Whole Grains and Magnesium
An important mineral for good health
Magnesium is an important mineral that plays many roles in your body, contributing to your overall health and wellbeing. Some benefits of magnesium include:
- Keeping your blood pressure regular and your heart rhythm steady;
- Strengthening your bones and teeth;
- Helping keep your muscles and nerves healthy;
- Helping produce energy for your body to use; and
- When you’re sick, magnesium helps your body fight infections.
How much magnesium should I aim for?
|Age in years||Aim for intake of mg/day||Stay below* Mg/day|
|Men 31 and older||420||350|
|Women 31 and older||320||350|
|Pregnant women 19-30||350||350|
|Pregnant women over 30||360||350|
|Breastfeeding women 19-30||310||350|
|Breastfeeding women over 30||320||350|
* Magnesium from supplements should not exceed 350 mg per day. It is safe to consume more than your daily magnesium needs from food and water.
**Information from Dieticians of Canada.
Magnesium is found in foods like nuts, whole grains, dark green vegetables and seafood. Here we will focus on whole grains.
Magnesium content in whole grains
|Food||Serving Size||Magnesium (mg)|
|Cereals, all bran||30 g||84-97|
|Wheat germ cereal, toasted||30 g (1/4 cup)||96|
|Quinoa, cooked||125 mL (1/2 cup)||63|
|Whole wheat bread||1 slice (36 g)||27|
Tips to get more whole grains in your diet
Make a habit of adding whole grain products in snacks and meals. Here are a couple of easy ways to add whole grains to your diet every day:
- Choose whole wheat bread instead of white bread in the grocery store, or make a loaf at home like this no-knead whole wheat rosemary bread.
- Add bran flakes or toasted wheat germ to cereal or yogurt, or try a new recipe like this wheat germ smoothie bowl.
Get more tips in our post on packing more whole grains into your diet.
Other important nutrients
In addition to more magnesium, incorporating more whole grains into your diet adds more protein, fibre, vitamins and antioxidants to your diet. To learn more, check out our post on five important nutrients found in whole grain wheat.