How Much Magnesium Should I Take on Keto?

minute read | Last update: Nov 29th2022

This article is backed by studies and reviewed by a certified dietician.

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Religiously following the keto diet is one of the healthiest ways of living, and you can clearly notice that. While it does ensure you get enough protein and fat, the thought of mineral deficiency concerns you. This leaves you begging with the question, how much magnesium should I take on keto?

The keto diet can lead to low magnesium levels, which is why you must consume at least 200-400mg of this nutrient daily. You can do so by including specific magnesium-rich foods in your diet or opt for some healthy supplements. Remember, your body needs it for over 300 processes every day, and a magnesium deficiency can be problematic!

The daily Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for magnesium on a regular diet is about 310-400mg. On a ketogenic diet, you may not be able to achieve the required level due to the restriction of multiple types of foods. You need not hot your head about it anymore! Walk through this informational blog and catch up on all those lost magnesium levels now!

How much magnesium is required on keto?

What is all the hype about magnesium on keto, you may wonder!

Long story short, your body cannot function well without enough amount of magnesium. From muscle cramps to fluctuating sugar levels, a deficiency of this nutrient can cause multiple health issues.

Besides, your body cannot produce it naturally, so you must consume it through food and other sources.

Magnesium needs on a regular diet

Do you think you are consuming enough of it already? Including a total of 300mg of magnesium in your diet is not easy until you are aware of its exact nutrient content.

According to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES),

 around 48% of Americans' magnesium intake does not meet the estimated average requirement. That is an alarming figure, isn't it!

Well, your body as an adult contains only about 25g of magnesium distributed among bones, tissues, and blood serum. And approximately 120mg of this is excreted in your urine every day. Therefore, you need to consume enough magnesium-rich foods to maintain the optimum level.

Check out this chart displaying the recommended daily requirement of magnesium based on age and gender.

Recommended Daily Requirement of Magnesium On A Regular Diet




1–3 years

80 mg

80 mg

4–8 years

130 mg

130 mg

9–13 years

240 mg

240 mg

14–18 years

410 mg

360 mg

19–30 years

400 mg

310 mg

31–50 years

420 mg

320 mg

51+ years

420 mg

320 mg

Magnesium needs on keto

Why do you need more electrolytes, specifically magnesium, on keto?

Electrolytes are a group of minerals, including potassium, sodium, magnesium, and more, that aid multiple organs and cellular body functions.

On a keto diet, your body processes these electrolytes differently due to the reduction of carbs. Moreover, the insulin release on this diet significantly shrinks (low carb levels), leading to your kidney excreting more sodium.

The higher loss of sodium dramatically impacts the level of other electrolytes, including magnesium.

Sounds confusing?

Here is a breakdown of why you may lose more electrolytes on keto, requiring an upsurge in the magnesium intake!

  • Carbs are present in your body with water
  • As your carb intake decreases, the level of water excretion dramatically rises
  • Water retention rates become surprisingly low
  • Insulin release slows down due to lower carb levels
  • Kidneys end up excreting sodium in higher amounts
  • A rise in sodium loss affects the other electrolytes

Why is magnesium important on keto?

So far, you know all about how magnesium works in the body and how does a keto diet affects magnesium requirements.

The prime question about the importance of magnesium on keto still prevails. You must note that this is one of the most essential nutrients required by your body.

Do you experience muscle cramps, irritability, issues in sleeping? Check out this list of the prime functions that magnesium is responsible for!

Maintaining regular muscle and nerve function

Magnesium ensures the smooth flow of neurotransmitters through the blood vessels. As a result, adequate intake of this nutrient helps prevent headaches and migraines.

This fourth most abundant mineral in the human body aids the healthy regulation of muscles. How you may wonder!

The calcium present in your muscles attaches to the proteins, causing a change in their shape. Consequently, your muscles end up contracting. Magnesium works by blocking this calcium to help relax your muscles. This way, it aids muscle cramps and other similar pains.

Keeping a healthy immune system

High inflammation levels can lead to severe health concerns like cancer, heart diseases, and other such problems. Magnesium ensures a healthy immune system by curbing inflammation and other related conditions.

Besides, this particular electrolyte also aids in producing antibodies in your body, preparing you to fight unknown viruses and bacteria!

Maintaining cardiovascular health

Similar to the other muscles of the body, magnesium ensures the healthy functionality of the heart as well.

In fact, raising the magnesium intake can significantly decrease the chances of a heart attack. As per a meta-analysis conducted in 2019, every 100 mg of magnesium per day curbs the chances of stroke by 2%.

Building strong bones

Till now, you always took calcium to be the most essential mineral for bones. At least that's what your mamma told you.

If not as high as calcium, magnesium does play a significant role in bone formation, and it is proven. According to research, enough magnesium consumption aids bone density and the formation of bone crystals.

Symptoms of low magnesium

In most cases, healthy individuals like you may not realize the potential lack of magnesium in your body.

Well, magnesium deficiency or hypomagnesemia is not easily recognizable. So, if you have any of the symptoms mentioned below, get your magnesium levels checked right away.

If your body has adequate amounts of this mineral, the results must show a magnesium level above 0.75 mmol/L.

  • Appetite reduction
  • Constant vomiting
  • High levels of fatigue
  • Severe muscle cramps
  • Seizures
  • Fluctuations in the heart rhythm
  • Irregular insulin levels
  • Twitching and tingling

What happens due to a magnesium deficiency on keto?

