Last Chance - Mother's Day Sale

Last chance - Mother's Day Sale

For moms, thyroid health matters. Save $25 on our thyroid test kit or self-pay membership using code MOMDAY.

Benefits of Magnesium for Thyroid Health

Learn the benefits of optimizing magnesium levels for better thyroid health.
Benefits of Magnesium for Thyroid Health
Last updated:
Medically Reviewed by:

In this article:

  • What is magnesium's role in the body?
  • What is magnesium deficiency?
  • How magnesium affects the thyroid
  • Benefits of optimizing magnesium levels for thyroid health
  • How to optimize your magnesium levels

Magnesium is currently a buzzword in the health and wellness community, and for a good reason. This essential mineral plays critical roles in numerous cellular and enzymatic processes. When your magnesium level is even slightly low, it can disrupt everything from your sleep to your bowel habits. Here's a look at why magnesium is popular and why it is especially crucial for people with hypothyroidism.

What is magnesium's role in the body? 

Magnesium is one of the most abundant minerals on Earth. It is the fourth most common cation in the human body, responsible for over 300 enzymatic reactions that help make proteins and DNA. Magnesium also helps make bone and regulates muscle and nerve function, blood sugar levels, and blood pressure. One of its most important roles is producing energy for your cells.

One of magnesium's key roles in the body is its involvement in energy production and metabolism. Magnesium acts as a cofactor in the enzymatic processes that convert food into energy. This is particularly important for thyroid health because the thyroid gland regulates metabolism. Low magnesium levels can lead to reduced energy production, contributing to fatigue, a common symptom of hypothyroidism. By maintaining optimal magnesium levels, individuals can support their metabolic processes and enhance their energy levels.

Our bodies contain over 25 g of magnesium. We store over 99% of the body's magnesium in the bones, muscles, and soft tissues.  

What is magnesium deficiency?

When magnesium levels are too low, it can lead to several challenging symptoms. In severe cases, it can be life-threatening. Symptoms of a magnesium deficiency include:

  • Muscle cramping, especially with exercise
  • Restless leg syndrome (RLS) or muscle spasms
  • Headaches and migraines
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Constipation
  • Fatigue

Risk factors of magnesium deficiency

Generally, magnesium deficiencies are due to a low dietary intake of this mineral in healthy people. Only an estimated 2% of the population has a true magnesium deficiency. However, one study declared that at least 75% of Americans do not have adequate magnesium intake. This is partly due to poor eating habits and the mineral content in our food. Thus, the standard American diet may be a risk factor for magnesium deficiency. 


There are other risk factors for magnesium deficiency, including:

  • Taking certain medications
  • Chronic alcoholism
  • Having a condition that causes chronic diarrhea such as Crohn's disease, celiac disease, and IBD
  • Type 2 diabetes

In many of these conditions, magnesium deficiency occurs because you either have excessive losses of the magnesium you ingest or cannot absorb it. 

Older adults are also more susceptible to magnesium deficiency because the gut has a more challenging time absorbing it, and the kidneys often excrete too much magnesium.

How magnesium affects the thyroid

We need magnesium to convert the inactive thyroid hormone T4 into the active thyroid hormone T3. Without this conversion, cells do not receive the more potent form of thyroid hormone. Therefore, when magnesium levels are low, our thyroid is not able to function correctly. 

People with autoimmune thyroid disease commonly have sub-optimal magnesium levels. Specifically, people with Hashimoto's thyroiditis tend to have deficiencies in key micronutrients partly due to autoimmune processes in the body. One of the hallmark signs of an autoimmune disease is inflammation. People with Hashimoto's have inflammation of the thyroid gland, which can lead to eventual thyroid failure. However, autoimmune diseases often occur together in a situation called polyautoimmunity, resulting in system-wide inflammation.

When the body is chronically inflamed, it can lead to more frequent infections and food sensitivities, which can off-set your gut health. Some speculate that autoimmune diseases sometimes start in the gut through "leaky gut syndrome." A leaky gut is where the tight junctions between your intestinal cells widen, allowing toxins to enter your bloodstream. 

When you have disturbances in your gut, it can change your stomach acid's acidity, cause fat malabsorption, disrupt your gut microbiota, and weaken digestive enzymes. Thus, people with Hashimoto's and other autoimmune disorders may struggle with nutrient deficiencies because they cannot absorb them in their gut.

Studies have shown that adequate magnesium levels can help reduce the production of thyroid antibodies, thereby lowering the autoimmune attack on the thyroid gland. Ensuring sufficient magnesium intake through diet or supplements can be an essential strategy for managing autoimmune thyroid disorders and improving overall thyroid function.

