Sunday, July 25, 2010

Angry Nerves, Rebellious Muscles

I’m doing it again.

Walking around too much, bending over to pick stuff up too much. My leg is whining at me. Complaining. Why can’t you sit down for longer than ten minutes, it says.

Now I know how my friend feels who had hernia surgery earlier this year. He is big into exercise and lifting weights, obsessive almost. He is the kind of person who likes to be constantly moving, doing things. Then he herniated a muscle in his pelvic area and eventually had to get surgery done for it. He was so restless and angry that he couldn’t work out or even do something as simple as carry a laundry basket or pick up his one year old daughter.

If I don’t give my leg the rest it needs, it will get worse. But it is sooo hard to just SIT. This afternoon I picked vegetables from the garden, I chopped the vegetables (while sitting on a stool), I cooked them. I walked upstairs, I walked downstairs. I kept forgetting things I needed so I would have to walk (read “limp”) into the other room to get it. Now, thanks to my restlessness, my leg is achy, more so than before, and I feel as if I couldn’t walk across the room if I had to.

I learned something today.

Apparently, magnesium is the mineral responsible for keeping the nervous system strong. If a person, such as me, is deficient in magnesium, muscle spasms, as well as a slew of other symptoms, can occur.

Ann Louise Gittleman, Ph.D., says it clearly in her book The Living Beauty Detox Program.
“When you are magnesium deficient, depression, that rundown feeling, fatigue, irritability, anxiety, nervous tension, and spasms result (193).”

As Gittleman explains, magnesium also plays a crucial role in calcium absorption, and it is important to maintain a proper balance between the two minerals. So while magnesium calms you down, puts you in a good mood, and relaxes your muscles it is also working with calcium to build stronger bones.

Hope ignited inside me as I read about magnesium. Finally, something that I can work on right now to heal my sciatic nerve. It seems so obvious to me now. I must be deficient in magnesium (as well as calcium) and now my muscles and nerves are rebelling. They don’t want me to get away with how I’ve been treating them so poorly, not giving them enough vegetables, instead consuming too many sugary, refined carbs.

Immediately, I began researching types of foods that are rich in magnesium. After all, the closest health food store is an hour away so I can’t go out and buy a supplement right now. Besides, swallowing magnesium capsules does nothing to correct the deficiency in my diet. I have a variety of magnesium rich foods in my house right now. Not wanting to waste any time, I went around the house searching for the food that my leg is crying out for.

I ate almonds and pumpkin seeds. From the garden, I cooked carrots, beets, and purslane. A little later, I ate a salad with boiled egg.

Aside from nuts and vegetables, fish, broccoli, pumpkin, beans, wheat germ, leafy greens, soy beans, whole grains, brown rice, corn, and the herbs burdock, nettles, and horsetail are rich in magnesium. For a longer list of magnesium rich foods along with the milligrams, go to

I never realized how important magnesium is to my body. I will now make sure I incorporate magnesium rich foods as well as limit caffeine intake because caffeine can inhibit magnesium absorption.

No comments:

Post a Comment