5 Magnesium Myths To Ignore, From Dietitians

Diet tradition, MLM scams, and social media influencers are serving us deceptive details about so-called “wholesome consuming” left and proper, it appears (not that I am cynical or something). From the myths many people have been informed about meals, like bread and pasta, to dietary supplements, collagen, detoxes, and metabolism—oh my—it is a bizarre time for wellness.

That stated, deliberately fueling your physique and working towards mild vitamin, or including nutrient-rich meals to your plate, may be helpful for a lot of. It’s simply that typically, NutritionTok (for starters) takes it too far. On the menu at the moment to debunk? The largest myths you might have heard about magnesium and magnesium deficiency, in addition to truths behind them, in keeping with well being consultants.

5 magnesium myths to maneuver on from

Fantasy: Getting magnesium by way of your pores and skin is more practical than oral dietary supplements

Yep, magnesium sprays, flakes, and salt baths exist—however they “aren’t the reply,” says Kelsey Costa, MS, RDN, a registered dietitian and vitamin guide for the Nationwide Coalition on Healthcare.

“The declare that magnesium absorbed by way of the pores and skin (transdermal) surpasses oral dietary supplements in effectiveness isn’t backed by stable, scientific proof,” Costa says, pointing to a 2017 research in Vitamins that additionally “can not but advocate the appliance of transdermal magnesium.” Additional, she believes the hype round this pattern is pushed by advertising campaigns, not science.

Fantasy: Oral dietary supplements are the most effective route for getting extra magnesium

Whereas oral dietary supplements may be useful, they’re additionally not essentially the finest route. “A number of the finest magnesium-rich meals are nuts and seeds reminiscent of almonds and cashews, cooked spinach, and baked potatoes with pores and skin,” says Sarah Schlichter, MPH, RDN, a registered dietitian with Diet for Operating.

And getting sufficient magnesium is necessary to your sleep, intestine well being, and different components of your well being.

“A number of the finest magnesium-rich meals are nuts and seeds reminiscent of almonds and cashews, cooked spinach, and baked potatoes with pores and skin.”
—Sarah Schlichter, MPH, RDN

Fantasy: Everyone seems to be in danger for magnesium deficiency, so we must always all take dietary supplements

To be clear, magnesium is an important mineral, and almost half of Individuals eat lower than the estimated common requirement, Costa shares. On the similar time, she believes “it’s not correct to say that everybody is universally poor and requires supplementation.”

Facet word: Those that have sure persistent sicknesses, take sure drugs, don’t eat many magnesium-rich meals (like darkish leafy greens, complete grains, nuts, and legumes), and who drink closely are at a better threat of deficiency, Costa provides, referencing the research linked above in addition to one in Open Coronary heart. Some examples of these drugs embody diuretics, chemotherapy medication, and aminoglycoside antibiotics.

Sadly, testing may not at all times provide the proper reply on whether or not you’re poor, both. “Routine blood exams might not at all times mirror an correct magnesium standing because the mineral is especially saved in tissues and bones, and sure kinds of deficiency should present regular blood ranges,” Costa explains.

Fantasy: Physique odor is an indication of magnesium deficiency

These two merely shouldn’t be equated, in keeping with Schlichter.

Jaclyn London, RD, a registered dietitian, agrees. She posted a duet on TikTok with one other creator who claimed her physique odor signaled she was poor in magnesium. Additional, the creator made a magnesium water spray to make use of as a substitute of “cancer-causing deodorant” (*cough cough* one other fantasy!).

