Magnesium, essential during winter!

Nov 8, 2018 11:36:21 PM
3 min read

Magnesium, essential for triathletes

Magnesium is one of the most important nutrients an athlete's body needs, involved in over 300 processes in the body, and essential to ALL cells.

Surprisingly enough, magnesium is also one of the minerals we are most deficient in! Recently, this study in the UK involving over 3000 participants, revealed ALL of these subjects, representing all age groups, were not getting enough magnesium in their diets, as seen in the graph below.

magnesium shortage-1

This study just took the recommended daily intake into account, meant for the general population, and even this was not met!

Remember, as a triathlete you need even more magnesium, especially because it is excreted through sweat. 

A quick reminder of what magnesium can do for the triathlete?


  • is crucial for energy metabolism: it is needed to make ATP
  • reduces lactic acid buildup and helps glucose metabolism ( as demonstrated in this study)
  • combines with calcium to build healthy bones
  • relaxes the muscles
  • is a key electrolyte needed for hydrating

And the list goes on! 

So, where can we find magnesium in our foods? Below is a short list of magnesium-rich foods:

  • pumpkin seeds, almonds
  • spinach
  • dark chocolate
  • avocado
  • halibut, mackerel, salmon

And of course, high-quality magnesium supplements such as Hiddit's Magnesium, with 3 sources of magnesium and Vit B6 for better absorption.

Why magnesium needs your attention in winter

Colder temperatures, less sunlight... these conditions create different needs in the triathlete's body. You'll need to make adaptations to the way you fuel, but also pay more attention to your diet. 

Magnesium can help you adapt to these new circumstances, let's highlight some of the benefits specific to this season.


Magnesium plays an important role in your body's immune system. Not surprising, as it is involved in the production of so many hormones, essential to your body's health.

Keep your immunity strong, and dodge that yearly flu! 


It may sound trivial, but as the hours of sun lessen, so does the body's production of serotonin, the 'happy feeling hormone'. Magnesium is essential for the production of serotonin, so not having enough of it can make matters even worse.

This is called SAD, Seasonal Affective Disorder, or the winter blues. You will not feel like training when you have any of it's symptoms:

  • irritability
  • low energy
  • sleep issues
  • difficulty concentrating

So top up on magnesium-rich foods and / or take a daily magnesium supplement.

Vitamin D3 production

People are very aware that less sunlight causes the body to produce less Vit D3, and it has become widely recommended to supplement with this vitamin during the darker months. This has beneficial effects on the immune system, and of course also healthy bones.

What is often overlooked, is that Vitamin D3 uses up magnesium in order to get absorbed by the body! Can you see how too low levels of magnesium create even more issues, as Vitamin D3 can't be absorbed anymore?

So support your vitamin D3 levels by maintaining a healthy magnesium intake!

How much magnesium do triathletes need?

Hopefully by now you realize the importance of magnesium to support energy and immunity, especially in the colder months of the year.

How much do we actually need then?

The UK NHS recommends 300 mg a day for men, and 270 for women. This advice however is for general population, and as we've seen in the beginning, NO ONE in the recent study achieved this level of intake.

Studies such as this one suggest that the needs for triathletes could be significantly higher, as 10-20% more magnesium is excreted in urine and sweat as compared to the general population.

So, coming winter pay extra attention to magnesium in your daily diet, consider a good supplement and if you experience any symptoms of magnesium deficiency, have a checkup by your doctor.



Subscribe by Email

No Comments Yet

Let us know what you think