Julie Hambleton
Julie Hambleton
May 15, 2024 ·  3 min read

32 Signs You Have a Magnesium Deficiency & The Foods You Need to Start Eating Immediately

It’s amazing how a shortage of just one nutrient can have such a huge impact on your health. The standard American diet has changed drastically over the last few decades, causing a rise in health problems that were rarely seen before. Chronic nutrient deficiencies are commonplace now, leaving many people in a state of poor health.

Magnesium is one of the most common nutritional deficiencies. It can be very difficult to get from food sources and, unfortunately, the body relies heavily on magnesium for many important processes. Find out if you have a magnesium deficiency and how you can get back on the road to health.

Why Is It So Hard to Get Enough Magnesium?

There are a few different reasons that magnesium deficiency is so common.

  1. Overprocessing foods has decreased the amount of magnesium found in our ingredients. Scientists note an 80% magnesium in white flour, 24% in vegetables, and 83% in rice, since 1940 for example.
  2. People are consuming more dairy than ever. A diet high in calcium and phosphorous requires your body to need more magnesium, researchers explain. The amount of magnesium each person needs is not a universal amount, so many people might think they’re getting enough, but because of their diet and lifestyle choices, they’re falling short.
  3. Exposure to aluminum makes absorbing magnesium harder. The average 21st-century adult is exposed to aluminum on a practically daily basis; between cookware, deodorants, and even medication, it’s hard to avoid. Aluminum interferes with your body’s ability to absorb magnesium- up to 5 times, in fact!
  4. You’re simply not consuming enough magnesium-rich foods in your diet. Magnesium is found naturally in foods like dark leafy greens, mackerel, nuts, seeds, and beans — all foods that don’t play a big role in today’s commonly unhealthy diets. You can also find it in specific supplements or pure magnesium oil.

Additional factors include gastrointestinal disorders, such as Crohn’s; renal disorders; heavy consumption of alcohol; and being a senior. Each of these can increase the risk of magnesium deficiency.

32 Signs That You Have a Magnesium Deficiency

magnesium deficiency symptoms
  • Anxiety
  • Seizures
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Cystitis
  • Memory loss
  • Potassium deficiency: may cause extreme thirst, fluid retention, and irritability
  • Muscle cramps
  • Migraines
  • Heart issues
  • Hypertension
  • Depression
  • Blood clots
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Asthma
  • Liver and kidney disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Calcium deficiency
  • Bowel disease
  • Tremors
  • Osteoporosis
  • Constipation
  • Fatigue
  • Type II diabetes
  • Respiratory difficulties
  • Nausea
  • Fertility/childbearing issues: Getting or staying pregnant, preeclampsia, preterm labor
  • Insomnia
  • Tooth decay
  • Raynaud’s syndrome: may cause cold fingers or toes, color changes in skin due to temperature changes, and numbness in extremities
  • Personality changes: often similar to symptoms of anxiety, depression, and other mood disorders
  • Hypoglycemia

How to Fix the Magnesium Deficiency Problem Now

Magnesium Rich Foods Include:

  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Spinach
  • Swiss chard
  • Sesame seeds
  • Quinoa
  • Black beans
  • Cashews
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Navy beans.

If you don’t get enough magnesium every day, you’re doing your body a big disservice. This mineral is used in over 300 bodily processes and chemical reactions, so not getting enough may be severely hindering your health and your body’s potential.

Adding more magnesium-rich foods to your diet, such as those listed above, can help you increase your levels. Even if you try to get a variety of foods every day, you may still find that you can’t hit your recommended daily value.

That’s where supplementation comes in, whether oral or transdermal. When it comes to oral supplements, we recommend a more bioavailable type such as magnesium citrate, malate or bis-glycinate, and to aim for dosages of 200mg or more. Lastly, while more research still needs to be conducted as this is a newer form of magnesium, many healthcare practitioners are now recommending topical magnesium to boost serum magnesium levels. The latter has the added benefit of providing pain relief as well!


  1. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/raynauds-disease/basics/symptoms/con-20022916
  2. https://www.webmd.com/vitamins-and-supplements/lifestyle-guide-11/supplement-guide-magnesium?page=2
  3. https://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/minerals/magnesium#deficiency
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5786912/