- Magnesium is fairly easy to get on a plant-based diet.
- You need 310-420 mg for adults, which you can get in a serving or two of certain foods.
- The best vegan sources of magnesium tend to be seeds and nuts, but most foods have some.
Other than fish, there aren’t many good animal product sources of magnesium.
That’s why vegans don’t usually have much trouble getting magnesium. You were eating it before, and now you’re eating more of the foods that are good sources.
Additionally, magnesium is often added to foods that are fortified.
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How Much Magnesium Do You Need?
The recommended daily allowance of magnesium ranges from 310-420 mg for adults (Source).
It’s possible to get your RDA in a single serving if you eat the right foods.
If it does, a doctor may recommend a vegan magnesium supplement.
The Best Overall Vegan Sources of Magnesium
We’ll look at a few tables of the best sources with amounts of magnesium by weight and calories in a second.
But first, you might find this bubble chart useful to visualize what your options are for magnesium. It compares the amount per 100 grams to the amount per 100 calories, to see which food sources are the most efficient.
A perfect food would have a lot of magnesium per serving, while not having too many calories, this would be the top-right corner of the chart below (click to enlarge):
Magnesium is unique in that there really is no source that is both high in magnesium and low in calories.
You have 2 main groups:
- Leafy greens – The spinach, chard, and other greens are all high in magnesium per calorie, but low on a per weight basis. This means that you need to eat a ton of them to get a substantial amount of magnesium.
- Seeds and nuts – While these have a lot more calories, they are the more realistic group to choose. They have a lot of magnesium per 100 grams.
The Best Vegan Sources of Magnesium Per 100 Grams
Using data from the USDA, I’ve compiled a list of the 30 best whole foods that you can eat to get magnesium.
It does not include processed and pre-packaged foods like cereals that may be fortified with magnesium.
|Food||Magnesium (mg) per 100 grams|
|Wheat flour (whole-grain)||117|
Many adults can meet their RDA with a large serving of hemp or flax seeds.
Seeds and certain types of nuts (brazil, pine, cashew) have good amounts of magnesium, as do certain grains (oats, rye, amaranth).
The Best Vegan Sources of Magnesium Per 100 Calories
As we saw in the bubble chart, certain leafy greens have a good amount of magnesium, but you have to eat a ton of them.
That might be good if you’re trying to lose weight, but otherwise you probably want to stick to the foods in the above section.
|Food||Magnesium (mg) per 100 calories|
|Lettuce (red leaf)||95|
Overall, most people don’t need to do anything special to reach their RDA of magnesium. But if you’re worried you’ve been missing some, include any of those top vegan magnesium food sources in your meals and you’ll easily reach your goals.
Vegan Recipes High in Magnesium
Most seeds and nuts can either be eaten by themselves or just thrown on salads, but in case you want to get a bit fancier, here’s a few vegan recipes that feature good sources of magnesium: