Magnesium Rich Foods on  wooden table. Featured / Nutrition

In the United States about 77.9 million (1 out of every 3) adults have high blood pressure.  Heart disease continues to be the leading cause of death worldwide.  But there’s some good news… getting enough magnesium may help keep your blood pressure under control!

People in clinical studies that consumed ~350 mg of supplemental magnesium for 2-3 months have consistently showed improvements in blood pressure as compared with those on a placebo.  This is not surprising given that people who consume high amounts of plant foods containing magnesium also show a decreased risk of heart disease.

Since magnesium supplements are safe and relatively low cost they could pose a practical opportunity to help hypertensive individuals lower their blood pressure in patients with hypertension.  If you’re already consuming 5 servings of fruits and vegetables daily, there is a likelihood that taking a supplement won’t have the same effect.  Other compounds in fruits and vegetables can also help lower your blood pressure, so it’s good to get magnesium from the diet, when possible.

Magnesium has benefits beyond heart health.  Several studies suggest that getting enough magnesium can hmagnesium rich foodselp prevent the onset of osteoporosis, a disease that affects more than 50% of adults over 50 years old.  50-60% of the body’s magnesium is actually stored your bones.  Much like calcium, magnesium helps to keep your bones strong!

Magnesium is commonly found in plant foods such as dark green leafy vegetables, nuts, beans and whole grains.  Side
effects from getting too much magnesium from foods are not common, because the body excretes any excess in the urine.  However, people who take too much magnesium from supplements can experience nausea,
diarrhea and abdominal cramping.  Adults need to get about 320 mg (women) or 420 mg (men) of magnesium daily for good health.  There really is no reason to supplement above 350 mg per day unless advised by your doctor.

Consumers – Check out the NIH fact sheet for consumers on magnesium (click here).

Health professionals – Check out the expert review on magnesium that I co-authored (click here).


  1. Pat Wallace Says: November 22, 2016 at 3:10 pm

    Excellent article. I have had afib for many years and about 3 years ago experienced strange symptoms, including spiking blood pressure and additional afib attacks. I started researching potassium and magnesium and with my doctors permission put myself on magnesium citrate. It took a long time for the magnesium to build up in my body, but when it did, had great results in blood pressure and afib. I continue to take it but in smaller doses. I have become an evangelist for magnesium, especially for people who have elevated bp and afib. Up until this experience, I didn’t know anything about magnesium.

  2. Rossella Mereu Says: December 28, 2016 at 7:17 pm

    I have a question about Magnesium by mouth vs magnesium through the skin
    Thank you!

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