15 Magnesium-Rich Foods
Foods with magnesium should be a part of your prenatal diet. Here are the best ways to get magnesium-rich foods in your pregnancy diet.
Pregnant and nursing moms need anywhere from 360 to 400 mg of magnesium per day, depending on age (teens moms need 400 mg of magnesium while moms over 30 require 360 mg). Where do artichokes fit into this equation? One medium artichoke contains close to 90 mg of magnesium, or a quarter of your daily requirement for the mineral.
If you have never prepared a fresh artichoke, this step-by-step guide will have boiled or grilled chokes on your table in less than an hour. Prefer your artichokes out a can or bottle? A 1-cup serving of prepared artichokes contains just over 100 mg of magnesium.
Filled with fiber, iron, and many other good-for-you nutrients, beans are also a rich source for magnesium in your diet. Among common types of beans, black beans contain 120 mg of magnesium per 1-cup serving; kidney beans have 72 mg; and navy beans offer 107 mg per cup. White cannellini beans, with 134 mg of magnesium per 1-cup serving, contain the most. So why not indulge in a plate of the Lemon, Caper, and White Bean Pasta? Or for more concentrated magnesium power, try this simple but tasty White Bean Dip (kids will love this one, too!).
Frozen broccoli contains 37 mg of magnesium per 1-cup serving (or 22 mg per serving if eaten raw). But magnesium isn’t the only reason why you should include this true “superfood” in your prenatal or new-mom diet. Broccoli is filled with fiber and is a rich source of
folate. The cruciferous favorite also contains
calcium, beta carotene, and vitamin K. Frozen broccoli works well in a stir fry or baked casserole dishes. Or how about soup? We like this healthy, but still super-creamy Broccoli Cheddar Chowder .
Nourishing nuts are a good source of healthy fats, protein, and minerals, including magnesium. For a quick mineral boost, the almighty almond provides 156 mg of magnesium in every 2-ounce serving. Other nuts on the magnesium map are:
- Brazil nuts: 128 mg per 2-ounce serving
- Cashew: 148 mg per 2-ounce serving
- Pine Nuts: 132 mg per 2-ounce serving
Need a nutty idea for your next meal? Serve up a side dish of magnesium with this recipe for Orange-Scented Green Beans with Almonds.
Because magnesium is found in the fields of fertile topsoil wheat farmers use to grow their crops, grains naturally contain highly concentrated amounts of the mineral. A slice of whole wheat bread typically covers about 10 percent of the daily value for magnesium.
Making pancakes? Buckwheat flour contains a whopping 301 mg of magnesium per 1-cup serving. Serve buckwheat pancakes with sliced banana, another good source for the mineral.
With 49 mg of magnesium in every 3-ounce serving, oysters are a solid source for this important mineral. But mollusks offer much more for your diet, including vitamin D, zinc, and vitamin B12.
Is this an excuse to indulge in some raw oysters “on the half shell” tonight? Not if you’re pregnant—raw fish or seafood may harbor harmful bacteria that could put your health in jeopardy. Instead, enjoy your oysters as part of a savory soup. Serve with whole grain crackers for added magnesium.
Need to satisfy your sweet tooth? Snack on a banana and you can check off another 30 mg of magnesium. Bananas also provide potassium, vitamin C, and vitamin B6, as well as lots of fiber. Keep a bunch of bananas out on the table for easy access when you need a healthy nibble. Use frozen bananas when making smoothies for a super creamy treat. We like this recipe for
Banana-Cocoa Soy Smoothie.
8. Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds have come a long way since the days when they were just thought of as a late October treat. Packing in 151 mg of magnesium in every 1-ounce serving, plus fiber, zinc, phosphorous, vitamin K, and protein, the humble pumpkin seed is now viewed as a nutrient-dense super food. Roast your own pumpkin seeds in the fall and save for sprinkling on soups and salads—or simply munch by the handful for an easy, on-the-go snack. Didn’t plan ahead? Pumpkin seeds can be purchased year-round at the grocery store.
Squash your need for magnesium with zucchini! Summer squash, including yellow squash and zucchini, provides 43 mg of magnesium per 1-cup serving. What’s nice about this mild-flavored vegetable is that it works in so many dishes, from this breakfast-friendly
Zucchini Frittata to this dinner-ready
Zucchini Crostata with Lemon Ricotta Filling.
Rich in folate, iron, and so many other good-for-you nutrients, spinach is also an excellent source for magnesium, packing in 157 mg of the mineral in every 1-cup serving. Spinach-inspired meal suggestions? Keep it simple with this recipe for Sauteed Spinach or try these family-friendly
Parmesan Spinach Cakes—a good pick if you’re not exactly a spinach fan.
Filled with heart-healthy fats and packed with fiber, one medium avocado provides your diet with 70 mg of magnesium. The fruit (yes, a fruit) make for a filling snack all by itself—simply slice and eat. In the mood for guacamole? We like this recipe for Silken Guacamole made with tofu for added calcium and protein.
Who doesn’t love a little down-home cooking? One of the stars of southern cuisine is okra, a pod-like vegetable that provides a constellation of helpful nutrients, including protein, iron, phosphorus, zinc, vitamin C, folate, calcium—and magnesium! Each 1-cup serving contains 92 mg of the mineral. Steam okra for a healthy side dish with surprisingly nutty flavor or chop and use as an ingredients in gumbo and other southern favorites.
When you are trying to add more magnesium to your diet, rice is nice! For maximum mineral power, pick wild rice (54 mg per 1-cup, cooked) or long grain brown rice (84 mg per cup, cooked). What not to eat? Because most of the mineral content in rice is found in the husk, white rice—rice without its outer husk—only provides 26 mg of magnesium per serving.
14. Blackstrap Molasses
Vegetarian moms-to-be often turn to blackstrap molasses as a good source of iron in their diets. But molasses, a byproduct of sugar cane processing, contains other minerals, too, including 43 mg of magnesium per tablespoon serving. It’ll add a wonderful flavor to your baked beans or gingerbread recipes.
15. Dark Chocolate
As if the silky taste alone weren’t reason enough to indulge, dark chocolate contains 88 mg of magnesium in every ounce, making it a good choice when you just have to give into that gnawing craving for chocolate. But it has to be dark! Look for chocolate made with 70 percent or more pure cacao. Milk chocolates often contain less than 45 percent cacao (chocolate), making its magnesium content minimal.
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