Eliminate magnesium deficiency with the right diet

A lack of magnesium can lead to countless incorrect reactions and malfunctions. You can find out here how you can not only prevent a magnesium deficiency but also remedy it with the right diet – namely with nine very specific foods

Eliminate magnesium deficiency with food

Unfortunately, the symptoms of a magnesium deficiency are not always immediately associated with a chronic magnesium deficiency.

If you knew that many diseases are made worse by a magnesium deficiency, you could react very quickly – namely with magnesium-rich foods that can quickly remedy almost any magnesium deficiency and thus improve many symptoms.

But what are the symptoms that indicate a magnesium deficiency?

Magnesium deficiency has many faces

The most well-known magnesium deficiency symptom is muscle cramps in the legs .

However, did you know that a lack of magnesium can lead to or worsen anxiety, depression and migraines and that a lack of magnesium can prevent weight loss if you are overweight?

Did you know that magnesium deficiency can be responsible for hyperactivity, insomnia, numbness or tingling in the limbs and nervous twitching of the eyes?

Or did you know that low magnesium levels can contribute to osteoporosis and promote diabetes? That magnesium deficiency can also promote any chronic inflammation and that magnesium has an anti-inflammatory effect?

Would you also have thought that it is magnesium deficiency that can lead to tooth decay, premenstrual syndrome, infertility , impotence, high blood pressure and cardiac arrhythmia?

Did you know that optimizing magnesium levels can significantly improve symptoms of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS)?

Or that magnesium aluminum, which is suspected of causing Alzheimer’s disease, can prevent it from migrating into the brain?

Did you know that an increased aluminum level in the brain and at the same time an extreme magnesium deficiency have been found in Parkinson’s disease as well as in some other neurological diseases?

Also, has anyone ever told you that excess calcium in older people promotes calcification of blood vessels and joint stiffness, while magnesium does just the opposite?

And what do you think of it? The older you get, the less magnesium your body can draw from food. But if you ensure good magnesium absorption and thus a high magnesium level with foods that are exceptionally rich in magnesium and a healthy digestive system, then the tide will turn and you will automatically become younger again.

The risk of a magnesium deficiency is therefore not worth it one bit.

Detect a magnesium deficiency

If you already suffer from one or more of the above conditions, you can almost certainly assume that you have a magnesium deficiency .

However, there can of course also be a latent magnesium deficiency, i.e. an unnoticed magnesium deficiency that has not yet triggered any symptoms of the disease, e.g. has not existed long enough.

If you would like medical proof of your magnesium deficiency, you could have your doctor test it with a blood test of whole blood (serum plus blood cells).

If the magnesium value is only measured in the serum, it can still be in the normal range, even though there has long been a magnesium deficiency, simply because up to 95 percent of the body’s magnesium is in our body cells and only a small part in the intercellular fluid.

However, the serum magnesium value only reflects the magnesium content of the interstitial fluid, not the situation in the cells.

Once you know your magnesium levels, you can assess your current magnesium needs and feed accordingly.

What is your magnesium requirement?

Of course, not everyone has the same magnesium requirement.

Magnesium requirements vary depending on lifestyle and diet, state of health, current magnesium levels, etc.

The need for magnesium increases, for example, when taking certain medications (e.g. diuretics), with a high-protein diet, in physical or mentally stressful situations, when drinking a lot of black tea or soft drinks, when suffering from intestinal fungi or when you sweat a lot and thereby lose minerals.

You can also read about other factors that influence your personal magnesium requirement in our detailed article on magnesium deficiency.

An official requirement value of 350 to 400 mg magnesium per day serves as a rough guide for adults (without magnesium deficiency). However, many experts from the field of orthomolecular medicine consider this value to be far too low and, to be on the safe side, recommend 600 to 900 mg magnesium per day.

Eliminate magnesium deficiency with the right diet

So how can you prevent magnesium deficiency? And how can you remedy an existing magnesium deficiency? And in a natural way – namely simply with the right diet? Which foods are the ones that provide the most magnesium?

Below we present those foods that contain a particularly large amount of magnesium and that can remedy a magnesium deficiency if you regularly include them in your diet.

Let’s start with one of the foods richest in magnesium, the pumpkin seeds:

Pumpkin seeds contain a particularly large amount of magnesium

Pumpkin seeds provide almost as much magnesium as sunflower seeds, namely 400 mg per 100 grams. At the same time, pumpkin seeds provide an enormous amount of iron (over 12 mg) – a value that no other food can reach so quickly.

