A new study shows that increased magnesium intake is a key to helping the brain naturally reduce anxiety and stress, reducing fear response and helping with socail anxiety disorder, PTSD and panic phobias.
LOS ANGELES, Dec. 5, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- A supplemented intake of magnesium is found to enhance the brain's ability to reduce fear and anxiety responses, making way for a possible supplemental treatment for many anxiety disorders such as social anxiety disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), panic disorder, specific phobias and others. In the October 2011 issue of The Journal of Neuroscience, top neuroscientists at Tsinghua University in Beijing, University of Texas, and University of Toronto revealed that by increasing the extracellular magnesium concentration in the brain through a new magnesium compound called Magtein(TM), the cognitive ability - an essential facility that controls fear and anxiety - is enhanced. This development becomes extremely significant considering anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in America, affecting 18% of the population(1).
Anxiety disorders can be triggered by fear and thus, affect cognitive functioning. When in danger, fear is essential for survival. This fear triggers the brain to respond with many split-second changes in the body to prepare to defend against the danger or to avoid it. This response is a healthy reaction meant to protect a person from harm.
But in anxiety disorders this reaction is enhanced so that the fear memory continues even when one is no longer in danger, affecting cognitive ability on a daily basis.
"Through our study, we found that increasing brain magnesium with Magtein enhances not only the learning and memory ability, but also top-down inhibition of fear memory of rats," explains Dr. Guosong Liu, one of the study's principal scientists. "When the cognitive ability is enhanced, fear responses such as anxiety-like and PTSD-like behaviors, are controlled."
According to Liu, the use of a high magnesium treatment induces a unique pattern of action on brain regions involved in and responsible for the body's emotional processes. It heightens the function of the prefrontalcortex, a brain region involved in controlling fear responses, without affecting the function of amygdala - the brain's evolutionary conserved region involved in fear memory formation and storage. "By increasing brain magnesium through Magtein, cognitive ability goes up, fear memory remains unchanged".