What Foods Are Highest In Magnesium?

Very good sources of magnesium include grain products, nuts, seeds, legumes, mineral water, green vegetables and dried fruit. But the mineral is also found in dairy products, fish and meat.

Magnesium foods

For a magnesium-rich diet, it can be helpful to know which foods contain a particularly large amount of magnesium. In general, it is important to eat a balanced diet that is as varied as possible . In this way, the body not only gets magnesium, but also all the other important nutrients it needs. The following tables offer a selection of magnesium-rich foods with their respective magnesium content, sorted by food groups.

Cereals, cereal products, pseudocereals & rice

Magnesium in mg per 100 g of food:

  • Wheat bran: 490
  • Amaranth: 308
  • Oatmeal: 280
  • Quinoa: 276
  • Oatmeal: 140
  • Rice, unpolished: 120
  • Wholemeal rusks: 178
  • spelled flour: 114
  • Wholemeal bread with sunflower seeds: 106
  • Mixed rye bread with bran: 86
  • Wholemeal pasta, raw: 53

Fruit & east products

Magnesium in mg per 100 g of food:

  • Figs, dried: 70
  • Dates, dried: 50
  • Apricots, dried: 50
  • Raisins: 41
  • Bananas: 31
  • Blackberries: 30
  • Raspberries: 30
  • Elderberries: 30

Vegetables & Legumes

Magnesium in mg per 100 g of food:

  • Soybeans: 220
  • Lima beans: 207
  • Broad beans: 190
  • Mung beans: 166
  • white beans: 140
  • Lenses: 130
  • Chickpeas: 130
  • Ginger: 130
  • Peas: 118
  • Purslane: 150
  • Mangold: 80
  • Spinach: 58
  • Kohlrabi: 43
  • Garden cress: 40
  • Kale: 30
  • green peas: 30
  • Avocado: 29
  • Artichokes: 26
  • Green beans: 26
  • Beetroot: 25
  • Broccoli: 24
  • Brussels sprouts: 22
  • Potatoes: 20

Nuts & Seeds

Magnesium in mg per 100 g of food:

  • Sunflower seeds: 420
  • Pumpkin seeds: 402
  • Sesame together: 347
  • Poppy seeds: 333
  • Cashews: 270
  • Almonds: 170
  • Peanuts: 163
  • Pistachios: 160
  • Hazelnuts: 150
  • Pecan nuts: 142

Milk, dairy products & milk alternatives

Magnesium in mg per 100 g of food:

  • Mountain cheese: 43
  • Goat cheese (sliced ​​cheese; 50% fat in dry matter): 46
  • Parmesan: 43
  • Leather lady: 40
  • Emmentaler: 31
  • Cheddar: 25
  • Appenzell: 29
  • Gouda: 28
  • Soy milk: 28
  • Feta (40 % Fett i. Tr.): 25
  • Camembert (45 % Fett i. Tr.): 17
  • Buttermilk: 16
  • Yoghurt (1.5% fat content): 14
  • Cow’s milk (3.5% fat content): 12

Meat, Fish & Eggs

Magnesium in mg per 100 g of food:

  • Canned sardines in oil: 205
  • Prawns: 67
  • Carp: 51
  • Zander: 50
  • Turbot: 49
  • Tuna (can; in oil): 28
  • Mackerel: 30
  • Salmon: 29
  • Ground beef: 33
  • Chicken breast fillet: 27
  • Beef tenderloin: 22
  • Pork tenderloin: 22
  • Pork escalope (upper shell): 21
  • Eggs (size M): 12

Luxury foods & confectionery

Magnesium in mg per 100 g of food:

  • Cocoa powder, slightly de-oiled: 414
  • Dark chocolate (more than 80% cocoa content): 230
  • Marzipan: 120

Soft drinks

Magnesium in mg per 100 g of food:

  • Sea Buckthorn Berry Juice: 31
  • Orange juice, freshly squeezed: 12
  • Lemon juice: 10
  • Tomato juice: 9.5
  • natural mineral water: varies depending on the magnesium content

Magnesium in food

The mineral magnesium is essential for the metabolism of the human body. It is involved in many different reactions, including bone formation , carbohydrate metabolism and the formation of proteins . Magnesium also plays a role in the excitability of the heart , blood pressure , muscle tension and the transmission of stimuli in the nervous system . The mineral is also important for growth, energy generation and electrical stability of the cells as well as for cellular calcium transport .

The body cannot produce magnesium itself and loses about 100 milligrams of it every day. In order to avoid a magnesium deficiency, you have to compensate for the loss through your diet. The German Society for Nutrition (DGE) gives the following value for the daily magnesium requirement :

  • Women aged 25 and over: 300 milligrams
  • Men: 350 milligrams
  • Pregnant and lactating women: 310 and 390 milligrams, respectively
  • Young men between 15 and 25 years: 400 milligrams.

There are also other factors that influence magnesium requirements . Anyone who sweats a lot (e.g. during sports or in great heat) excretes more magnesium due to the increased sweating .

Stress also increases the need for magnesium . Because when this happens, the body produces more hormones that promote the release of magnesium into the urine. In addition, stress causes blood vessels to constrict, causing blood pressure to rise. Certain cells release magnesium into the blood to counteract this. The increased magnesium concentration in the blood in turn activates the kidneys. They ensure that the excess of the mineral is quickly released again.

In addition, certain diseases (such as diarrhea or vomiting associated with gastrointestinal problems), as well as alcohol, can increase magnesium excretion . Alcohol abuse, for example, is the most common trigger for a magnesium deficiency.

Which foods contain magnesium?

Magnesium is found in many different foods. In general, plant foods are particularly suitable for a magnesium-rich diet. Grain products, nuts, seeds and legumes are particularly good sources . Since the outer layers of grain in particular contain a lot of the mineral, you should rather use the whole grain variants here.

In addition, natural mineral waters with a magnesium content of at least 50 milligrams per liter as well as green vegetables and dried fruits are good suppliers. Foods from animal sources such as dairy products, meat or fish also contain magnesium. However, their mineral content is lower overall.

Expert tip: “Very calcareous, i.e. very hard tap water also contains a lot of magnesium and calcium and can therefore make a significant contribution to the supply of minerals. But: We often don’t drink tap water pure from the tap, but as tea or coffee. When water is boiled, however, some calcium and magnesium are lost; That’s why coffee machines and kettles calcify so quickly when the water is very hard! During boiling, a large part of the calcium remains in the coffee machine or kettle and does not even get into our bodies.”

On average, the body can only absorb an average of 30-50% of the magnesium that we consume through food. That depends on various factors. Depending on how the food is processed , part of the magnesium is lost, for example.

Especially the blanching of vegetables and the grinding of grain are unfavourable. And if you consume a lot of protein, phosphate, oxalic or phytic acid through food, your absorption of magnesium will be worse . A high-fat diet also contributes : in the intestine, magnesium combines with the free fatty acids. This results in poorly soluble products that the body excretes with the stool. However, a healthy person can usually cover their magnesium requirements through their diet and does not need any dietary supplements.

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Written by Florentina Lewis

Hello! My name is Florentina, and I'm a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist with a background in teaching, recipe development, and coaching. I'm passionate about creating evidence-based content to empower and educate people to live healthier lifestyles. Having been trained in nutrition and holistic wellness, I use a sustainable approach toward health & wellness, using food as medicine to help my clients achieve that balance they are looking for. With my high expertise in nutrition, I can create customized meal plans that fit a specific diet (low-carb, keto, Mediterranean, dairy-free, etc.) and target (losing weight, building muscle mass). I am also a recipe creator and reviewer.

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