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Top 10 Foods Highest in Magnesium



Magnesium is an essential mineral required by the body for maintaining normal muscle and nerve function, keeping a healthy immune system, maintaining heart rhythm, and building strong bones. Magnesium is also involved in at least 300 biochemical reactions in the body. A deficiency in magnesium can lead to muscle spasms, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, anxiety disorders, migraines, osteoporosis, and cerebral infarction. Conversely, consuming too much magnesium typically causes diarrhea as the body attempts to excrete the excess. The current DV for magnesium is 400mg. Below is a list of high magnesium foods, for more, see the lists of high magnesium foods by nutrient density, magnesium rich foods, vegetables high in magnesium, and fruits high in magnesium.

#1: Dark Leafy Greens (Raw Spinach)
Magnesium in 100g1 Cup Raw (30g)1 Cup Cooked (180g)
79mg (20% DV)24mg (6% DV)157mg (39% DV)
Other Greens High in Magnesium (%DV per cup cooked): Swiss Chard (38%), and Kale (19%). Click to see complete nutrition facts.



#2: Nuts and Seeds (Squash and Pumpkin Seeds)
Magnesium in 100g1/2 Cup (113g)1 Ounce (28g)
534mg (134% DV)606mg (152% DV)150mg (37% DV)
Other Nuts and Seeds High in Magnesium (%DV per 1/2 cup): Sesame Seeds (63%), Brazil Nuts (63%), Almonds (48%), Cashews (44% DV), Pine nuts (43%), Mixed Nuts (39%), and Peanuts (31%), Pecans (17%), Walnuts (16%). Click to see complete nutrition facts.


#3: Fish (Mackerel)
Magnesium in 100gPer 3oz Fillet (85g)
97mg (24% DV)82mg (21% DV)
Other Fish High in Magnesium (%DV per 3oz fillet (85g)): Pollock (18% DV), Turbot (14% DV), Tuna (14% DV), and most other fish at an average of 8% DV. Click to see complete nutrition facts.


#4: Beans and Lentils (Soy Beans)
Magnesium in 100g1 Cup Cooked (172g)
86mg (22% DV)148mg (37% DV)
Other Beans and Lentils High in Magnesium (%DV per cup cooked): White Beans (28%), French Beans (25%), Black-eyed Peas (23%), Kidney Beans (21%), Chickpeas (Garbanzo) (20%), Lentils (18%), Pinto Beans (16%), . Click to see complete nutrition facts.


#5: Whole Grains (Brown Rice)
Magnesium in 100g1 Cup Cooked (195g)
44mg (11% DV)86mg (21% DV)
Other Whole Grains High in Magnesium (%DV per cup cooked): Quinoa (30%), Millet (19%), Bulgur (15%), Buckwheat (13%), Wild Rice (13%), Whole Wheat Pasta (11%), Barley (9%), Oats (7%). Click to see complete nutrition facts.


#6: Avocados
Magnesium in 100g1 Avocado (201g)1/2 Cup Pureed (115g)
29mg (7% DV)58mg (15% DV)33mg (9% DV)
An average avocado provides 322 calories, half a cup pureed contains 184 calories. Click to see complete nutrition facts.


#7: Low-Fat Dairy (Plain Non Fat Yogurt)
Magnesium in 100g1 Cup (245g)
19mg (5% DV)47mg (12% DV)
Other Dairy Foods High in Magnesium (%DV per 100g): Goat Cheese (Hard) (14% DV), Nonfat Chocolate Yogurt (10% DV) and Nonfat Mozzarella (8%). Click to see complete nutrition facts.


#8: Bananas
Magnesium in 100g1 Medium (118g)1 Cup Slices (150g)
27mg (7% DV)32mg (8% DV)41mg (10% DV)
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


#9: Dried Fruit (Figs)
Magnesium in 100g1/2 Cup (75g)1 Fig (8g)
68mg (17% DV)51mg (13% DV)5mg (1% DV)
Other Dried Fruit High in Magnesium (%DV per 1/2 cup): Prunes (11%), Apricots (10%), Dates (8%), and Raisins (7%). Click to see complete nutrition facts.


#10: Dark Chocolate
Magnesium in 100g1 Square (29g)1 Cup Grated (132g)
327mg (82% DV)95mg (24% DV)432mg (108% DV)
1 square of dark chocolate provides 145 calories. Click to see complete nutrition facts.




