The mineral is crucial to helping absorb vitamin D.
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Roughly 50 percent of Americans are deficient in magnesium (which is easily lost by sweat) and without proper levels of the mineral, vitamin D can't be metabolized, explains study co-author Mohammed S. Razzaque, Ph.D., professor of pathology at Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine in Pennsylvania. In addition to missing out on all the benefits of increasing your vitamin D levels, low magnesium can complicate everyday athletic recovery by leading to muscle cramps and painful spasms, says Razzaque.