How Much Magnesium a Day?
Magnesium is essential for more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body. Not only does the mineral support a healthy immune system and maintain normal nerve and muscle function, but it also regulates blood sugar and blood pressure, and keeps bones strong. Although magnesium deficiencies are not seen very often in the United States, the U.S. Office of Dietary Supplements notes that most Americans do not get the recommended amounts of magnesium. Taking a supplement may help individuals meet the recommended dietary allowance for magnesium.
Recommended Dietary Allowance
The minimum amount of magnesium a person should get each day depends on age. Women under 30 need 310 milligrams of magnesium each day, while men of the same age need around 400 milligrams. For women over the age of 30, magnesium recommendations jump slightly to 320 milligrams. Men over 30 should take in 420 milligrams.
- The minimum amount of magnesium a person should get each day depends on age.
- Women under 30 need 310 milligrams of magnesium each day, while men of the same age need around 400 milligrams.
How Much Magnesium Per Day?
Pregnant and breastfeeding women require more magnesium than other women of their age group. The recommended dietary allowance of magnesium during pregnancy is 350 milligrams a day for women under 30 and 360 mg a day for women 31 years old or older. The recommended dietary allowance of magnesium for breastfeeding women is 310 milligrams a day for those under 30 and 320 mg a day for those who are 31 years old or older. In addition, some other medical conditions may require a person to take larger-than-normal amounts of magnesium. Alcoholism, diabetes, Crohn’s disease, regional enteritis, gluten sensitive enteropathy are a few conditions that may put someone at a greater risk for a magnesium deficiency. If you are concerned that a medical condition may be interfering with your body’s magnesium levels, consult your doctor for advice on supplementation.
- Pregnant and breastfeeding women require more magnesium than other women of their age group.
- The recommended dietary allowance of magnesium for breastfeeding women is 310 milligrams a day for those under 30 and 320 mg a day for those who are 31 years old or older.
Getting Too Much
Although getting excess amounts of magnesium through food does not pose any health risks, taking too large of a dosage of a magnesium supplement may cause adverse side effects. Symptoms of a magnesium overdose include diarrhea, stomach cramps, muscle weakness, nausea, appetite loss, extremely low blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, changes in mental status and difficulty breathing. To avoid these side effects, do not consume more than the tolerable upper intake level for your age group.
Tolerable Upper Intake Levels
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The tolerable upper intake level for adults, regardless of gender, is 350 milligrams of magnesium a day. Do not consume more than these amounts unless specifically instructed by a doctor to do so.
How Much Magnesium Per Day?
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- Office of Dietary Supplements: Magnesium
- Institute of Medicine of the National Academies; Dietary Reference Intakes; Recommended Dietary Allowances
- Institute of Medicine of the National Academies; Dietary Reference Intakes; Tolerable Upper Intake Levels
- Rodríguez-Morán M, Guerrero-Romero F. Oral Magnesium Supplementation Improves Insulin Sensitivity and Metabolic Control in Type 2 Diabetic Subjects: A randomized double-blind controlled trial. Diabetes Care.2003 Apr;26(4):1147-52. doi:10.2337/diacare.26.4.1147
- Office of Dietary Supplements/National Institutes of Health. Magnesium: Fact Sheet for Health Professionals. Bethesda, Maryland; updated July 11, 2019.
- Kass LS, Poeira F. The effect of acute vs chronic magnesium supplementation on exercise and recovery on resistance exercise, blood pressure and total peripheral resistance on normotensive adults. J Int Soc Sports Nut. 2015;12:19. doi:10.1186/s12970-015-0081-z
- Morais JBS, Severo JS, de Alencar GRR, et al. Effect of magnesium supplementation on insulin resistance in humans: A systematic review. Nutrition. 2017 Jun;38:54-60. doi:10.1016/j.nut.2017.01.009
- Rosanoff A, Weaver CM, Rude RK. Suboptimal magnesium status in the United States: are the health consequences underestimated? Nutr Rev. 2012 Mar;70(3):153-64. doi:10.1111/j.1753-4887.2011.00465.x
- Zhang X, Li Y, Del Gobbo LC, et al. Effects of Magnesium Supplementation on Blood Pressure: A Meta-Analysis of Randomized Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Trials. Hypertension. 2016;68:324-33. doi:10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.116.07664
Elizabeth Wolfenden has been a professional freelance writer since 2005 with articles published on a variety of blogs and websites. She specializes in the areas of nutrition, health, psychology, mental health and education. Wolfenden holds a bachelor's degree in elementary education and a master's degree in counseling from Oakland University.