6 Reasons Women Need Magnesium

by Allison Bush Editor

Magnesium is essential to many functions in the body, from relaxing muscles to creating our main energy molecule, ATP. Although it’s important for both men and women, magnesium plays a few extra roles in a woman’s body.

Proud pregnant woman holding her belly.

Pregnancy benefits

When you're pregnant, magnesium helps build and repair your body's tissues. A severe deficiency during pregnancy may lead to preeclampsia, poor fetal growth, and even infant mortality. Pregnant women 19 to 30 years of age should try to consume 350 mg of magnesium daily.

Nurse checking blood pressure of a pregnant woman.

Regulates blood pressure

Magnesium has been shown to play a key role in regulating high blood pressure naturally. The potent mineral helps dilate blood vessels, prevent spasms in your heart muscle and blood vessel walls, and dissolve blood clots. The Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences recommends that women who are 31 years or older receive a dietary intake of magnesium of about 320 mg.

Doctor showing an x-ray to a senior patient.

Prevents osteoporosis

Even though calcium and vitamin D get most of the spotlight in supporting bone health, some evidence suggests that magnesium deficiency may be an additional risk factor for postmenopausal osteoporosis. This may be due to the fact that magnesium deficiency alters calcium metabolism and the hormones that regulate calcium.

Woman with cramps.

Reduces symptoms of PMS

A double-blinded placebo-controlled clinical trial suggests magnesium can significantly improve PMS symptoms, including mood changes.

Magnesium supplements on a periodic table of elements.

Relieves pregnancy-induced leg cramps

Pregnant women frequently experience painful leg cramping. According to the Mayo Clinic, too little magnesium, as well as potassium and calcium in the diet can contribute to leg cramps.

Woman with a migraine.

Relieves migraines

People with migraines often have lower levels of magnesium than people who do not, and several studies suggest that magnesium may reduce the frequency of migraine attacks. The American Migraine Association provides information about magnesium and migraine prevention.

Allison Bush
Meet Our Writer
Allison Bush

Allison Bush is a former HealthCentral editor who covered a wide range of health topics.