Trace elements such as copper and zinc and, of course, the B vitamins are also found in considerable amounts in pumpkin seeds.

Pumpkin seeds can easily be nibbled out of your hand or sprinkled over salads.

But they can also be wonderfully processed into raw food crackers:

To do this, soak the seeds overnight, then mix them in a high-performance blender with a little water or fresh tomatoes, then add dried tomatoes, red peppers, onions, some garlic and linseed. Mix everything again, season with herb salt, marjoram or oregano and spread the result on a baking tray lined with baking paper or on the foil of your dehydrator. Bake or dry the flat cakes until they are crispy.

You can also use 1/3 almonds, 1/3 sunflower seeds and 1/3 pumpkin seeds for the dough.

Don’t forget how extremely positive pumpkin seeds are for prostate and bladder health.

In any case, pumpkin seeds should have a permanent place in your magnesium-optimized diet.

High magnesium content in cocoa

Cocoa is also a very magnesium-rich food. Its magnesium content is similar to that of pumpkin seeds. Cocoa also provides many trace elements and is also a valuable source of antioxidants.

A magnesium deficiency often manifests itself in a craving for chocolate – not because the body wants chocolate, but because it needs magnesium. However, giving into the cravings would not be the right way, since ordinary milk chocolate contains very little cocoa, but a lot of sugar and plenty of milk powder.

A cocoa-rich alternative would be dark chocolate. It is best to choose a chocolate with at least 70 percent cocoa content, which is ideally sweetened with xylitol. It is also a good idea to make your own chocolate from high-quality ingredients.

Of course, you can also process cocoa into fine drinks or conjure up delicious energy balls from it – e.g. B. together with nuts and almonds, which with 170 mg magnesium are also among the very good magnesium suppliers.

Amaranth can correct magnesium deficiency

With 300 mg magnesium per 100 grams, amaranth – the tiny grain of a foxtail plant – is an excellent source of magnesium, which is also very easy to consume.

Amaranth tastes particularly good in bread, e.g. B. in a spelt-amaranth bread. Amaranth pops or amaranth flakes are also easy to use, e.g. B. in muesli or in pastries.

Just like amaranth, quinoa is one of the gluten-free pseudocereals and also provides a lot of valuable magnesium.

Quinoa against magnesium deficiency

With 280 mg magnesium per 100 grams, quinoa is a very high-quality source of magnesium – especially since quinoa can easily be consumed in significantly larger quantities than e.g. Cocoa.

Quinoa is best rinsed thoroughly under running water in a sieve and then prepared like rice as a fine side dish.

Incidentally, rice provides less than half of the quinoa magnesium, and only if it is whole grain rice. White rice (polished rice), on the other hand, only contains around 30 mg of magnesium per 100 grams and is, therefore, nothing more than a stomach filler.

Moreover, since potatoes only contain 20 mg of magnesium and whole-grain pasta only around 50 mg of magnesium, it is definitely worth replacing the usual side dishes with quinoa from time to time.

Sesame for magnesium deficiency

Sesame seeds are particularly well-known as a source of calcium. But their magnesium value is also high at the top of the magnesium suppliers at just under 350 mg.

Sesame can be sprinkled over salads or in muesli. In order to increase the bioavailability of the micronutrients, the sesame can easily be sprouted, i.e. soaked in water overnight or for a few hours.

If you choose whole grain oat flakes for your muesli – which you sprinkle the sesame on – then the oats will give you an additional 140 mg of magnesium per 100 grams.

Sesame also tastes delicious in bread recipes, on rolls, crackers and in sauces.

Sesame butter (tahini) is particularly easy to use. This is an excellent way to refine sauces, soups, shakes and smoothies.

A delicious sesame milk can also be prepared from sesame by simply mixing 200 ml of water with 1 tablespoon of sesame and 1 to 3 pitted dates in a high-performance blender. The drink can then be flavoured with cardamom, cinnamon and/or vanilla. If you want, you can first strain out the solid components to get a thinner milk.

The sesame milk fits very well into a base excess diet and can be enjoyed for breakfast, as a dessert or as a snack.

Poppy against magnesium deficiency

Poppy seeds are also at the top of the magnesium premier league. 333 mg of magnesium can be found in 100 grams of poppy seeds.

Of course, you never eat 100 grams of poppy seeds, but 20 grams of poppy seeds provide you with 60 mg magnesium and thus cover a large part of your daily magnesium requirement.

