Magnesium: The Mighty Mineral You May Be Missing

by The Puritan's Pride Editorial Team

You’ve probably wondered if you’re getting enough calcium or Vitamin D, but we’re guessing that you don’t pay much (if any) attention to magnesium. Here are a few reasons to keep this mighty mineral on your nutritional radar.

Magnesium and Bone Health

When it comes to bone health, calcium isn’t the only player in town; in fact, magnesium serves as calcium’s trusty sidekick. Magnesium supports bone health by helping to regulate calcium transport between cells, and it also plays an essential role in bone mineralization.* At least half of the body’s magnesium is combined in the bones with calcium and phosphorus. For convenience, many individuals who supplement with calcium to support bone health prefer a supplement that includes both calcium and magnesium.*

When it comes to bone health, calcium isn’t the only player in town; in fact, magnesium serves as calcium’s trusty sidekick.

Other Magnesium Benefits

Though it’s probably best known for its role in bone health, there are plenty more reasons to get excited about the benefits of this major mineral.*

  • Magnesium works with adenosine triphosphate (ATP) on a cellular level to release the energy needed for more than 300 enzymatic reactions in the body.*
  • A study found that higher dietary magnesium intake was positively associated with sugar and glucose metabolism.*
  • Magnesium supports muscle health by playing a vital role in muscle contractions.*
  • For women, magnesium levels in the body have been positively associated with menstrual health.*
  • Magnesium is involved in protein formation and nerve impulses.*

How Much Magnesium Do You Need?

The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey suggests that the diets of many Americans do not provide the recommended amounts of magnesium. Older adults may have lower dietary intakes of magnesium than younger adults, which is of particular concern as magnesium absorption actually decreases in older adults.

Life StageAgeMales (mg/day) Females (mg/day)
Infants0-6 months30*30*
Infants7-12 months75*75*
Children1-3 years8080
Children4-8 years130130
Children9-13 years240240
Adolescents14-18 years410310
Adults19-30 years400310
Adults31 years and older420320

(Food and Nutrition Board, Institute of Medicine).

Note that women who are pregnant or breast feeding require different magnesium intakes.

*Adequate Intake (AI)

Food Sources of Magnesium

Raw almonds (80 mg/serving) and spinach (78 mg per serving) are considered excellent sources of dietary magnesium.

Peanuts, soy milk, black beans, peanut butter, pumpkin seeds, avocado, raw cashews, edamame, whole wheat bread, and brown rice are also good sources of magnesium.

We have more good news: another surprising source of magnesium is chocolate! According to the USDA, a typical serving of milk chocolate (44 g) may provide up to 8% of the Daily Reference Intake USRDA (26.4 mg) for magnesium. In contrast, the same serving size of dark chocolate may provide 15% (51 mg) of magnesium per serving (USDA Nutrient Database, 2001). As if we needed a reason to eat chocolate!

Magnesium Supplements

The three most common forms of magnesium used in magnesium supplements are magnesium oxide, magnesium aspartate, and magnesium citrate. Magnesium citrate is the preferred form of supplemental magnesium, due to its quick absorption in the body and high bioavailability.

Here are a few options that are popular among Puritan’s Pride customers.

Magnesium Tablets

Calcium-Magnesium Combination Products

Additional Product Forms