Can You Take Magnesium and Potassium Together?

Dec 19, 2022 MagnesiumPotassium

Can You Take Magnesium and Potassium Together?

Quick Health Scoop

  • Both magnesium and potassium are important minerals that helps support health heart health
  • Magnesium-rich foods include green leafy vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grains
  • Potassium-rich foods include many fruits and vegetables like bananas, apricots, leafy greens, squash, pumpkins, and potatoes
  • Both nutrients have to be obtained through eating certain foods, but many people are falling short of the recommended amounts
  • Taking magnesium and potassium together may help support your heart health

Both magnesium and potassium are important minerals that support your overall health and well-being. Magnesium supports essential muscle and heart functioning while potassium benefits heart functioning by helping to control the activity of the heart muscle.

You may be wondering, can you take magnesium and potassium together? Many people are not getting adequate amounts of magnesium or potassium in their diet. Therefore, taking magnesium and potassium together may benefit your heart health.

Let’s review the separate benefits, sources, and requirements of each nutrient and explore the possible benefits of taking magnesium and potassium together.

Potassium

Potassium is an important nutrient that plays a key role in many of your body’s processes. This mineral can help support nerve and muscle functioning, controls fluid and mineral balance within and outside of your cells, and helps to support heart function by helping to control the activity of the heart muscle.

The majority of the potassium in your body can be found in the cells of your muscles. However, the remaining potassium resides in your liver, bones, and red blood cells.

Benefits

Supports heart health

Potassium and sodium have opposite effects on your body. A high sodium intake can increase blood pressure, while an increase in dietary potassium can help support normal heart function by helping to control the activity of the heart muscle.

Your body requires more potassium than sodium every day, however, most people are eating too much salt (a source of sodium) and not enough potassium.

Research has shown that a diet rich in potassium can help support heart function. [1]

Does Potassium support bone health?

Potassium may be an important mineral to help support the health of your bones.

Supports nerve and muscle functioning

Potassium plays a key role in your body’s electrical system. Once inside the body, potassium acts as an electrolyte as it carries a small electrical change. This electrical change enables your nerve cells to send signals allowing your muscles to contract. Potassium not only helps to generate muscle contractions it also plays an important role in regulating your heartbeat. [2]

Sources of potassium

Potassium can be found in a wide range of both plant and animal foods. Some of the best sources of potassium are fruits and vegetables like bananas, apricots, spinach, squash, pumpkins, and potatoes.

Additionally, meats, poultry, fish, milk, yogurt, and nuts will provide some potassium. Among bread, rice, and cereal, you’ll find more potassium in whole wheat bread, cereals, and brown rice than in white bread and white rice. [3]

Intake Requirements

The adequate intake (AI) for potassium is 2600 mg for most women, and 3400 mg for most men. [4] However, some people may be at risk of low potassium as they are not meeting the recommended amounts of this important nutrient.

In fact, the 2015–2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans identifies potassium as a “nutrient of public health concern” as most Americans are consuming less potassium than what is recommended. [3]

Magnesium

Magnesium is an essential mineral required for more than 300 enzymatic reactions within your body. These enzymes are involved in a wide variety of processes which include muscle and nerve functioning, maintaining the health of your bones and, helping to maintain normal heart functioning. [4]

Benefits

Helps support a healthy heart

 Magnesium helps to maintain a normal and healthy heartbeat by working with calcium which stimulates muscle fibers in the heart to contract. Magnesium balances this effect of calcium, by helping cells in the heart to relax. This helps support a healthy heart.[5]

Supports bone health

Over half of your body’s magnesium is found in your bones, while the rest can be found in your soft tissues.

Some studies have shown that consuming more magnesium from foods or dietary supplements may help support bone health. [6]

Supports dental health

Magnesium helps your body absorb calcium which can support the health of your teeth.

One recent study found that ideal magnesium levels in the body may help promote healthy teeth. [7]

Sources of magnesium

Generally speaking, foods that are high in fiber are often high in magnesium as well. Good sources of magnesium include green leafy vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grains.

Additionally, milk and yogurt will also provide magnesium, along with fortified foods, like breakfast cereal. [4]

Intake Requirements

The recommended magnesium amounts will depend on your gender and age. For example, the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) of magnesium for adults 19-51+ years is 400 to 420 mg daily for men and 310 to 320 mg for women. [4]

Like most other nutrients, magnesium needs are increased during pregnancy and lactation. Pregnant women require roughly 350 to 360 mg and during lactation, 310 to 320 mg of magnesium is needed. [4]

Many people are falling short of the recommended dietary amounts of magnesium placing them at risk for magnesium shortfalls. In fact, according to research, over half of the U.S. population consumes less than the required amount of magnesium from food. [5]

Can You Take Magnesium and Potassium Together?

With all of the benefits that both magnesium and potassium provide, you may be thinking, can you take magnesium and potassium together?

