Minerals are involved in almost all biological processes in our body and can also have a decisive influence on our sleep. Here we explain why the right supply of minerals can improve sleep and which bulk and trace elements are particularly important for a restful night.
Table of Contents
- What are minerals?
- Minerals & Sleep
- These minerals are detrimental to sleep
- The 4 most important minerals for a good night's sleep
- Is a dietary supplement with minerals useful?
1. What are minerals?
Minerals are vital nutrients that are essential for our health and performance and fulfill numerous important functions in our body. Minerals are involved in almost all energy and metabolic processes and contribute, among other things, to the control of muscle and nerve functions or the regulation of a healthy water and electrolyte balance. They are also essential for building and maintaining healthy body structures (eg. B. bones, muscles, teeth) and enzymes, hormones or blood cells and also play an important role in brain function, our heart and the immune system. So that we remain healthy and efficient and that all biological processes in our body run smoothly, an adequate supply of minerals is of great importance.
Minerals are divided into two groups according to the amount in which they are needed in the body: bulk and trace elements. Bulk elements (also macro minerals) occur in a higher concentration of about 50 mg per 1 kilogram of body weight and are also referred to as so-called electrolytes due to their participation in the regulation of the water balance. Trace elements (including micro-minerals), on the other hand, occur in smaller amounts of less than 50 mg/kg.
Quantity elements: calcium, chloride, potassium, magnesium, sodium, phosphorus
Trace elements: chromium, iron, fluorine, iodine, copper, manganese, selenium, zinc
Unlike many vitamins, minerals cannot be produced by the body itself and must be supplied entirely through daily food. With a healthy and balanced nutrition , our body usually receives a sufficiently high amount of minerals. However, under stress, lack of sleep or as a result of health problems, the daily requirement can increase and it can make sense to take minerals from a dietary supplement so that the body has the optimal amount of the important substances available.
2. Mineral deficiency
Even an acute mineral deficiency has a significant impact on our health and daily well-being. Typical and directly noticeable deficiency symptoms include fatigue, loss of appetite, the occurrence of cramps or muscle and bone pain, hair loss, difficulty concentrating or a weakened immune system. But serious cardiovascular diseases and the development of anemia or osteoporosis can also be associated with a mineral deficiency. Deficiencies in calcium, magnesium, iron, iodine or zinc are widespread.
3. Minerals & Sleep
Especially at night, our body depends on a good supply of nutrients so that sleep and the associated regeneration processes are not disturbed at night and we can recover optimally. Because some minerals are involved in exactly those bodily functions that regulate our sleeping patterns, our sleep-wake cycle and the quality of our sleep. A deficiency or undersupply of certain bulk or trace elements can therefore negatively affect falling asleep, sleep quality and sleep duration and promote the development of sleep disorders. A lack of sleep that occurs in this way or the poor quality of sleep in turn increase the daily nutrient requirement and counteract an already existing mineral deficiency.
4. The 4 most important minerals for a good night's sleep
Since an all-round healthy organism forms a good basis for restful sleep, you should of course rely on an overall balanced diet. If you want to improve your sleep in a targeted manner, you can make sure to take enough minerals and vitamins and certain amino acids, especially in the evening. This means that the body has a sufficient amount of the important nutrients available during the night, which it can use to maintain our health and for a restful sleep. You can now find out which minerals improve sleep and are particularly important for a restful night.
Magnesium plays a central role in energy production, metabolism and the function of muscle and nerve cells. It supports the relaxation of the muscles and body cells, reduces the stress on the nervous system and helps to protect us from restlessness, nervousness or inner tension. Magnesium also enables a healthy production of the sleep hormone melatonin, so that we can easily fall asleep in the evening and develop a regular sleep-wake cycle. This has also been shown in various studies, in which the intake of magnesium not only led to an increase in melatonin levels, but also to a noticeable improvement in the quality and length of sleep. The mineral has an overall sleep-promoting effect, counteracts stress and enables you to fall asleep and sleep through the night in a relaxed manner. You can find more information about the mineral magnesium in this article.
