Magnesium, A Mighty Mineral by Lisa Johnson, RD

Magnesium shines as one of the body’s most essential minerals. It cofactors over 300 bodily functions to aid with bone health, blood pressure regulation, insulin sensitivity, heart health, colon health, and brain health. Deficiencies have been linked with depression as well as attention deficit disorder and sadly over 60% of the US population are deficient in this vital electrolyte.

A healthy intake level is 400mg daily. Endurance athletes may need considerably more. It is important not to take high supplemental doses as that may cause an imbalance with calcium or other mineral status. Still, most people do not consume a diet high in magnesium rich foods.

Here the top 10 magnesium-rich foods based on the USDA nutrition data

1. Pumpkin seeds, dried — 1/4 cup: 180 mg (46 percent DV)

2. Spinach, cooked — 1 cup: 157 mg (39 percent DV)

3. Swiss chard, cooked — 1 cup: 150 mg (38 percent DV)

4. Dark Chocolate — 1 square: 95 mg (24 percent DV)

5. Almonds — 1 ounce: 75 mg (19 percent DV) 6. Black beans — 1/2 cup: 60 mg (15 percent DV) 7. Avocado — 1 medium: 58 mg (15 percent DV)

8. Figs, dried — 1/2 cup: 50 mg (13 percent DV)

9. Yogurt or kefir — 1 cup: 46.5 mg (12 percent DV)

10.Banana — 1 medium: 32 mg (8 percent DV)

Other really good sources include chia seeds and sesame seeds which comprise tahini found in hummus, as well as fish. Thankfully, many magnesium-rich foods are also high in calcium promoting balance and strong bones. Try some of these easy tips to increase magnesium in your diet.

Add spinach, banana, and almond butter to you smoothie

Use dark leafy greens in salad instead of romaine or iceberg

Serve fish over wilted spinach instead of rice or pasta

Snack on nuts and seeds (Super Seedz are great pumpkin seeds)

Snack on hummus or guacamole with cut vegetables

Replace mayo with yogurt in tuna or salmon salad

Indulge with healthy desserts using cocoa, nuts, avocado, figs and bananas

Enjoy these recipes for black bean brownies and avocado pudding. Eating healthy never tasted so good! Your body and your brain will thank you!

Amazing Flour-Less Brownies

Chocolate Avocado Pudding

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