Psstt.. every Wednesday I write a post called “Why I” and last week I wrote one on Why I am Having a Home Birth — just in case you missed it.
I’m a hard sell when it comes to “coincidences.”
Maybe there is a small percentage of the time that coincidences are simply occurrences without a connection, but I feel the majority of things happen for a reason.
It’s like saying, “Oh it’s just a coincidence that you met Scott once and didn’t really notice him but then you just so happened to see him 4 months later and actually notice him and then fall madly in love with him.”
Or, “It’s just a coincidence that the whole time your child has had a 102 fever and you didn’t bring it down with any over-the-counter medicine, but then when you went to the urgent care and gave it to your child that when it wore off, he had the uncontrollable chill shakes for 30 minutes — for the first time this whole duration of sickness!”
And even better, “It’s just a coincidence that when you stopped taking magnesium for two days, you slept incredibly shitty but that next night before bed when you took magnesium, you slept like a champ.”
…Can you see why I have a hard time believing in coincidences?
We won’t really go into detail for the first two examples I gave but let’s talk more about why I take magnesium daily (well, almost daily).
I began having sciatic pain after I gave birth to my 9lb baby Andrew but it never was an issue until I got pregnant with my second. I was in the final weeks of my first trimester when I started having sciatic pain on my right side. I found that if I did too much bending in the day, I would get sharp jolts down my right leg. I tried a few yoga classes to help me stretch it out but I found that with each yoga class I went to, I felt worse.
My midwife Katie suggested chiropractic adjustments and Natural Calm magnesium but for some reason I didn’t try either of those suggestions until well into my second trimester. I guess when you really become desperate for a solution, you will finally take the suggestions people have given you. By the middle of my second trimester, the sharp jolts turned into straight up immobilizing pain. I would have to sit on the bed and wait the pain out, or would be stuck in a position until my body stopped freaking out.
I think the reason I’ve been having so much pain is 1) I carried a 9lb baby boy on my small frame and he sat low through the pregnancy which probably did some damage and 2) Baby number two sits low, as well — possibly even lower than Andrew because I don’t ever remember being in this much discomfort through Andrew’s pregnancy. So, apparently I carry baby’s low in my body which has NOT been fun. In fact, she sits so low that I thought my pants were too tight but it was actually the pressure of her down in my crotch. Since she sits so low on my hips, it has made the last half of this pregnancy so far really miserable.
Chiropractic adjustments do help me but only for a few days. The pain in my hips get so bad that they are sore to the touch which makes sleeping sometimes incredibly uncomfortable. Since I can’t necessarily sleep on my back, I constantly have to switch from side to side to relieve the pain off each hip. We have a tempur-pedic mattress and there have been times through this pregnancy that I have literally felt like I was sleeping on concrete. I finally caved in and bought Natural Calm because I had to do whatever it took to get at least a little bit of relief.
Ever since I started taking magnesium daily, I have been able to get much better rest at night and my body tends to loosen up a bit. And want to know how I know it has helped? Can you recall that little “coincidence” that I shared about sleeping really bad for two nights after forgetting to take magnesium and then remembering to take it and sleeping a million times better? I don’t believe it was just a coincidence. I am now truly a believer in how magnesium is so crucial for our overall well-being. I also started getting random leg cramps in the middle of the night and when I started taking magnesium, they went away.
Important Info About Finding the Right Dosage: I recommend starting small and then working your way up. If you take too much magnesium, you’ll find yourself in the bathroom with the runs. Trust me, I’ve done it and it’s not fun. Start with 1/2 teaspoon once a day, then work up to 1 tsp a day. I typically take 3/4 teaspoon at night, although I should start taking it in the morning too. My plan is to buy some oil to apply once a day and then take the powder at night before bed.
Even If You Aren’t Pregnant, it’s Worth Taking
In fact, even if you aren’t pregnant magnesium is one of those minerals that is important to get into your body daily because your body depends on magnesium for optimal function (read more about why we need magnesium and what a lack of magnesium can do to our bodies here) and unfortunately almost all of us are deficient in magnesium.
This is the brand of magnesium that I have started taking. I tried the flavor packets but they taste too fake for me and remind me of Crystal Light. I use the unflavored magnesium and just take it with water. If I have sparkling water on hand, I’ll add a little bit in my cup to help soften the mineral taste but it’s not necessary.
That being said, I recently learned that the best way for the body to absorb magnesium is by applying it topically. For applying topically, this magnesium oil has great reviews from people I know. Here is another option for topical magnesium oil that I’ve heard doesn’t make your skin itchy at all.
I think with magnesium, the most important thing is finding something that works for you. Some people say they get itchy after putting magnesium on their bodies, while others don’t. Some people feel better when taking the powder, while some people don’t feel a difference. Regardless, I have found that magnesium supplementation has made a profound difference in the way I sleep and I personally think it’s worth it for anyone to try.