April 22 2021
What is ZMA?
ZMA stands for zinc, magnesium aspartate. ZMA is a popular supplement taken by many bodybuilders, athletes, and other fitness enthusiasts.
The supplement consists of three major ingredients, namely zinc, magnesium and vitamin B6. It is believed that ZMA improves endurance and enhances muscle growth. Also, it improves strength, recovery and sleep.
ZMA manufacturers produce the supplement alternative forms of zinc and magnesium. Some of them also add vitamins and minerals to the supplement.
Zinc, magnesium and vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) plays a significant role in our body. Now you might be wondering what roles each of them plays. Let us find out.
Zinc: Zinc is a trace mineral. It is important for functionality if various enzymes are involved in metabolism and digestion.
Magnesium: Magnesium regulates many chemical, biochemical, reactions, including energy creation and nerve and muscle function.
Vitamin B6 or pyridoxine: Pyridoxine is a water-soluble vitamin and is needed for the formation of neurotransmitters and metabolism of various nutrients
The research in the field of ZMA is still emerging. Intake of zinc, magnesium and vitamin B6 offers many other health benefits like improved immunity, regulation of blood sugar and mood. Further, if you are deficient in any of these nutrients, then intake of ZMA becomes much more important.
ZMA and athletic performance
It is said that ZMA supplement enhances the performance of athletes and helps them to build their muscles.
Testosterone is the hormone that affects your muscle mass. Another Hormone called IGF-1 or Insulin growth factor 1 affects growth and recovery. Both these hormones may be reduced if you are deficient in either of these minerals.
If your body has low levels of zinc or magnesium then your performance might be compromised. Now, these low levels of zinc and magnesium might be the result of their loss through sweat or urination. Also, these minerals might be deficient because of strict diets.
A study involving 27 football players showed that if ZMA supplement is taken daily, then muscle strength and functional power might be increased. Also, it can result in high levels of testosterone and IGF-1.
When zinc and magnesium are taken individually, reduction in muscle fatigue has been observed. Also, they either raise testosterone or prevent its fall due to exercise. Nevertheless, more research is needed to know the benefits of ZMA in athletic performance.
Benefits of ZMA
ZMA boost immunity
Zinc, magnesium and vitamin B6 plays a significant role in immunity. Let us find out how. First talking about zinc. Zinc is not only essential for the function of various immune cells, but it also reduces the risk of infections and aids wound healing.
Magnesium deficiency is often linked to chronic inflammation. Also, it is seen that magnesium supplements can reduce the levels of inflammatory markers like C-reactive protein and interleukin 6.
Vitamin B6 deficiency has also been associated with poor immunity. Vitamin B6 is needed to produce white blood cells. Also, it enhances their ability to fight against infection.
ZMA controls blood sugar
It is seen that zinc and magnesium help people with diabetes in controlling their blood sugar levels. A study was done to know the effects of zinc on people with diabetes. It was found that zinc supplement reduced fasting blood glucose, haemoglobin A1C as well as post-meal blood sugar.
HbA1C is the marker for long term blood sugar levels. It was observed that zinc supplement lowers HbA1C to an extent similar to a diabetic drug called metformin.
Insulin is the hormone that is responsible for the transport of glucose from the blood to tissues. Magnesium improves the body's ability to use insulin. And hence in regulating blood sugar levels.
ZMA improves sleep
It is believed that zinc and magnesium combination improves sleep quality. According to the research, magnesium activates a parasympathetic system leading to the feeling of calmness and being relaxed.
Also, animal and human studies say that zinc supplements help to improve sleep quality.
ZMA elevate mood
Researchers believe that magnesium and Vitamin B6 help us to elevate our mood. A study involving 8900 adults who took very low magnesium showed that they had a higher risk of developing depression.
Another study showed that supplementing with magnesium daily can help to reduce the symptoms of depression as effectively as any other antidepressant drug. Many times the low levels of vitamin B6 are linked with depression.
So we have seen that ZMA improves our immunity, mood, sleep and blood sugar levels.
Side effects of ZMA
Before beginning with any supplement, we often look at its side effects as well. So let us now check the side effects of ZMA.
Till now, no side effects if the supplement has been reported. However, if high doses of these nutrients are taken, then one may experience few side effects.
Side effects associated with high intake of zinc are as follows:
diarrhoea, vomiting, nausea, headache, dizziness, stomach cramps, loss of appetite, reduced immune function High dose of magnesium can cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea and stomach ache Excess of vitamin B6 can cause nerve damage and pain in hands or feet However, if you take the recommended dose and don't exceed it, then this won't be an issue.
Another point worth mentioning is that both zinc and magnesium do react with certain medication inducing antibiotics, antihypertensive and diuretics. So if you have been taking these medicines then talk to your doctor before beginning with the supplement.
Check out Alvizia ZMA supplement
Alvizia ZMA enhances sleep quality and hence improves recovery. Sleep deprivation often leads to decreased exercise tolerance. ZMA supplement restores that exercise tolerance. The supplement is designed to improve endurance and accelerate healing and repair. When we exercise a lot or kay be when we are very stressed out, we lose much if needed zinc and magnesium. However, the intake of this muscle recovery supplement can prevent the deficiency of these minerals. The deficiency of zinc, magnesium and B6 is quite common in the population.
Zinc has antioxidant properties and hence improves the health of the skin. Also, it boosts immunity by enhancing cell repair and cell growth. It is being said that these supplements are quite effective for men. They not only benefit their health but also help in post-workout recovery. It acts as a natural booster for bulking good muscles. Talking about women, ZMA is considered as energy boosters for them.
Healthy magnesium levels in our body ensure deeper and more sound sleep and hence magnesium supplements work well for those athletes who experience restless sleep. The sleep cycle is also regulated by vitamin B6. Vitamin B6 enhances energy as well. When zinc, magnesium and vitamin B6 come together, they ensure speedy muscle recovery and provide improved strength and stamina.