@jaclynlondon #duet with @Ali is Toxin Free #magnesium PLEASE DON’T fall for loopy 💩like this!! (And should you don’t odor nice at the moment, nicely…perhaps let’s simply begin with a smart bathe & see the place we land.???) Right here’s the deal: You’re most likely NOT magnesium poor. Right here’s why 👇 •Insufficient consumption of magnesium is quite common— >50% of U.S. adults aren’t getting sufficient (PMID: 29387426)… •…however signs of acute magnesium DEFICIENCY are literally fairly uncommon. That’s b/c our our bodies retailer magnesium in bones & tender tissue cells (about 25g), & &lt1% of complete physique magnesium is saved in blood serum ranges which can be tightly regulated by your kidneys. In different phrases: Even if in case you have low magnesium ranges on a blood take a look at, that doesn’t inform you a lot about your physique’s personal complete magnesium standing (since a blood take a look at is simply measuring that 1% serum magnesium). •For many typically wholesome individuals: Sustaining magnesium homeostasis=your kidneys will naturally excrete much less urine if/when serum magnesium is tremendous low, as they do in response to low ranges of all electrolytes (together with sodium, potassium, & chloride). •Signs of precise, acute magnesium deficiency are extraordinarily severe, & embody lack of urge for food, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, & weak spot, & can progress into numbness, tingling, muscle cramps/contractions, & irregular coronary heart rhythms. It could actually additionally trigger different extreme mineral deficiencies (potassium,, calcium), since your physique’s making an attempt to manage/set up regular electrolyte ranges in your blood stream. •Folks in danger= anybody who’s skilled extreme GI losses on account of persistent circumstances (Crohn’s, Celiac Illness); ppl w/ sort 2 DM, older adults, & ppl w/ persistent alcohol dependence. Backside line: Regardless of what’s everywhere in the web, I’m actually not involved you’re in danger for extreme magnesium deficiency— it’s unlikely at finest. HOWEVER… •It’s possible you’ll be in danger for magnesium inadequacy on account of not consuming sufficient magnesium-rich meals. Since this could improve your threat of persistent illness reminiscent of hypertension, diabetes, & osteoporosis, right here’s the place I’d counsel you begin: 🥑Eat extra leafy greens; nuts & seeds; peanuts & legumes; seafood & 100% whole-grains— DM me if you’d like a extra particular checklist of excessive Mg meals 🥑In case you’re nonetheless involved you’re not getting sufficient: Seek the advice of your PCP earlier than you go complement buying, please! 🥑Select a dietary complement that meets your wants/life-style, & is third-party examined for ingredient verification & security. 👉Any questions? LMK within the feedback 👉Comply with for extra vitamin suggestions, meals product picks & wellness myth-busting 👉Save & share w/ somebody who wants to listen to this #dietitian #magnesiumdeficiency #mythbusting #dietmyths #dietmythsdebunked #nutritionmyths #nutrientdeficiency #foodfirst ♬ once more – floreaudios

Within the caption, London additionally clarified that whereas an insufficient consumption of magnesium is frequent, an precise deficiency is uncommon.

Schlichter provides extra typical signs of magnesium deficiency are fatigue, nausea, weak spot, and lack of urge for food.

Fantasy: Consuming an excessive amount of magnesium-rich meals can result in toxicity and severe well being issues

This fantasy has a caveat, like among the others. “Whereas it’s attainable to eat an excessive amount of magnesium, it’s extremely unlikely by way of food plan alone,” Costa says. “The kidneys are environment friendly at regulating ranges of magnesium within the physique, and extra quantities are excreted in urine.”

That stated, should you do take dietary supplements, watch out—and at all times seek the advice of a medical skilled previous to beginning any new complement routine. “Massive doses of magnesium, particularly in quantities exceeding 350 milligrams per day, can doubtlessly result in dangerous penalties,” Costa provides. A number of the penalties she notes are irregular heartbeat, low blood stress, confusion, and different circumstances that may be deadly.

All of this comes all the way down to a few core messages: Each individual’s physique is totally different with numerous wants, and contemplate pondering twice once you learn well being recommendation on social media—particularly if it’s connected to a product.


Effectively+Good articles reference scientific, dependable, current, sturdy research to again up the data we share. You’ll be able to belief us alongside your wellness journey.


  1. Gröber, Uwe et al. “Fantasy or Actuality-Transdermal Magnesium?.” Vitamins vol. 9,8 813. 28 Jul. 2017, doi:10.3390/nu9080813

  2. DiNicolantonio JJ, O’Keefe JH, Wilson W Subclinical magnesium deficiency: a principal driver of heart problems and a public well being disaster Open Coronary heart 2018;5:e000668. doi: 10.1136/openhrt-2017-000668


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