Magnesium and Epsom Salts: their role in aiding sleep and emotional balance

If you’re anything like me, sleep doesn’t always come too easily. You may find yourself tossing and turning all night just screaming at your mind to ‘Please Stop!’ so you can get some rest. Insomnias a tough cycle to break and, if you suffer from it, I’m sure you’ll agree that your days go a little bit to sh*t too as you struggle to concentrate and motivate yourself.

I am constantly trying new things to kick insomnias ass and I find magnesium supplements, particularly, and Epsom salt baths help (As well as other things – see blog post ‘Insomnia 101’ for other methods I use).

Ok so Epsom salts first. Adding about 2 handfuls to warm running water and soaking for approx. 20mins allows for the skin to absorb the salts. This is ideally done 2-3times a week. I like this scented one because I find the lavender soothing but there’s loads of other brands out there. Epsom salts are useful for many complaints such as soothing muscle pain and inflammation, eliminating toxins from our bodies cells, relieving constipation and improving blood sugar levels. However, my main focus was on the fact that it helps to reduce stress, therefore promoting a better night’s sleep.

The scientific name for Epsom salt is magnesium sulphate. As many of our diets are lacking in magnesium, we tend to be deficient in this vital mineral.

When we are stressed, our bodies produce excess adrenaline and cortisol which drain our magnesium stores. Magnesium is a natural stress reliever, it helps to release and bind adequate amounts of serotonin. Serotonin is the brains mood-elevating neurotransmitter, ie. chemical messenger. When magnesium is supporting Serotonin production, we are more likely to feel emotionally balanced which is why I supplement my diet.

I got this Magnesium supplement in my local health food shop. It cost me approx. €30 but I’ve seen other brands a fraction of that price. I like that it tastes like orange (similar to Berocca) so it’s easy to drink. You could opt for tablets either if you’d prefer, this particular product is a powder. Now, for the record, and to be completely honest, I can be pretty bad to take this every night (I’m just too lazy to leave my bed if I forget about it) but I personally feel I really should. When I take it for a few nights running, I really feel the benefit. A reduction in anxiety being the most obvious.

If you do decide to try these out, I hope they work for you. Like any supplements, if you experience any discomfort taking them please stop immediately and consult your GP. It is safe to take but we’re all different so just don’t be silly about it.

Magz x

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