Magnesium – Your Health Keeper

In this article your will find why you need magnesium, which foods provide it and what amount to consume daily.

Magnesium is a nutrient that the body needs to stay healthy. Magnesium is important for many processes in the body, including regulating muscle and nerve function, blood sugar levels, and blood pressure and making protein, bone, and DNA. Probably the most important nutrient for that energy powerhouse, the human heart; it helps the heart muscle itself function better. Magnesium also helps protect blood vessels, which is where most of what we call heart disease actually happens.

How much magnesium do I need?

The amount of magnesium you need depends on your age and sex. Average daily recommended amounts are listed below in milligrams (mg):




Life Stage Recommended Amount
Birth to 6 months 30 mg
Infants 7-12 months 75 mg
Children 1-3 years 80 mg
Children 4-8 years 130 mg
Children 9-13 years 240 mg
Teen boys 14-18 years 410 mg
Teen girls 14-18 years 360 mg
Men 400-420 mg
Women 310-320 mg
Pregnant teens 400 mg
Pregnant women 350-360 mg
Breastfeeding teens 360 mg
Breastfeeding women 310-320 mg

What foods provide magnesium?

Magnesium is found naturally in many foods and is added to some fortified foods. You can get recommended amounts of magnesium by eating a variety of foods, including the following:

Legumes, nuts, seeds, whole grains, and green leafy vegetables (such as spinach)
Fortified breakfast cereals and other fortified foods
Milk, yogurt, and some other milk products
What kinds of magnesium dietary supplements are available?

Magnesium is available in multivitamin-mineral supplements and other dietary supplements. Forms of magnesium in dietary supplements that are more easily absorbed by the body are magnesium aspartate, magnesium citrate, magnesium lactate, and magnesium chloride.

Magnesium is also included in some laxatives and some products for treating heartburn and indigestion.

Am I getting enough magnesium?

The diets of most people in the United States provide less than the recommended amounts of magnesium. Men older than 70 and teenage girls are most likely to have low intakes of magnesium. When the amount of magnesium people get from food and dietary supplements is combined, however, total intakes of magnesium are generally above recommended amounts.