Though it is not given as much importance as it deserves, hypomagnesemia leads to multiple severe health disorders. These conditions develop gradually as you restrict your diet and adopt a completely new one.

Besides, these are difficult to recognize initially, which is why you must ensure optimum magnesium levels at all times.

Keto flu

One of the prime consequences of magnesium deficiency on keto is the keto flu.

Due to the reduced carb intake, your body will release electrolytes like magnesium in excessive amounts. Consequently, the electrolyte balance of your body will be drastically impacted.

This imbalance leads to keto flu symptoms, including fatigue, nausea, headache, constipation, and other similar health concerns.


Magnesium is responsible for the smooth working of your nervous system.

Therefore, a lack of this mineral might cause significant irregularities in your mood.

Besides, this nutrient helps create a hormone balance in your body by regulating cortisol levels.

It also aids in the production of other hormones like estrogen, testosterone, and progesterone. Magnesium helps curb depression by maintaining a perfect hormonal balance.

Cardiovascular diseases

According to a review, magnesium deficiency can raise your risk of heart diseases. Moreover, individuals with heart failures have shown severely low levels of magnesium.

Apart from that, low magnesium levels increase the risks of heart diseases. These include increase build-up of arterial plaque, hardened arteries, a surge in cholesterol levels, etc.

Adverse repercussions for diabetics

Hypomagnesemia can significantly impact individuals suffering from type 2 diabetes or insulin resistance. It causes a considerable rise in glucose levels in the kidney that result in increased urine excretion.

Studies have shown that individuals with type 2 diabetes have low magnesium levels. Moreover, a high magnesium intake can decrease your chances of developing diabetes by 47%.

Keto-friendly magnesium-rich foods

That was a long list of consequences low levels of magnesium can have. Well, you need not worry about it if you include enough magnesium-rich foods in your meals. The best part is a host of keto-friendly foods easily falls into that category.

So, what's the hold?

Dig into this list of tasty keto-friendly foods along with their specific magnesium content!

  • Hemp seeds (1 oz = 179 mg)
  • Pumpkin seeds (1 oz = 168 mg)
  • Almonds (1 oz = 76 mg)
  • Pumpkin seeds (2 fl. oz = 162 mg)
  • Dark chocolate (1 oz = 64 mg)
  • Avocado (1/2 piece = 29 mg)
  • Cooked spinach (8 fl. oz = 151 mg)
  • Macadamia nuts (2 fl. oz = 44 mg)
  • Cashews (1 oz = 83 mg)
  • Cooked salmon (3 oz = 23 mg)

Avoid magnesium deficiency through supplements

Do you think calculating the magnesium content in meals is challenging? Undoubtedly, it is, which is why you can also opt for dietary magnesium supplements. It significantly helps eliminate the extra effort of ensuring the right amount of magnesium intake.

Read along to explore some of the most common types of magnesium supplements out there.

Tip: The FDA may not strictly regulate these. You must purchase supplements only from reliable brands.

  • Magnesium Chloride – aids digestive issues
  • Magnesium Glycinate – helps reduce muscle pain
  • Magnesium Sulfate – relieves muscle tension
  • Magnesium Citrate – best for individuals experiencing constipation
  • Magnesium Malate – beneficial for fatigue
  • Magnesium Taurate – helps cardiovascular conditions
  • Magnesium Oxide – aids constipation

Note: These supplements might interfere with certain types of medications. Therefore, consult your doctor before combining the two.

Wrap Up

Did you ever think magnesium could be this important? Most individuals are not aware of the significant impact this mineral has on their bodies. At least you do not fall in that category anymore!

Following a keto diet has countless health benefits, with the prime one being a flourishing lifestyle. It helps you maintain optimal weight levels along with regulating blood sugar, blood pressures and keeping multiple health concerns at bay.

That being said, pursuing this fantastic diet might also leave some of the essential minerals off track. Well, you can quickly bring it back by being a tad bit more conscious about your meals (which you already are, yes!).

Include some succulent magnesium-rich foods in your keto regimen, or pick healthy magnesium supplements to ensure the ideal lifestyle you always yearned for!


Do magnesium supplements work on keto?

Yes, magnesium supplements can aid your health conditions to a great extent while on keto. As you transition to this diet, symptoms like excessive muscle cramps, problems in sleeping, fatigue, anxiety, etc., are pretty common.

Taking quality magnesium supplements can help relieve these systems and also ensure smooth body processes.

What is the best magnesium source on keto?

A host of keto-friendly foods like avocados, almonds, seeds, etc., are highly rich in magnesium. However, hemp seeds and pumpkin seeds top this chart with a magnesium content of 179 mg/oz and 168 mg/oz, respectively.

You can also opt for magnesium supplements to achieve the optimal requirement!

Does magnesium aid the ketogenic diet?

When you start the keto diet, your body's sodium excretion rate rises exponentially. Sodium being one of the prime electrolytes, this activity creates a significant imbalance in the other essential electrolytes, including magnesium.

Adding high sources of magnesium to your keto regimen helps create a healthy electrolyte balance while also aiding multiple body processes.

About the author

The Authentic Keto Team is here to bring you health tips that help you with losing weight fast. We focus on a clean keto diet for beginners because we believe that is the easiest and most simple way to healthy eating. Our keto weight loss tips will not only bring you into ketosis fast but will also help you to improve your mental health, sleep problems, and wellness.

- Our goal is to make keto success easy. -

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