Different Types of Magnesium and Their Health Benefits

In this blog post, we are going to look at the health benefits of different types of magnesium, so that you can understand which ones will be the most beneficial for your body. We will also discuss how to use them and how much magnesium you need every day.

In our daily diets, there are different types of magnesium that people can get from either dietary supplements or from food sources. Each type of magnesium has different advantages and disadvantages. For example, some types of magnesium are easier to absorb within the body than others.

What Is Magnesium?

Magnesium is a mineral that’s crucial to the body’s function. Magnesium helps to keep blood pressure normal, bones strong, and the heart rhythm steady. Magnesium is one of the most common minerals in the body. It plays a role in over 600 metabolic reactions, including energy production, protein formation, blood pressure regulation, and helps keep the body healthy and stable during a fasting diet.

However, some people need extra help getting enough magnesium. Choosing the right magnesium supplement can help to boost levels of this nutrient and may help with various medical conditions.

Types of Magnesium

The following are the many types of magnesium that are present in dietary supplements and food products:

  • Magnesium citrate
  • Magnesium glycinate
  • Magnesium chloride
  • Magnesium lactate
  • Magnesium malate
  • Magnesium taurate
  • Magnesium sulphate
  • Magnesium oxide

Each type of magnesium has different properties, which can vary in terms of their:

  • