Magnesium Cooking and Storage

In order to derive the maximum benefit from foods that are rich in magnesium, the magnesium must be readily absorbable. Either the magnesium must already be in a form that can be easily absorbed or it must be combined with other nutrients that will make the absorption easier.

Some of the best food sources of magnesium, such as spinach, chard, and other greens, also have a high oxalic acid content, which makes absorption of the magnesium more difficult. In order to get around this problem, cooking the vegetable is recommended, but afterwards, it should be drained thoroughly so most of the oxalic acid will remain in the boiling water instead of adhering to the vegetable.

Other helpful preparation techniques for preserving the magnesium in foods include soaking grains and beans before cooking and sprouting beans. Also, when cooking foods that are good sources of Vitamin D, as well as magnesium, keep in mind that Vitamin D, which can help in the absorption of magnesium, is fat soluble. Steaming, boiling, or broiling, rather than frying or sautéing, will help preserve both the Vitamin D and the magnesium.

Most proteins and fructose and complex carbohydrates also help in the absorption of magnesium. A peanut butter and jelly sandwich on whole wheat bread would, therefore, seem like a good choice to get more magnesium into the diet.