How You Could Be Depleting Your Body’s Magnesium Levels

Magnesium isn’t precisely horny. It’s not like protein or fiber and even vitamin C—however that doesn’t make it any much less important.

“Magnesium is accountable for over 300 processes within the human physique,” says useful medication physician Kien Vuu, MD. Practically each organ system requires magnesium to perform at an optimum stage, so it’s significantly troubling that researchers estimate that roughly 75 p.c of the U.S. inhabitants is poor in magnesium.

And that’s not the top. Vuu says our magnesium ranges have a tendency to say no as we age, a truth made worse by the truth that magnesium deficiency is tough to diagnose by way of testing as a result of most of it exists in cells and bones. “Diagnostic assessments solely check for the magnesium within the serum, which solely makes up about 0.3 p.c of the entire physique magnesium. Particular micronutrient testing for magnesium is required for correct outcomes.”

Useful medication physician Mark Hyman, MD not too long ago shared that, along with the truth that many people do not get sufficient magnesium in our every day diets, there are a couple of methods we may very well be unknowingly depleting what little magnesium shops we do have. “A lot of contemporary life conspires to assist us lose what little magnesium we do get in our weight-reduction plan,” Dr. Hyman stated on his Instagram. “Magnesium ranges are decreased by extra alcohol, salt, espresso, phosphoric acid in colas, profuse sweating, extended or intense stress, persistent diarrhea, extreme menstruation, diuretics (water capsules), antibiotics and different medication, and a few intestinal parasites.”

That is priceless recommendation, as a result of it offers us the chance to take motion. The three key ways in which Dr. Hyman recommends we cease unknowingly draining our our bodies of magnesium embody limiting consumption of espresso, cola, salt, sugar, and alcohol⁣; studying the right way to follow lively rest⁣; and checking along with your physician in case your medicine is inflicting magnesium loss. “Many hypertension medication or diuretics trigger lack of magnesium,” Dr. Hyman provides.

To be taught extra concerning the methods we may unknowingly be depeteling our physique’s magnesium ranges and what we will do about it, we tapped a registered dietitian for her knowledgeable intel.

Magnesium malabsorption, which could be brought on by a medical situation or process

In line with Brookell White, MS, RD and MyFitnessPal vitamin guide, that is widespread in folks with a gastrointestinal illness or who’ve had a GI process, as a result of persistent diarrhea and fats malabsorption are widespread signs and might result in magnesium depletion. “Some situations the place that is widespread are Crohn’s illness, celiac illness, persistent irritation of areas of the intestine, and a resection or bypass to the higher area in your gastrointestinal tract,” White says.

Alcohol dependance

Many illnesses brought on by persistent ingesting contribute to the loss or malabsorption of magnesium. “This consists of poor consumption of magnesium, vomiting, diarrhea, points with fats absorption, elevated loss in your urine, and different nutrient deficiencies that additional malabsorption of magnesium,” explains White. And we’re not simply speaking about binge ingesting—in keeping with White, even reasonable alcohol consumption can contribute to magnesium deficiency.

Power stress

Hormones are sometimes launched within the physique as a response to emphasize, resulting in a rise of magnesium outdoors our cells. “When this occurs, extra magnesium is excreted in our urine, resulting in extra loss. If that is repeated over time, this will result in decrease ranges of magnesium,” says White. She suggests maintaining a constant exercise routine, prioritizing time to wind down earlier than mattress, and consuming a balanced weight-reduction plan as a technique to fight this.


Whereas we will attempt to be proactive about managing issues like alcohol consumption and stress, this one is a bit trickier. Magnesium absorption from the intestine decreases over time, and this occurs at a quicker charge as we become older. “The kidneys additionally excrete extra as we age, and older adults are discovered to eat much less,” says White. “One other contributing issue could also be on account of medicine. Diuretics, antacids, proton pump inhibitors, and aminoglycoside antibiotics are simply among the drugs that may result in a magnesium deficiency, and lots of of those are sadly extra often prescribed to older populations.”

Once more, Dr. Hyman additionally singles out different causes together with extra salt and occasional, profuse sweating, and menstruation. Along with limiting these triggers and talking with a physician about magnesium deficiency, you can even introduce extra magnesium-rich meals into your weight-reduction plan to up your physique’s magnesium ranges. Keep in mind: It’s not all about slicing and altering—an enormous half is including.

Meals wealthy in magnesium

Magnesium is present in a wide range of meals, particularly those who comprise everybody’s favourite digestive booster, fiber. “These meals embody nuts, leafy inexperienced greens, legumes, and entire grains,” says Dr. Vuu. He calls out spinach, cashews, peanuts, soy milk, and black beans as being excessive within the mineral.

In line with White, a “good supply” particularly refers to a meals that comprises a minimum of 10 p.c of the dietary reference consumption (DRI), a bunch of reference values to find out adequate and inadequate consumption. “Different sources embody dairy, meat and fortified cereals.” Understand that the really useful consumption for adults is 400 mg for males and 360 mg for girls ages 19-30, and 420 mg for males and 320 mg for girls ages 31 and up.

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