If you also choose organic steamed poppy seeds, you can confidently nibble on the poppy seeds every day, as they contain less morphine and are therefore no longer addictive. In addition, steamed poppy seeds are already ground and can be used immediately for (basic) cakes, pastries, energy balls, shakes, muesli, desserts and fruit salads.

Legumes remedy magnesium deficiency

Whether white beans, chickpeas, peas, broad beans or lentils – they are all rich in magnesium and provide you with between 120 and 190 mg of magnesium per 100 grams.

Apart from the obligatory bean stew, legumes can be used to conjure up many extremely delicious dishes, such as spinach and lentil quiche or chickpea balls.

If you also pay attention to the correct preparation, then you will not or – depending on your disposition – only rarely get flatulence even after eating legumes.

In any case, soak the legumes at least overnight before preparing them and discard the soaking water. If necessary, change the soaking water once or twice during the soaking time.

Also use anti-flatulence spices such as savory, coriander, caraway, cumin, fenugreek, turmeric, dill, cayenne or ginger.

Nettle works against magnesium deficiency

With 80 mg magnesium per 100 g, stinging nettle is another excellent source of magnesium and one of the most magnesium-rich vegetables.

Swiss chard contains exactly as much magnesium as stinging nettle, but due to its high oxalic acid content, the magnesium from chard is not quite as easily absorbable as from stinging nettle, which is free of oxalic acid.

Almonds (170 mg) and cashew nuts (270 mg), for example, would also provide significantly more magnesium, but you do not only want to eat seeds and nuts, but also other food groups.

You can use the young leaves of the stinging nettle to prepare green smoothies or all dishes that normally use spinach or chard.

Since the nettle, like spinach, collapses a lot when its leaves are steamed, it is not a problem to eat 200 grams of nettles in one meal.

With 200 grams of stinging nettles, you already absorb 160 mg of magnesium, which is almost half of your daily magnesium requirement.

If you rarely go out into the countryside or if stinging nettles don’t grow near you, you can also use stinging nettle leaf powder, which you can stir into soups, dressings, smoothies or juices.

Bananas perfect for magnesium deficiency

Bananas are often described as particularly rich in magnesium and are therefore recommended for combating a magnesium deficiency. In reality, however, fresh bananas contain only 30 mg, which is about as much (or less) magnesium as avocados, blackberries, and raspberries.

However, dried bananas are actually an excellent source of magnesium at 110 mg per 100 grams and should therefore be regularly enriched in your diet. Dried bananas also taste great and are very suitable as a snack or provisions for on the go.

Dried figs (70 mg magnesium), dried apricots (50 mg) and dried dates (50 mg) are also delicious sources of magnesium and will help to remedy your magnesium deficiency.

Couscous against magnesium deficiency

Even whole-grain products such as couscous, ideally in the wholemeal version or as wholemeal pasta and wholemeal bread can also help to cover the daily magnesium requirement. For example, one serving (150 g) of cooked wholemeal couscous provides a good 50 mg of magnesium.

Let’s summarize how the right diet can prevent a magnesium deficiency or remedy an existing magnesium deficiency:

How your diet can fix a magnesium deficiency

The right diet to correct a magnesium deficiency could look like this, for example:

  1. Have breakfast with oatmeal with sesame, sunflower seeds, cashew nuts, amaranth pops and various dried fruits.
  2. As a snack, prepare sesame or almond milk sweetened with dried fruit.
  3. When buying bread, choose a wholemeal bread with amaranth, or bake it yourself.
  4. Eat more quinoa as a side dish and nettles as a vegetable.
  5. Spice up your shakes and smoothies with nettle leaf powder.
  6. If you bake cakes or pastries, incorporate poppy seeds into the recipe.
  7. Scatter pumpkin seeds over salads more often or nibble on them in between.
  8. Find delicious recipes with legumes and enjoy them for lunch or dinner.
  9. You can combine the legumes with a wholegrain couscous.
  10. Take as a snack – e.g. also after sport – eat dried bananas.

With all these tips, you will not only easily be able to meet the official minimum magnesium requirement of around 350 to 400 mg, but also the significantly higher requirement of around 600 mg or more, which many nutritional and health experts have set.

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Dietary supplement against magnesium deficiency

Should you not be able to take care of a magnesium-rich diet so much due to time constraints or other reasons, you could improve your magnesium supply with the help of dietary supplements.

