How much magnesium is beneficial for osteoporosis?

Magnesium deficiency is a common cause of osteoporosis. Women should get at least 320 mg of magnesium from food per day. Supplementation can also be beneficial in many cases.

Health benefits of magnesium

Magnesium is the fourth most abundant mineral in the body. It’s involved in the proper function of more than 300 enzymes, DNA synthesis, protein synthesis, muscle contraction, energy production, glycemic control, myocardial contraction, and in bone development and mineralization!

Therefore, magnesium can play a therapeutic or preventive role in several conditions such as diabetes, obesity, bronchial asthma, preeclampsia, migraine, cardiovascular diseases, and osteoporosis.

What’s the recommended daily intake?

The recommended daily dose of magnesium is about 420 mg and 320 mg for men and women, respectively. Pregnant women need about 360 mg of magnesium a day. Children require much lower doses.[1]

Can magnesium prevent or manage osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis weakens bones and declines bone mass. People with osteoporosis have fragile bones, substantially increasing the risk of fractures. Especially hip and spine fractures.

Bones are constantly remodeled. Chronic imbalances between bone deposition and resorption lead to osteoporosis.

Magnesium plays a key role in bone health. First, about 60% of total body magnesium is stored in the bones.[2]

Magnesium helps increase bone mineral density because it affects the concentrations of parathyroid hormone and the active form of vitamin D. Both are vital for bone mineralization.[3]

Furthermore, low magnesium may lead to osteoporosis, as it leads to the formation of large but fragile crystals in bone tissue, significantly affecting its structure.

Moreover, low magnesium can reduce the vascular supply of bones.

Additionally, low magnesium may increase inflammatory cytokines, which can trigger pathologic bone remodeling and osteopenia.[4]

According to studies, women with osteoporosis have lower serum magnesium levels than women who don’t have osteoporosis. Thus, magnesium deficiency might be a risk factor for osteoporosis!

Postmenopausal women have a much higher risk of developing osteoporosis.

In contrast, high magnesium intake leads to greater bone mineral density in both men and women.

How much magnesium a day is beneficial for osteoporosis?

Women should have normal levels of magnesium in order to decrease the risk of osteoporosis.

Researchers have used magnesium dosages between 290 mg and 1,830 mg a day for a month with great results. High magnesium doses for a short period of time could help postmenopausal women with osteoporosis decrease bone loss if they’re deficient in magnesium.[5]

Keep in mind that the maximum safe dose of magnesium from supplements is 350 mg a day. On the other hand, you can safely get high doses of magnesium from foods!

Extremely high doses of magnesium from supplements for a long time could be bad for your bones, though. High serum magnesium concentrations could cause osteoporosis and osteopenia! Both low and high magnesium doses are bad for the bones!

Thus, you should always consult your physician before taking too much magnesium from supplements.

Therefore, it’s essential to follow a magnesium-rich diet in order to lower the risk of osteoporosis. Consuming foods high in magnesium doesn’t have any side effect.

Do I need magnesium supplements to prevent osteoporosis?

Healthy people who follow a well-balanced diet containing many foods high in magnesium don’t need dietary supplements. They can get the recommended daily intake from food.

But, in many cases, magnesium supplements have been shown to:

  • improve bone mineral density
  • help people with osteoporosis
  • reduce the risk of fractures in middle-aged men and women

So, if you want to increase your daily magnesium intake, you could take magnesium supplements. You’ll find a wide variety of magnesium supplements at best prices on iHerb.

Foods high in magnesium promote bone mineralization

Certainly, eating many foods high in magnesium is good for your bones and for preventing osteoporosis.

Green vegetables (spinach, in particular), seeds, nuts (e.g. almonds, cashews, walnuts), beans, and whole grain cereals are the best dietary sources of magnesium. But the richest common food in magnesium is pumpkin seeds. 1 oz has 168 mg, or 40% of the recommended daily intake!

Moreover, banana and avocado are the richest fruits in magnesium.

Milk also has a moderate amount of magnesium. Water can be high in magnesium as well.

How to naturally manage or prevent osteoporosis?

Lifestyle is also important for preventing osteoporosis. For instance, regular physical activity, no alcohol, no smoke, and healthy diet, are highly recommended in patients with osteoporosis.

Additionally, we should get adequate amounts of many other compounds in order to strengthen our bones. Calcium, copper, zinc, selenium, iron, fluoride, vitamins A, B, C, D, E, folate, flavonoids, and phytoestrogens are all important for increased bone mineral density and preventing osteoporosis.