9 foods rich in magnesium

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Medically reviewed by Melissa Nieves, LND

Magnesium is an essential mineral for your health. This nutrient is involved in critical processes such as nerve function, DNA synthesis, stress response, regulation of blood sugar and blood pressure, and maintenance of bone health.

The need for magnesium varies according to age, gender and pregnancy status. Most adult males require between 400 and 420 milligrams of magnesium per day and most adult females require between 310 and 400 milligrams per day.

However, scientists argue that while current daily magnesium recommendations are likely sufficient to prevent magnesium deficiency, they are not high enough to promote optimal health and protect against conditions such as heart disease.

Unfortunately, most people fall short of current recommendations for magnesium intake. In fact, the study’s findings suggest that only 40 percent of U.S. adults meet recommendations for daily magnesium intake, and that 45 percent of Americans are magnesium deficient.

Low magnesium intake is so common because most Americans eat diets high in ultra-processed foods and low in magnesium-rich foods, such as vegetables, grains and beans. A low-magnesium diet can harm your health in a number of ways and can increase your risk of developing chronic health conditions like heart disease.

Fortunately, magnesium can be found in a number of foods that can fit into any eating pattern.

Related: Before you buy magnesium supplements from TikTok, here’s what you need to know


Greens are packed with a variety of nutrients, including fiber, vitamins, and minerals like magnesium. A number of vegetables provide a good source of magnesium, but some vegetables are higher in magnesium than others.

Greens are particularly high in magnesium, with some providing over 35 percent of your daily requirement in just one serving.

  • Spinach: 157 milligrams (mg) per cooked cup, or 37% of the Daily Value (DV)

  • Chard: 150 mg per cooked cup, or 36% of the DV

Vegetables such as zucchini, artichokes and peas also provide a concentrated source of magnesium.

  • Acorn Squash: 88.2 mg per cooked cup, or 21% of the DV

  • Artichoke hearts: 71.4 mg per cooked cup, or 17% of the DV

  • Green peas: 62.4 mg per cooked cup, or 15% of the DV

In addition to magnesium, vegetables contain nutrients and plant compounds that are essential for health and help protect against chronic disease. Research shows that people who consume diets rich in vegetables are less likely to develop chronic health conditions such as cancer and heart disease.


Some fruits, such as dried figs, avocados and bananas, provide a good source of magnesium. Fruit is also an important source of fiber as well as vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C, potassium and folic acid.

  • Avocado: 58.3 mg per avocado, or 14% of the DV

  • Bananas: 40.5 mg per sliced ​​cup, or 10% of the DV

  • Dried apricots: 41.6 mg per cup, or 10% of the DV

Avocados are one of the best fruit-based sources of magnesium. Due to their impressive nutritional profile, avocados have been linked to numerous health benefits, including weight loss and improved heart and cognitive health.


Seeds are among the healthiest foods you can eat. They provide an important source of fiber and healthy fats and are rich in minerals such as zinc and magnesium.

  • Hemp seeds: 210 mg per 3 tablespoons, or 50% of the DV

  • Pumpkin seeds: 154 mg per 1 oz, or 37% of the DV

  • Chia seeds: 95 mg per 1 oz, or 23% of the DV

Hemp seeds are surprisingly rich in magnesium. Adding just three tablespoons of these tiny seeds to your diet per day covers half of your daily magnesium requirement.

Hemp seeds are also high in protein, healthy fats and zinc, an important nutrient for immune health. Studies show that incorporating hemp seeds into your diet can help reduce heart disease risk factors such as LDL cholesterol.

Beans and Lentils

Beans and lentils are excellent sources of magnesium. Lima beans, white beans, black beans and lentils are especially rich in this vital nutrient.

  • Lima Beans: 126 mg per cooked cup, or 30% of the DV

  • Black beans: 120 mg per cooked cup, or 29% of the DV

  • White beans: 113 mg per cooked cup, or 27% of the DV

  • Lentils: 71.3 mg per cooked cup, or 17% of the DV

In addition to providing magnesium, beans and lentils are a concentrated source of fiber and the B vitamin folate, which is especially important during pregnancy for its role in fetal growth and development.

