In a recent article I gave you 8 ways topping up on Magnesium levels can literally change your life. Magnesium is a co-factor in over 300 functions in the body and has been known to regulate blood sugar, boost energy, improve sleep quality and strengthen bones. A deficiency can lead to serious ailments such as IBS, depression, hypertension as well as kidney stones and high cholesterol. Yet an alarming percentage of the population are not meeting their daily requirement of this essential nutrient and are unaware of the correlation between many of their symptoms and magnesium deficiency.
If you’re feeling low on magnesium, I recommend implementing a holistic approach and upping your intake of magnesium rich raw foods as the best and first place to start.
Here are 10 Whole Foods that are Rich in Magnesium:
1. Dark Leafy Greens
Dark leafy greens like kale, swiss chard, collards and spinach are rich in magnesium and are great served raw in salads, smoothies as well as juiced. Check out my protein rich green smoothie for some ideas on how to incorporate more greens into your life. Kale chips are another favorite way to up my intake of dark leafy greens!
Avocado has approximately 58 mg of Magnesium in an average sized fruit. I love to add avocado to nori rolls and wraps, but it’s just as great served sliced and topped with lemon juice or made into a delicious guacamole!
3. Raw Cacao
Cacao is a great source of magnesium. In powder form it is perfect for smoothies and the nibs can be snacked on straight, added to trail mix and are perfect for raw desserts. I personally have to minimize my intake of cacao because I find it to be quite stimulating, so I eat it in moderation only on occasion. One recipe I love is this raw chocolate mousse recipe made with ginger, rose and avocado or the raw maca chocolate truffles and this raw chocolate chip cookie dough recipe.
Bananas are mostly known as a rich source of potassium but they also have about 10% of the daily recommended value of magnesium. Bananas constitute quite a large portion of my daily diet. I love eating them in smoothies or on their own. Living here in Hawaii, I love exploring all the many varieties of bananas that are grown here.
5. Coconut Water
Like bananas, Coconut water is a great source of both potassium and magnesium as well as other electrolytes. Just like everything else, fresh is best. I personally don’t recommend drinking any canned or bottled coconut water that usually have preservatives. If I can’t have fresh coconut water, I usually just opt for water instead.
6. Fresh Corn
Yellow Corn has approximately 210 mg of Magnesium in just one cup. I’ll be posting an amazing yellow corn salsa recipe soon!
7. Chia Seeds
Just one ounce of Chia Seeds has 95 mg of Magnesium. These seeds are great additions to smoothie bowls and salad dressings. Beverages like Mamma Chia and GT’s Kombucha also include hydrated chia in them for grab and go goodness. Also be sure to check out this great recipe for orange chia see pudding.
8. Pumpkin Seeds
A quarter cup of pumpkin seeds gives you almost half of your daily requirement for magnesium. They are also a rich source of phosphorus, tryptophan and manganese and are a great source of essential fatty acids. I love these raw homemade pumpkin seed pumpkin crackers as well as these raw pumpkin seed cookies!
9. Sesame Seeds
Sesame seeds are a great source of magnesium as well as protein, iron and calcium. Did you know that ounce for ounce, sesame has about 4 times more calcium than milk! I personally love tahini, which is essentially ground sesame seeds. I use raw organic tahini almost daily and love using it as a whole fat in my salad dressings including this raw cilantro orange salad dressing.
Almonds are a great source of magnesium. About a quarter cup of almonds provides about 15% of your daily magnesium requirement. Almonds help reduce “bad” cholesterol and help reduce risk of heart disease. When it comes to nuts and seeds though, more is not always betters. These foods are high in fats, and so keeping them to a healthy portion (1-3 ounces a day) is optimal. Because they’re so delicious, it’s easy to overeat them and then over consume fats as well. I love using almonds in my raw vegan dairy recipes that I just released in my ebook “Your Essential Guide to Raw Vegan Dairy Alternatives“. You can also see how I use almonds to make a simple almond milk in under 5 minutes.
A few other foods that are a great source of magnesium include dates, figs as well as parsley. Check out this strawberry fig jam recipe for another magnesium rich snack!
Also check out our Mega Magnesium Smoothie for a delicious boost of magnesium in green smoothie form!
Just as important as eating foods high in magnesium it is equally important to remember to limit things that deplete magnesium levels like:
- Refined sugar
- Calcium supplements
- Pharmaceuticals and medications like diuretics, insulin, antibiotics, birth control pills and cortisone can cause magnesium depletion.
- Stress can also deplete magnesium levels, so it’s just as important to practice meditation and yoga or whatever relaxation practices feel the best for you.
If you are post menopausal and you’ve experienced one or more of the magnesium deficiency symptoms described in this article, it’s worth visiting with your holistic doctor to check in about your magnesium levels.
Aloha from the Big Island of Hawaii!