Besides Vitamin D deficiency among Canadians, another common deficiency is in magnesium. This is likely because our diet in general and perhaps the food supply does not have the same amount of magnesium as in previous years.
Magnesium is responsible for muscle relaxation, whereas calcium leads to muscle contraction.
This relaxation/contraction also happens in the gut. This is why calcium supplements (including Tums) can cause constipation.
The most common symptoms of low magnesium are:
I usually recommend starting with 200 mg of Magnesium glycinate (or bisglycinate) before bed. The salt forms of magnesium (citrate, malate, gluconate) are not absorbed as well and cause more loose stool. If loosening of the stool is a desired effect due to constipation, then the magnesium salts are appropriate. Taking it before bed helps to optimize the sleep benefits of magnesium.
I do not recommend taking calcium at the same time. It counteracts the magnesium and we can usually get enough calcium in our diet.
For children, I recommend a liquid magnesium by Genestra or Cyto-Matrix. As usual, book in to chat if you want to hear more about this!