When taking magnesium supplements by mouth, remember that magnesium is better absorbed in several small doses than in a single large daily dose.

So it would not be optimal if you want to cover your entire daily magnesium requirement with a serving of 400 milligrams or more of magnesium. In this case, your body would only absorb about 50 percent of the magnesium.

However, if you take less than 200 milligrams of magnesium several times a day, then your body will be able to utilize 75 percent of it – of course only if it is high-quality magnesium.

It is therefore important to divide the total magnesium-dose into several portions and to take them throughout the day.

These magnesium compounds exist

If you buy magnesium, then you always get a magnesium COMPOUND, i.e. magnesium, which is associated with another substance, such as .B.

  • Magnesium citrate: Magnesium bound to citrate, the salt of citric acid
  • Magnesium carbonate: Magnesium bound to carbonate, the salt of carbonic acid
  • Magnesium glycinate: Magnesium bound to the amino acid glycine
  • Magnesium orotate: Magnesium bound to orotate, the salt of orotic acid
  • Magnesium sulphate: Magnesium bound to sulphate, the salt of sulfuric acid. Magnesium sulphate is also known as Epsom salt or Epsom salt. (Not to be confused with Glauber’s salt (= sodium sulphate)).
  • Magnesium oxide: Magnesium bound to oxide, formed during the combustion of magnesium
  • Magnesium malate: Magnesium bound to malate, the salt of malic acid
  • Magnesium chloride: Magnesium bound to chloride, the salt of hydrochloric acid (= hydrochloric acid)

So if you take one of these remedies, then you will not only feel the effect of magnesium but also the effect of the substance with which your magnesium is associated.
So what additional effects do orotate, citrate or glycinate, for example, entail? And what about the bioavailability of these magnesium supplements?

The best magnesium supplements

Below we introduce you to the most common magnesium preparations and explain their properties. You will then be able to buy the magnesium that is best for you.

1. Magnesium citrate – Against constipation and kidney stones

Magnesium citrate is considered the magnesium compound with the best bioavailability. Although magnesium citrate is absorbed quickly, the question arises as to whether this is actually desirable and useful or whether a slow continuous absorption – as is usual with carbonates – would not make more sense.
In any case, magnesium citrate helps to accelerate intestinal movements, which promotes digestion and leads to a slight bowel movement, so magnesium citrate is often suitable for anyone with somewhat sedate digestion or chronic constipation even from small doses (from 150 mg per day).
In addition, citrate helps to prevent kidney stones or even dissolve them.

2. Magnesium carbonate – For heartburn

Magnesium carbonate is very commonly sold as a magnesium supplement. Magnesium carbonate is said to have a low bioavailability of only 30 percent, but this may be due to the measurement methods (excretion via the urine) since carbonates are slowly absorbed over hours and not quickly like citrates (see above at 1.).
Since magnesium carbonate has an acid-inhibiting effect, it is suitable for people with heartburn. So if you are taking antacids due to heartburn and now want to take magnesium carbonate, you can reduce the antacids.
Magnesium carbonate only has a laxative effect in higher doses and can therefore be used by people who have either good digestion or already thin stools anyway.
A wonderful source of a particularly easily absorbable and very natural magnesium carbonate comes from the Sea Coral.

3. Magnesium bisglycinate (magnesium chelate) – For better sleep

Magnesium bisglycinate is sometimes simply called magnesium glycinate or chelated magnesium or magnesium chelate.
Magnesium bisglycinate is an organic magnesium compound, which means that the magnesium here is bound to an amino acid (glycine). The amino acid protects the sensitive mucous membranes in the digestive tract from irritation by the magnesium – which can lead to stomach pressure or other complaints with other magnesium preparations, so that the magnesium bisglycinate is considered particularly well tolerated.
to compete with other minerals for absorption into the bloodstream. Nor can the chelated magnesium be bound by so-called anti-nutrients (e.B. phytic acid).
Glycine also has interesting effects in the central nervous system. There, glycine provides a calming and relaxing effect through its influence on the N-methyl-D-aspartate and glycine receptors. Magnesium bisglycinate thus brings relaxation and better sleep into your life.
In two human clinical trials, 3 grams of glycine taken at bedtime have been shown to improve sleep and reduce daytime sleepiness. Since a high-quality magnesium bisglycinate capsule contains about 800 to 900 mg of glycine, you take three capsules about half an hour before you go to sleep.

