Sleep deprivation is a common cause of poor health. In particular sleep deprivation may contribute towards the development of mood disorders and may also perpetuate them once present. Obtaining enough sleep is important because restorative processes occur during sleep, and those that are unable to obtain adequate sleep often deteriorate in their ability to cope with daily life. Supplemental magnesium has been shown to be highly beneficial at improving sleep and this may relate to the ability of magnesium to cause relaxation in muscle tissue. Further magnesium may also cause changes to neuronal firing rates that favours a state of relaxation over that of excitation. In one study, elderly subjects who were administered 500 mg of magnesium for 8 weeks had significant improvements in sleep time and sleep efficiency, as well as significant increases in melatonin levels. The magnesium also caused significant reductions in cortisol levels, suggesting that magnesium may have anti-stress properties.
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