Just one cup of black beans provides 256 mg of folate, or 42 percent of the recommended intake during pregnancy.

Related: Health Benefits of Vitamin B12


Cereals and pseudocereals are smart choices if you’re looking for a healthy way to increase your magnesium intake.

Whole grains are a better source of nutrients like magnesium because they contain all three parts of the wheat grain: germ, endosperm and bran, which house essential nutrients like fiber and minerals.

  • Amaranth: 160 mg per cooked cup, or 38% of the DV

  • Teff: 126 mg per cooked cup, or 30% of the DV

  • Quinoa: 118 mg per cooked cup, or 28% of the DV

Because they’re high in heart-healthy nutrients like magnesium and fiber, diets high in grains have been associated with a reduced risk of heart disease.

Related: 30 Best High-Fiber Foods


Like seeds, nuts are rich in magnesium. Including nuts like Brazil nuts, cashews and almonds in your diet is a smart way to increase your magnesium intake.

  • Brazil nuts: 107 mg per 1 oz, or 25% of the DV

  • Cashew nuts: 82.8 mg per 1 oz, or 20% of the DV

  • Almonds: 76.5 mg per 1 oz, or 18% of the DV

While technically a legume, peanuts are another good source of magnesium.

  • Peanuts: 53.3 mg per 1 oz, or 13% of the DV

  • Peanut butter: 53.8 mg per 2 tablespoons, or 13% of the DV

Whole nuts can be mixed with dried fruit to create a magnesium-rich snack, while nut butters like almond butter and peanut butter can be incorporated into dishes like oatmeal parfaits and yogurt to boost the content. of magnesium.

Soy products

People following plant-based diets often depend on soy products, such as tofu and soy milk, as their main dietary source of protein. Soy products are an excellent source of plant protein and also provide a number of vitamins and minerals, including magnesium.

  • Soybeans: 99.2 mg per cooked cup, or 24% of the DV

  • Tempeh: 77 mg per 100 grams, or 18% of the DV

  • Soya milk: 51.2 mg per cup, or 12% of the DV

Edamame, or immature soybeans, is one of the healthiest soy products you can eat. These bright green beans are packed with essential nutrients like protein, calcium, iron, folate, and potassium.

A one-cup serving of edamame covers just under a quarter of your daily magnesium requirement.

Cocoa products

While chocolate products aren’t generally thought of as healthy, cocoa products are actually rich in a variety of essential nutrients. Unsweetened cocoa products like cocoa powder and cocoa beans are a good source of magnesium, as well as other nutrients like iron and manganese.

  • Cocoa seeds: 93 mg per 3 tablespoons, or 22% of the DV

  • Cocoa powder: 80 mg per 2 tablespoons, or 19% of the DV

  • Dark Chocolate (70-85% Cocoa Solids): 64.6 mg per 1 oz, or 15% of the DV

Because cocoa products are rich in essential minerals like magnesium, they can make a healthy addition to recipes like baked goods, smoothies, chia pudding, and yogurt.


Eating more fish can benefit your health in several ways. Seafood is rich in protein, omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid (EPA and DHA), vitamins and minerals. Although magnesium is mostly concentrated in plant foods, fish and shellfish contain a surprising amount of magnesium.

  • Canned oysters: 134 mg per can, or 32% of the DV

  • Canned mackerel: 134 mg per can, or 32% of the DV

  • Salmon: 74.9 mg per medium tenderloin, or 18% of the DV

Oily fish is also an excellent source of omega-3 fats, which help regulate inflammation in the body. Diets high in omega-3-rich seafood are associated with a lower risk of heart disease and cognitive decline.

A quick review

Magnesium is a mineral involved in critical bodily processes such as nerve function, blood pressure regulation and DNA synthesis.

Most adults in the United States don’t consume enough magnesium on a daily basis, which could harm overall health and increase the risk of disease.

Fortunately, magnesium is found in a number of foods, including vegetables, beans, grains, cocoa products and seafood. Try adding some of the foods on this list to your diet for a nutritious way to boost your magnesium intake.

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Read the original article in Salute.

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