4. Magnesium orotate – For the cardiovascular system

Magnesium orotate has a very good effect on the cardiovascular system. Orotate is the salt of orotic acid, which, among other things, can boost energy production in the heart.
Magnesium orotate has been prescribed as a cardiovascular agent in Russia since the 1970s. Various studies now prove this tradition more than right, as magnesium orotate can improve exercise tolerance and vascular functions in patients with coronary vascular diseases. In addition, magnesium orotate increases the survival rate in people with heart failure, improves their quality of life and makes their symptoms weaker.
It is ideal for the heart if the magnesium orotate is taken in combination with potassium. This is because potassium enhances the magnesium effect and improves its absorption into the cell. However, the correct doses of magnesium and potassium should be discussed with a cardiologist.

5. Magnesium sulphate – The laxative

Magnesium sulphate, known as Epsom salt, is a powerful laxative and is therefore often recommended for fasting, but is not suitable for daily magnesium supplementation.
Conversely, magnesium sulphate, dissolved in ampoule form and administered intravenously, has the highest absorption rate and is therefore preferred in internal medicine or emergency medicine over all other compounds.

6. Magnesium oxide – For constipation and as antacids

Magnesium oxide is one of the most common forms of magnesium sold in pharmacies.
Magnesium oxide is also used for constipation or as antacids (for acid neutralization in the stomach). Otherwise, this magnesium compound has no special advantages.

7. Magnesium malate – Cheers up and relieves pain

Magnesium malate is an interesting option for people who are always tired and exhausted. Malates are the salts of malic acid and this in turn is a vitalizing component of enzymes that play a key role in ATP synthesis and thus in the energy production in our cells. Since the combination of magnesium and malic acid can be easily broken down, magnesium malate is very soluble and very well bioavailable.
Dr. G.E. Abraham also once hypothesized that fibromyalgia was the result of a disruption of cell metabolism. ATP production is too low here and would therefore lead to chronic fatigue. Furthermore, too high a level of organic acids would build-up, which could then lead to diffuse muscle pain.
According to Abraham, magnesium malate supplementation now provides magnesium for acetyl-CoA synthesis (an intermediate in the supply of energy in the cell), and malic acid promotes malate dehydrogenase activity, which in turn reduces the acid load. Fatigue is combated and pain is alleviated.
Abraham’s oral study of 300 to 600 mg of magnesium and 1200 to 2400 mg of malate daily for 6 months showed clear relief of fibromyalgia symptoms. Of course, further measures should be implemented for fibromyalgia.
Magnesium malate consists of 15.5 percent magnesium and 84.5 percent malate.

8. Magnesium chloride – also available for external use

Magnesium chloride is often available from local mines. It is usually obtained as a powder, which is stirred into water and drunk. Those who suffer from constipation can use this form of magnesium for relief, as magnesium chloride has a slightly laxative effect or strong – depending on the dosage. In any case, start with very small doses (100 mg).
Foot baths can also be carried out with magnesium chloride (100 g per foot bath is sufficient). Due to these external applications, magnesium chloride can be bought in large buckets.

Magnesium chloride is also available in liquid form, often referred to as magnesium oil because it feels oily on the skin. However, an oil film is not created. You can apply the “oil” diluted or undiluted to the skin, for example for cracked and dry skin, pain, cramps, etc. After an exposure time of 20 minutes, wash it off.

Magnesium chloride can burn on sensitive skin. Therefore, test it carefully first. Magnesium oil can also be used for foot baths (25 ml per foot bath).

It is often said that magnesium can be absorbed through the skin, i.e. also through a foot or full baths. However, it is not clear to what extent this is possible. We would therefore recommend not only relying on external applications when it comes to magnesium supply but also always taking magnesium internally.

9. Magnesium from plants

If you want to take an all-around holistic and as little processed magnesium as possible, then preparations that have been obtained from magnesium-rich plants are recommended. Such a plant is the so-called sea lettuce, which is also available in certified organic form, which is generally not the case with other magnesium preparations.

Only three capsules with an extract of sea lettuce provide over 330 mg of natural magnesium compounds. The magnesium from sea lettuce is said to be as bioavailable as magnesium citrate or chelate.

Since sea lettuce is a seaweed, it also contains iodine – 135 μg per daily dose, which is already more than half of the daily requirement (the daily requirement of iodine is given as 180 to 200 μg for adults). So if you still need iodine anyway, you are well served with the sea lettuce. On the other hand, if you have to / want to avoid iodine, you should resort to another magnesium preparation.

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