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The Top 10 High Magnesium Foods by Nutrient Density (Magnesium per Gram)
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#1: Rice Bran 781mg (195% DV) per 100 grams922mg (230% DV) per cup (118 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Rice Bran
#2: Dried Herbs and Spices (Coriander, Dill, Sage Basil) 694mg (174% DV) per 100 grams14mg (3% DV) per tablespoon (2 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Dried Herbs
#3: Pumpkin & Squash Seeds 535mg (134% DV) per 100 grams738mg (185% DV) per cup (138 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Pumpkin & Squash Seeds
#4: Cocoa Powder 499mg (125% DV) per 100 grams25mg (6% DV) per tablespoon (5 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Cocoa Powder
#5: Flaxseeds 392mg (98% DV) per 100 grams39mg (10% DV) per tbsp (10 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Flaxseeds
#6: Brazil Nuts 376mg (94% DV) per 100 grams500mg (125% DV) per cup (133 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Brazil Nuts
#7: Tahini (Sesame Seed Paste) 353mg (88% DV) per 100 grams49mg (12% DV) per tablespoon (14 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Tahini
#8: Sunflower Seeds 346mg (87% DV) per 100 grams14mg (3% DV) per tablespoon (4 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Sunflower Seeds
#9: Wheat Germ 313mg (78% DV) per 100 grams360mg (90% DV) per cup (115 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Wheat Germ
#10: Molasses 242mg (61% DV) per 100 grams48mg (12% DV) per tablespoon (20 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Molasses

Other Magnesium Rich Foods
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Peanut Butter154mg (39% DV) per 100 gram serving397mg (99% DV) per cup (258 grams)49mg (12% DV) in two tablespoons (32 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Smooth Peanut Butter
Espresso80mg (20% DV) per 100 gram serving96mg (24% DV) in half a cup (4fl/oz ~120 grams)24mg (6% DV) in a fluid ounce (fl/oz) (56 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Espresso
Coffee (Caffeinated or Decaf)3mg (1% DV) per 100 gram serving7mg (2% DV) in one cup (8fl/oz, 237 grams)1mg (0% DV) in a fluid ounce (fl/oz) (30 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Coffee
Whole Wheat Bread82mg (21% DV) per 100 gram serving23mg (6% DV) per slice (28 grams)46mg (12% DV) in two slices (56 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Whole Wheat Bread
Whole Milk10mg (3% DV) per 100 gram serving98mg (24% DV) per quart (976 grams)24mg (6% DV) per cup (244 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Whole Milk
Seaweed (Spirulina)195mg (49% DV) per 100 gram serving218mg (55% DV) per cup (112 grams)14mg (3% DV) per tablespoon (7 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Seaweed (Spirulina)
Vegetarian Baked Beans27mg (7% DV) per 100 gram serving69mg (17% DV) per cup (254 grams)34mg (9% DV) in half a cup (127 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Vegetarian Baked Beans
Corn Meal (White or Yellow)127mg (32% DV) per 100 gram serving211mg (53% DV) per cup (166 grams)106mg (26% DV) per half cup (83 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Corn

Vegetables High in Magnesium
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Scotch (Curly) Kale 88mg (22% DV) per 100 gram serving59mg (15% DV) per cup chopped (67 grams)29mg (7.5% DV) per (1/2) cup chopped (33.5 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Scotch Kale
Beet Greens70mg (18% DV) per 100 gram serving27mg (7% DV) per cup (38 grams)22mg (6% DV) per leaf (32 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Beet Greens
Globe Artichoke60mg (15% DV) per 100 gram serving77mg (19% DV) per medium artichoke (128 grams)97mg (24% DV) per large artichoke (162 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Artichokes
Okra57mg (14% DV) per 100 gram serving28mg (7% DV) per (1/2) cup (50 grams)54mg (14% DV) per 8 pods (95 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Okra
Arugula (Rocket)47mg (12% DV) per 100 gram serving9mg (2% DV) per cup (20 grams)1mg (0% DV) per leaf (2 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Arugula
Sweet Corn37mg (9% DV) per 100 gram serving57mg (14% DV) per cup (154 grams)33mg (8% DV) per medium ear (90 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Sweet Corn
Butternut Squash34mg (9% DV) per 100 gram serving48mg (12% DV) per cup cubed (140 grams)24mg (6% DV) per (1/2) cup cubed (70 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Butternut Squash
Savoy Cabbage28mg (7% DV) per 100 gram serving20mg (5% DV) per cup shredded (70 grams)10mg (2.5% DV) per (1/2) cup shredded (35 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Savoy Cabbage
Peas24mg (6% DV) per 100 gram serving15mg (4% DV) per cup whole peas (63 grams)8mg (2% DV) per 10 pea pods (34 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Peas
Cucumber (With Peel)13mg (3% DV) per 100 gram serving14mg (4% DV) per cup sliced (104 grams)39mg (10% DV) per cucumber (301 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Cucumber
Baked Potato (With Skin)30mg (8% DV) per 100 gram serving90mg (22% DV) in a large potato (299 grams)52mg (13% DV) per medium sized potato (173 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Russet Potatoes