Benefits of optimizing magnesium levels for thyroid health

Relieves sleeplessness or insomnia

Getting a quality night of sleep affects everything from how the body processes food to how it regulates blood sugar, remembers information, controls inflammation, and more.  However, a magnesium deficiency may cause occasional sleeplessness or insomnia. A research study shows that people who received 500mg of magnesium daily experienced improved sleep efficiency and increased concentrations of renin, cortisol, and melatonin compared to the placebo group.

Reduces migraine headaches

One symptom of hypothyroidism may be headaches or migraine headaches. A research study of 50 migraine-sufferers and a control group of 50 people without any history of migraines shows that magnesium levels are much lower in patients with migraines than in the healthy group. Another study shows that supplementing with magnesium may help lower the frequency of migraines

Magnesium and Stress Reduction

Chronic stress can negatively impact thyroid health by increasing cortisol levels, which can interfere with thyroid hormone production. Magnesium helps regulate the body's stress response by supporting adrenal health and promoting relaxation. Supplementing with magnesium can help reduce stress and its detrimental effects on the thyroid, thereby supporting overall thyroid function and well-being.

Lowers blood pressure

Secondary hypertension is high blood pressure caused by another medical condition. When the thyroid gland is underactive and doesn't produce enough thyroid hormone, high blood pressure can result. An article in an American Heart Association journal summarized results from over 30 different clinical trials to establish the effect of magnesium supplementation on blood pressure. Results show that supplementing with magnesium for one month helps to elevate magnesium levels in the body and reduce blood pressure.

Image of yellow pill capsules spilling out of clear bottle onto white surface

Manage your magnesium levels through diet and supplements

Your diet is the primary way to boost your magnesium intake. If you wish to boost your magnesium intake through diet, try increasing your intake of the following foods:

  • Leafy green vegetables (spinach, kale, etc.)
  • Legumes
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Whole grains
  • Milk, yogurt, and other milk-based products
  • Fortified breakfast cereals

Ensuring a varied and balanced diet with these foods can help maintain adequate magnesium levels and support thyroid health.

Foods containing dietary fiber generally provide magnesium. Tap, mineral, and bottled waters can also be sources of magnesium, but the amount varies by source and brand.

Sometimes it's hard to optimize magnesium intake with food alone. Supplementing with magnesium is one of the best ways to ensure you are meeting your minimum daily requirement. In general, magnesium is safe to take. Still, it is best to check with your doctor before starting this supplement if you are taking other medications.

Daily Thyroid Care


The reinvented multivitamin that works smarter to help fill the gaps in your thyroid health journey
Learn More
Vegan and free of gluten, GMOs, dairy and iodine

Recommended daily intake of magnesium

The average daily intake level sufficient to meet the nutrient requirements is 400 mg for adult men and 310 mg for women ages 19 to 30. People over the age of 31 are recommended 420 mg daily for men and 320 mg for women.

See the recommended daily intake for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding here.

Risks of Magnesium Supplementation

Typically the kidneys eliminated any excess magnesium in the urine. Hence, there is no real risk of getting too much magnesium from food. However, high doses of magnesium from supplements or medications may cause uncomfortable symptoms like diarrhea, accompanied by nausea or abdominal cramping.

Laxatives and antacids that contain magnesium may cause magnesium toxicity when taken in substantial doses (more than 5,000 mg/day). Symptoms of magnesium toxicity may include nausea, vomiting, facial flushing, urine retention, depression, and lethargy before progressing to worse symptoms.

Monitoring and Supplementing Magnesium

While dietary sources of magnesium are crucial, some individuals may require supplements to meet their daily needs, especially those with digestive disorders that affect nutrient absorption. Magnesium supplements come in various forms, such as magnesium citrate, magnesium oxide, and magnesium glycinate, each with different absorption rates and benefits. Consulting with a healthcare provider can help determine the appropriate type and dosage of magnesium supplement to support thyroid health effectively.

A note from Paloma Health

Some vitamins, minerals, and herbs may benefit people with hypothyroidism. However, each of us unique with individual sensitivities, so it's critical to work with a trustworthy thyroid doctor to develop a thyroid supplement routine based on your specific needs. 

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.


Share article:

Julia Walker, RN, BSN

Clinical Nurse

Julia Walker, RN, BSN, is a clinical nurse specializing in helping patients with thyroid disorders. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Regis University in Denver and a Bachelor of Arts in the History of Medicine from the University of Colorado-Boulder. She believes managing chronic illnesses requires a balance of medical interventions and lifestyle adjustments. Her background includes caring for patients in women’s health, critical care, pediatrics, allergy, and immunology.

Read more

Is Paloma Right For Me?

Hypothyroidism is a long-term commitment and we’re committed to you. Schedule a free, no-obligation phone consultation with one of our intake specialists to find out more.

Schedule a call
thyroid hormone for hypothyroidism

Find out if Paloma is right for you. Schedule a free call with one of our health care advisors.

Schedule a Call