Magnesium is a mineral that plays a part in several functions of the body. It is essential for the metabolism of calcium, vitamin C, phosphorous, sodium, and potassium. It also serves a role in the functioning of nerves and muscles and signals the muscles to relax and contract.
Sources: Magnesium is often a component of multi-vitamins and can also be found as a stand-alone supplement. However, on its own, it may cause diarrhea and is best when taken with vitamin A, calcium, and phosphorous.
It may also be found in Spinach, Peanut Butter, Whole-Wheat Bread, and Lima Beans.
Intake: Deficiencies in Magnesium are rare. Adults should take anywhere between 250-500 mg per day. For women, recommendations can range from 300-355 mg day. This amount does not necessarily need to change because of pregnancy or breast-feeding.
In most cases, consuming too much Magnesium from food is not harmful. It should be noted that taking in large amounts over time can be toxic if the kidney function is impaired or calcium and phosphorous intakes are high.
Magnesium intakes should be increased for those who consume large amounts of alcohol, exercise vigorously to the point of exhaustion, or women that take estrogen or are on the pill.