Fruits High in Magnesium
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Blackberries20mg (5% DV) per 100 gram serving29mg (7% DV) per cup (144 grams)24mg (3.5% DV) per (1/2) cup (72 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Blackberries
Raspberries22mg (6% DV) per 100 gram serving27mg (7% DV) per cup (123 grams)4mg (1% DV) per 10 raspberries (19 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Raspberries
Strawberries13mg (3% DV) per 100 gram serving19mg (5% DV) per cup whole (144 grams)9mg (2% DV) per 6 medium strawberries (72 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Strawberries
Jackfruit37mg (9% DV) per 100 gram serving61mg (15% DV) per cup sliced (165 grams)30mg (7.5% DV) per (1/2) cup sliced (82.5 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Jackfruit
Watermelon10mg (3% DV) per 100 gram serving15mg (4% DV) per cup diced (152 grams)29mg (7% DV) per wedge (approx 1/16 melon, 286 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Watermelon
Guava22mg (6% DV) per 100 gram serving36mg (9% DV) per cup (165 grams)12mg (3% DV) per fruit without waste (55 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Guava
Plantain37mg (9% DV) per 100 gram serving55mg (14% DV) per cup sliced (148 grams)66mg (17% DV) per medium fruit (179 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Plantain
Kiwi Fruit17mg (4% DV) per 100 gram serving30mg (8% DV) per cup (177 grams)13mg (3% DV) per medium fruit without skin (76 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Kiwi Fruit
Passion Fruit29mg (7% DV) per 100 gram serving68mg (17% DV) per cup (236 grams)5mg (1% DV) per fruit without waste (18 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Passion Fruit
Grapefruit (Pink/Red/White)8mg (2% DV) per 100 gram serving18mg (5% DV) per cup sections with juice (230 grams)10mg (3% DV) per (1/2) medium fruit (128 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Grapefruit

▼ Health Benefits of Magnesium
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  • Regulation of Blood Pressure - Diets high in fruits and vegetables provide both magnesium and potassium which are consistently associated with reduced blood pressure.3-5
  • Reduced Risk of Type II Diabetes - Magnesium is involved in carbohydrate metabolism and the bodies use of insulin.6 Studies show that individuals with type II diabetes have low levels of magnesium in their blood.7 Correcting this lack of magnesium may help increase sensitivity to insulin and prevent type II diabetes.8
  • Reduced Risk of Heart Attack and other Cardiovascular Diseases - Because magnesium is associated with regulation of blood pressure and lower risk of diabetes, it follows that it also reduces risk of cardiovascular disease.9 Elevated levels of magnesium in the blood has been associated with reduced risk of heart attack and stroke.10-12
  • Reduced Risk of Osteoporosis - Magnesium plays a role in calcium metabolism and hormones which regulate calcium and may help to protect against osteoporosis.7,13 Several studies support that increased magnesium intake increases bone health.7,14
  • Reduced Frequency of Migraine Headaches (*Controversial) - Studies show that individuals who have frequent migraine headaches have lower levels of magnesium than other individuals.15 There is conflicting evidence as to whether increased intake of magnesium will reduce the frequency of migraines.15-18
  • Alleviation of Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) - Studies suggest that consuming higher amounts of magnesium, perhaps in conjunction with vitamin B6, helps to alleviate bloating, insomnia, leg swelling, weight gain, breast tenderness, and other symptoms associated with PMS.19

