When it comes to regulating muscle and nerve functions, managing blood sugar and blood pressure, as well as bone formation, the mineral substance magnesium plays a role. A magnesium deficiency can lead to various symptoms such as muscle cramps, fatigue, nervousness, and heart arrhythmias. To avoid a deficiency, you can use the above magnesium table for nuts and seeds.
Do You Need More Magnesium In Your Diet?
Although the recommended daily intake of magnesium for adults is around 310 to 420 mg, certain groups of people may have a higher requirement, as indicated by the following list:
- Since magnesium is important for muscle contraction and relaxation, individuals who engage in regular exercise or strenuous physical activities may have an increased need for magnesium.
- During pregnancy and lactation, the body requires additional magnesium to support the growing baby and maintain milk production.
- Older people may have an increased need for magnesium as they often have difficulty absorbing magnesium from their food.
- People with diabetes, heart disease, chronic diarrhea, or alcoholic liver disease may have a higher requirement for magnesium.
- For individuals with celiac disease, Crohn's disease, or other digestive system disorders, it may be more challenging to absorb magnesium from their food.
- Under stress, the body produces more stress hormones, which can increase the excretion of magnesium through the kidneys.
- Certain medications such as diuretics, antibiotics, and cancer drugs can interfere with the body's magnesium absorption and lead to an increased requirement.
Magnesium In Nuts And Seeds
Nuts and seeds have very high amounts of magnesium according to the table. The following list briefly introduces some of them:
- Pumpkin seeds are extremely rich in magnesium. A small portion (20 g) already contains 150 mg of magnesium, which is about 40% of the recommended daily requirement. They are also a high-quality plant protein source, fiber, and healthy fats.
- Cashew nuts are a good protein source in addition to magnesium, and they contain unsaturated fats. A handful of cashew nuts contains about 100mg of magnesium, which is approximately 25% of the daily requirement.
- Almonds are one of the best sources of magnesium among nuts. They are also rich in healthy fats, fiber, and vitamin E. A portion (30 g) contains about 90mg of magnesium, which accounts for about 20% of the daily requirement.
- Sunflower seeds are also rich in magnesium. They are also rich in antioxidants, vitamin E, and healthy fats.
- Pine nuts are another good source of magnesium and also contain healthy fats and proteins.
- Walnuts contain not only a lot of magnesium but also healthy omega-3 fatty acids, which are particularly scarce in a vegan diet.
- Flaxseeds and chia seeds contain a lot of magnesium according to the table. They are also excellent foods for omega-3 fatty acids like walnuts.
- Pistachios are rich in magnesium. They also contain healthy fats, fiber, and proteins abundantly.
- Brazil nuts are also rich in magnesium. In a vegan diet, they are a very important food for selenium.
- Hemp seeds should not be missing from the list. They are rich in magnesium, proteins, fiber, and omega-3 fatty acids.
In addition to nuts and seeds, it is essential to include other magnesium-rich foods in your diet. Use plenty of green leafy vegetables, whole grains, and beans. Also, make use of our magnesium tables in this regard:
- magnesium-containing beverages
- magnesium-rich whole grains and cereals
- fruit with high magnesium content
- vegetables with high magnesium content
Nut Butters And Creams With Magnesium
Nut creams are also a form of nuts that can be a good source of magnesium. These creams are often used as spreads on bread but can also be used as ingredients in many different recipes. There is a variety of nut butter varieties such as almond butter, cashew cream, peanut butter, hazelnut butter, and pistachio butter. Each of these varieties contains a significant amount of magnesium as well as other important nutrients like healthy fats, protein, and fiber. Peanut butter (160 mg magnesium / 100 g) is one of the most well-known nut butter varieties, but it does not appear in the table above as it belongs to legumes. You can access magnesium-containing legumes here.
Keep in mind that these products have a high fat and calorie content (see nut fat table and nut calorie table). Enjoy them in limited quantities and make sure that nut butters, creams, and pastes are preferably free from added sugar or salt.
Improving Magnesium Absorption From Nuts And Seeds
To enhance the absorption of magnesium from these foods, here are several tips:
- Vitamin D can help your body absorb magnesium from nuts and seeds better. Adequate intake of vitamin D is important to activate the proteins involved in magnesium absorption in the intestines. You can naturally obtain vitamin D through sunlight exposure (spring to autumn) or by consuming foods rich in vitamin D.
- Soaking and roasting nuts and seeds can improve magnesium absorption by reducing the amount of phytic acid. Phytic acid can hinder the absorption of magnesium and other minerals in the intestines.
- Simultaneous consumption of foods high in oxalic acid, such as spinach, rhubarb, and chard, can also impair magnesium absorption. Oxalic acid reacts with magnesium, making it less available.
- Excessive calcium intake can also affect magnesium absorption. Calcium and magnesium inhibit each other in the intestines.
Magnesium-Rich Nuts And Seeds In A Vegan Diet
Here are some ideas on how to incorporate nuts and seeds into your vegan diet:
- Add a handful of nuts or seeds to your cereal to spice it up. Recommended options include chia seeds, ground flaxseeds, or chopped almonds.
- You can enjoy a handful of nuts or seeds as a snack between meals or on the go. Try almonds, cashews, pumpkin seeds, or sunflower seeds.
- Use nuts and seeds as toppings for bread, cakes, or muffins. You can try chopped almonds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, or chia seeds.
- Add a handful of nuts or seeds to your smoothies. For even creamier textures, opt for nut butter.
- Sprinkle a few nuts or seeds on your salad to give it a crispy texture and an extra nutritional boost. For example, you can try walnuts, pistachios, or sunflower seeds.
- Add nuts or seeds to your hummus or tahini.
- Sprinkle some nuts or seeds on your vegetable stir-fry to add more crunch.
- Magnesium-rich nuts and seeds also go well with pesto. You can try pine nuts, walnuts, or sunflower seeds.
- Create your own bars with nuts and seeds for energy and protein. You could try almond, chia seed, or cashew nut bars.
- Add seeds and chopped nuts to your sandwich or wraps.