The Power of magnesium
Few people are aware of the enormous role magnesium plays in our health: It’s important to nearly every function and tissue in the body, supports a healthy immune system, prevents inflammation associated with certain cancers, boosts heart health, and could even cut your risk for a heart attack.
A Harvard University study found that high daily magnesium intake reduced the risk of developing diabetes by 33 percent; still other studies found that the mineral helps ward off depression and migraines.
Though supplements are available, most experts say it’s preferable to get magnesium naturally from your diet. Here are eight foods that can help.
1 Dark Leafy Greens
In the nutrition world, dark leafy greens play the role of the ultimate superfood, offering up crucial vitamins and minerals as well as a host of health benefits. Choose raw or cooked baby spinach, collard greens, kale, or Swiss chard and you’ll be stocking your body with magnesium for very few calories.ublished: 06/24/15.
2 Nuts and Seeds
Just a half cup of pumpkin seeds provides nearly 100 percent of the daily requirement for magnesium. Other nuts and seeds high in magnesium include almonds, sunflower seeds, Brazil nuts, cashews, pine nuts, flaxseed, and pecans. Include your favorite nuts in a healthy homemade trail mix; it makes the perfect afternoon snack to keep your energy up and hunger levels down.
In addition to being great sources of vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids, fish like mackerel, wild salmon, halibut, and tuna will add more magnesium to your menu. Make it a goal to have fish for dinner at least once a week; this tangy Salmon Salad is delicious, easy, and perfect for spring.
Soybeans are a nutrient-rich legume carrying a high amount of fiber, vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. Snack on a half-cup serving of dry roasted soybeans, which provides nearly half the necessary magnesium for the day, or add shelled soybeans (edamame) to your shopping list. Other legumes rich in magnesium includeblack beans, kidney beans, white beans, chickpeas, black-eyed peas, and lentils.
Loaded with multivitamins, heart-healthy nutrients, and disease-thwarting chemical compounds, avocados are one of the most nutritious and versatile produce picks around. Add one sliced avocado to your salad or sandwich at lunch, and you’ll easily consume 15 percent of the recommended daily amount of magnesium.
Bananas may be better known for being rich in heart-healthy and bone-strengthening potassium, but a medium-sized banana also provides 32 milligrams of magnesium, along with vitamin C and fiber. At only about 100 calories, this is a foolproof fruit to pop in your bag for a portable breakfast or an easy-on-the-go snack. Of course, many other fruits can add magnesium to your diet, including strawberries, blackberries, grapefruit, and figs.
7 Dark Chocolate
As if you needed another reason to indulge in rich dark chocolate, it’s also a magnesium-booster. One square of the sweet stuff provides 24 percent of the daily value of magnesium for only 145 calories, in addition to antioxidants that can help lower blood pressure, improve blood flow, and boost overall heart health. Paired with fresh fruit, dark chocolate makes a decadent and healthy after-dinner dessert
8 Low-Fat Yogurt
Magnesium and calcium make a wonderful health duo, because when you’re getting enough magnesium, this makes it easier for your body to absorb calcium and put it to good use. That’s why almost all milk products are recommended for getting more magnesium; roughly 19 milligrams of the mineral are found in one container of low- or nonfat yogurt, which, along with a fiber-rich fruit, makes an easy breakfast choice.