By now, you’re probably aware that magnesium is an important nutrient to get into your diet. Thanks to modern soil, which is depleted of its natural magnesium content, this can be a pretty difficult task. In fact, according to Wellness Mama, some studies even suggest that up to 90 percent of modern humans may be magnesium deficient.
Magnesium is important for numerous aspects of health. Magnesium deficiencies can be linked to insomnia, muscle twitches, PMS, stress, depression and poor heart health — not to mention poor absorption of the bone-fortifying mineral calcium. If you suspect you may be low on magnesium, here are five magnesium-packed foods that are easy to sneak into your diet every day.
Spinach is a great veggie to include in your meals whenever possible. Magnesium isn’t the only nutrient it’s rich in — leafy greens like spinach boast tons of fiber, folate, potassium and vitamins A, C, E and K. Spinach contains 79mg of magnesium per 100 grams, according to the USDA, which makes it a fantastic way to get some extra servings of this important nutrient.
Get spinach into your diet seamlessly by adding it to your smoothies, putting it in sandwiches, stirring it into pastas and sprinkling it over salads. You probably won’t notice any differences in the flavor profile of your meals, but they’ll be even more nutritious.
You know how many menstruating people crave chocolate right before their periods? Many nutritionists speculate that this is because the hormonal cycle naturally causes magnesium deficiency right before menstruation — and, at 43mg of magnesium per 100 grams, chocolate is a rich source of magnesium.
Though chocolate is great for getting a little extra magnesium, be sure to choose a healthy source of cocoa. Raw cacao powder is probably your best bet, but you can also turn to dark chocolate—the higher the cocoa percentage, the better.
Pumpkin seeds are another delicious and nutritious source of magnesium. In fact, these seeds contain a whopping 262mg per 100 grams. You can obviously buy pumpkin seeds pre-packaged, but it’s also possible to get them from a fresh, whole pumpkin. Just scoop out the seeds, wash them and then toast them in the oven with some cinnamon and salt to your desired level of browning.
Once your seeds have been prepared, it’ll be easy to sneak them into all manner of healthy foods. Grind them into smoothies, add them to desserts or sprinkle them atop some homemade pizza.
No fruit is more ubiquitous these days than the avocado. Avocados pair well with so many different foods, from sweet potatoes to eggs to rice and beans. As a bonus, avocados are a fantastic source of healthy fats. They contain 29 mgs of magnesium per 100 grams so feel free to load up on avos whenever you feel like it.
Whole grains are known for their magnesium content, and few whole-grain products are as healthy as brown rice. It’s gluten-free, so it’s on the table even for those with gluten sensitivities. Plus, it’s rich in fiber and protein, goes well with almost any meal, and can be bought relatively affordably. It contains 43mg of magnesium per each 100 gram serving.
Incorporate some brown rice into a few dinners each week to boost the magnesium content of your meals.