Both magnesium and potassium play important key roles in your body. They perform a variety of functions within your muscles, tissues, and cells all while supporting a healthy lifestyle.

Unfortunately, most people aren’t getting the recommended amounts of magnesium or potassium from their diet.

The standard American diet tends to be high in processed foods which are high in refined grains, sugars, sodium, and unhealthy fats. Over time, this type of diet can leave people with excess calories that are lacking in important micronutrients like magnesium and potassium.

If your diet is lacking in good sources of magnesium and potassium foods taking a magnesium supplement and a potassium supplement  may be of benefit to ensure you are getting adequate amounts of both nutrients.

Magnesium supplements can be found in several forms, including magnesium citrate, magnesium oxide, magnesium malate, magnesium gluconate, magnesium chloride, magnesium glycinate, and magnesium citrate salts. The standard dose of magnesium supplements can range from 200 mg to 400 mg. [5]

In supplement form, you’ll generally find potassium as potassium gluconate, however, other forms like potassium citrate, potassium phosphate, potassium bicarbonate, and  potassium chloride  may also be used. Potassium supplements will provide roughly 90 mg of the nutrient. [4]

The Bottom Line

Magnesium and potassium are two important nutrients that can both support healthy heart functioning.  Both nutrients can help support heart functioning by helping to control the activity of the heart muscle.

You’ll find magnesium in a variety of foods, especially green leafy vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grains. Potassium-rich food sources include fruits and vegetables like bananas, apricots, spinach, squash, pumpkins, and potatoes.

These essential minerals must be obtained by eating a wide-variety of certain foods, however, many people are not getting adequate amounts of potassium or magnesium in their diet, which poses the question: can you take magnesium and potassium together?

If you are not eating a wide variety of magnesium and potassium-rich foods, you may consider talking with your healthcare provider about taking magnesium and potassium together in supplement form to ensure your nutrient needs are being met.

Learn More About Vitamins & Supplements:


† These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.


 References

  1. Filippini T, Naska A, Kasdagli MI, Torres D, Lopes C, Carvalho C, Moreira P, Malavolti M, Orsini N, Whelton PK, Vinceti M. Potassium Intake and Blood Pressure: A Dose-Response Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials. J Am Heart Assoc. 2020 Jun 16;9(12):e015719. doi: 10.1161/JAHA.119.015719. Epub 2020 Jun 5. PMID: 32500831; PMCID: PMC7429027.
  2. Cheng CJ, Kuo E, Huang CL. Extracellular potassium homeostasis: insights from hypokalemic periodic paralysis. Semin Nephrol. 2013 May;33(3):237-47. doi: 10.1016/j.semnephrol.2013.04.004. PMID: 23953801; PMCID: PMC4131448.
  3. National Institutes of Health: Office of Dietary Supplements - Potassium. (2022). Accessed on: October 5, 2022, from https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Potassium-HealthProfessional/#ref
  4. National Institutes of Health: Office of Dietary Supplements - Magnesium. (2022). Accessed on: October 5, 2022, from https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Magnesium-HealthProfessional/
  5. Reider CA, et al. Inadequacy of Immune Health Nutrients: Intakes in US Adults, the 2005-2016 NHANES. Nutrients. 2020 Jun 10;12(6):1735.       
  6. Rondanelli M, Faliva MA, Tartara A, Gasparri C, Perna S, Infantino V, Riva A, Petrangolini G, Peroni G. An update on magnesium and bone health. Biometals. 2021 Aug;34(4):715-736. doi: 10.1007/s10534-021-00305-0. Epub 2021 May 6. PMID: 33959846; PMCID: PMC8313472.
  7. Jawed, Muhammad & Alabdulmonem, Waleed & Alkhamiss, Abdullah & Alghsham, Ruqaih & Alsaeed, Thamir & Alhumaydhi, Fahad & Hershan, Almonther & Shahid, Syed. (2021). Role of Serum Magnesium in Dental Caries. Bahrain Medical Bulletin.

Authors

Emily Hirsch, MS, RD

NatureMade Contributor

Emily has over a decade of experience in the field of nutrition. In her writing, she strives to bring lackluster research on health and nutrition topics to life. She loves writing about GI health and women’s issues. Find her at www.southcharlottenutrition.com

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Melissa Dorval Pine, RD

Science and Health Educator

Melissa is a registered dietitian (RD) and works in our Medical and Scientific Communications department as a Science and Health Educator. She has worked for Pharmavite for over 20 years educating consumers, healthcare practitioners, retailers and employees about nutrition, dietary supplements and overall wellness. Prior to joining the Medical and Scientific Communications team, Melissa launched and managed Pharmavite’s Consumer Relations department. Melissa received her Bachelor of Science degree in Nutritional Science, from the University of Arizona in Tucson, Arizona, and completed her dietetic internship at Veterans Affairs Medical Center in East Orange New Jersey.

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