Important functions: energy metabolism, muscle and nerve function, bone formation and maintenance
Symptoms of a deficiency: muscle and performance weakness, reduced stress resistance, nervousness, cardiovascular problems (e.g. B. high blood pressure, circulatory disorders)
Occurrence in food: Green vegetables, pumpkin seeds, millet or wholemeal bread and wholemeal pasta, milk, meat
Potassium can help to minimize physical stress and tension in particular and prepare the body for restful sleep. Potassium controls heart function and blood pressure and contributes to the normal function of nerve and muscle cells. Various studies have shown that an optimized supply of potassium can effectively lower blood pressure and the risk of stroke and alleviate the resulting nervousness and headaches. The cardiovascular system is positively influenced, stress is minimized and peaceful sleep is promoted.
Important functions: blood pressure, nerve & cell function, fluid balance
Symptoms of deficiency: muscle weakness, fatigue, headaches, cramps, mood swings, unhealthy blood pressure and abnormal heart rhythms
Found in food: bananas, fruit, dried fruit, mushrooms, potatoes, legumes
An undersupply of iron is one of the most common mineral deficiencies and also stands in the way of a good night's sleep. The trace element is an important component of the blood and essential for the transport and storage of oxygen in our body. If there is a lack of iron, organs, muscles and cells are no longer optimally supplied with oxygen, which slows down cell work and makes almost all bodily functions more difficult. A sufficient iron concentration, on the other hand, means that our body and brain are optimally supplied with oxygen and other nutrients via the blood, especially during sleep, and that the regenerative processes can run smoothly. Iron also plays an important role in hormone formation and has been successfully used in various studies to positively influence serotonin-melatonin synthesis, which is fundamental to healthy sleep.
Important functions: formation of blood and hormones, transport and storage of oxygen
Symptoms of a deficiency: anemia and tiredness, paleness, weakness, impaired concentration and performance
Dietary occurrence: meat, cabbage, nuts, whole grains, beans and peas, spinach
The trace element zinc is involved in important metabolic processes, the function of numerous enzymes and the formation of our DNA and has a positive effect on the immune system. Due to its important role in hormone and enzyme formation, some studies have shown a link between zinc deficiency and sleep disorders. A zinc deficiency therefore led to reduced hormone production and a falling level of the messenger substances serotonin & melatonin, which are crucial for a good night's sleep. A sufficient concentration of zinc, on the other hand, ensures a balanced hormone level and can thus promote a healthy sleep rhythm.
Important functions: cell metabolism, enzyme & hormone production, growth, immune system
Symptoms of a deficiency: Dry skin, hair loss, metabolic disorders, weakened immune system, tiredness
Dietary occurrence: beef, nuts and whole grain cheese and eggs
5. Does a dietary supplement with minerals make sense?
Minerals are critical to healthy bodily function and contribute significantly to our health and well-being. In good health, under "normal" everyday conditions and with the help of a balanced diet, we can usually provide the body with all the important nutrients in sufficient quantities. However, if we neglect our daily diet or come under physical or psychological stress, it is not always easy to ensure an optimal supply of minerals. It is precisely then that an additional intake of dietary supplements can make a decisive contribution to staying healthy and efficient. Our sleep also benefits from this, so that we can optimally regenerate at night and start a new day refreshed and healthy.
In contrast to a dietary supplement with vitamins, it is particularly important to ensure the correct dosage when taking minerals. Because not only a deficiency, but also an excess of one or more mineral elements and an overall imbalance of the various substances can have harmful consequences for health. An additional intake of minerals is therefore often only recommended if there is a proven deficiency. The best thing to do is get advice from your family doctor.
Minerals are vital nutrients that are involved in countless bodily processes and are essential for the healthy functioning of body and mind.
A mineral deficiency is harmful to health and affects not only daily performance but also sleep.
In particular, the bulk elements magnesium and potassium as well as the trace elements iron and zinc can have a positive effect on sleep and promote sleep quality.
A sufficient supply of minerals can usually be ensured through a balanced diet and effectively supported with the help of controlled dietary supplements.
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