problem around and begin to reap positive benefits. Become educated, speak with your doctor, take the necessary tests and continue to eat a healthy, well balanced diet.