▼ Factors which Affect Magnesium Absorption
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  • Fermentable carbohydrates like those found in grains, dairy, and fruit enhance the absorption of mangesium.37
  • Foods with protein enhance the absorption of magnesium and calcium.38
  • Eating foods high in insoluble fiber, or taking supplemental dietary fiber, is likely to hinder magnesium absorption.37
  • Phytates, found in vegetables, grains, seeds, and nuts may slightly hinder magnesium absorption, however, the soluble fiber, and fermentable carbohydrates found in these foods likely counteracts this effect, making most plant foods a great source of magnesium.37
  • Foods high in oxalates, such as spinach, leafy greens, nuts, tea, coffee and cacao also reduce magnesium absorption. Cooking reduces oxalic acid, so cooking spinach and other greens is better than eating them raw (in terms of magnesium absorption).35

▼ High Risk Groups for a Magnesium Deficiency
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  • Long distance athletes - People who exercise over long distances lose electrolytes via sweat and need to replenish their sodium, potassium, magnesium, and phosphorus levels.
  • Dehydration - People who consume excess alcohol, or suffer diarrhea, or can be otherwise dehydrated need to replenish their sodium, potassium, magnesium, and phosphorus levels.
  • People with Gastrointestinal Disorders - Most magnesium is absorbed through the colon so people with gastrointestinal disorders like Crohn's disease are at high risk for a magnesium deficiency.19,20
  • People with Poor Functioning Kidneys - The kidneys should be able to regulate magnesium in the blood, excreting less when stores are low, however, excessive loss of magnesium through urine can occur to people on specific medications, poorly managed diabetes, and alcoholics.21-29
  • The Elderly - As we age the amount of magnesium we absorb decreases as the amount we excrete increases.7
  • People Consuming high amounts of Fiber - Eating large amounts of fiber has been shown to interfere with the bodies ability to use magnesium. However, more research needs to be done to confirm how much fiber affects magnesium.30,31
  • People on a low protein diet (*Controversial) - Eating less than 30 grams of protein a day may adversely affect magnesium utilization. 32
  • People taking Certain Medications23,25,33,34,36
    • Proton Pump Inhibitors: Prescription PPIs include Nexium (esomeprazole magnesium), Dexilant (dexlansoprazole), Prilosec (omeprazole), Zegerid (omeprazole and sodium bicarbonate), Prevacid (lansoprazole), Protonix (pantoprazole sodium), AcipHex (rabeprazole sodium), Vimovo, Prilosec OTC (omeprazole), Zegerid OTC (omeprazole and sodium bicarbonate), and Prevacid 24HR (lansoprazole)36
    • Diuretics: Lasix, Bumex, Edecrin, and hydrochlorothiazide
    • Antibiotics: Gentamicin, and Amphotericin
    • Anti-neoplastic (Cancer) medication: Cisplatin
    • Zinc Supplements

▼ Recipes High in Magnesium
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▼ Warnings
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  • Nuts, seeds, dark chocolate, and molasses are high calorie foods and should be eaten in moderate amounts by people with a high body mass index.
  • Dark chocolate, spinach, and almonds are high in oxalates which may inhibit some magnesium absorption.35 These foods however, are still good sources of magnesium.
  • Brazil nuts are very high in selenium. Excess selenium can lead to diarrhea, bad breath, and even hair loss.

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▼ References
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  2. Office Of Dietary Supplements Fact Sheet
  3. Appel LJ. Nonpharmacologic therapies that reduce blood pressure: A fresh perspective. Clin Cardiol 1999;22:1111-5.
  4. Simopoulos AP. The nutritional aspects of hypertension. Compr Ther 1999;25:95-100.
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  35. Torsten Bohn, Lena Davidsson*, Thomas Walczyk and Richard F. Hurrel Fractional magnesium absorption is signi?cantly lower in human subjects from a meal served with an oxalate-rich vegetable, spinach, as compared with a meal served with kale, a vegetable with a low oxalate content. Laboratory for Human Nutrition, Institute of Food Science and Nutrition, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich, Switzerland (Received 27 May 2003 – Revised 7 November 2003 – Accepted 28 November 2003
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