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Spinach and Magnesium
By Nutritional Therapist Roisin Cooke, lecturer at CNM (College of Naturopathic Medicine) in Edinburgh.

Magnesium

First found in Magnesia in Greece, magnesium is a much under-rated but essential mineral.
Why you need it 

Second only to potassium in terms of concentration in the body, magnesium is necessary for more than 300 chemical reactions in the human body.  Approximately 50-60% of a person's magnesium is stored in the bones.  Some of the key functions we need magnesium for are bone metabolism, energy production, detoxification, nervous system or mood balancing, regulating muscle function, and enhanced control of blood sugar.

What you find it in
Most people's diets do not include sufficient magnesium.  The following foods are magnesium rich: legumes; nuts and seeds, particularly almonds, cashews, sesame and pumpkin seeds; whole grains such as barley, buckwheat and quinoa; green leafy vegetables, especially spinach and swiss chard.  

Seasonal Recipe Tip

Spinach is convenient and affordable, with many nutritional benefits, including magnesium availability. Try a couple of portions of organic spinach per week (not more).  Spinach can be added to smoothies (it will blend well if you do not have a juicer), omelettes or frittatas, or mixed in with pasta or salads. To serve as a side: put a tablespoon of olive oil in a pan with some chopped garlic, and heat spinach until it wilts.  Add salt and pepper to flavour and some lemon juice.  Alternatively you can add a bunch of spinach to homemade pesto.  

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


 
 

 

 

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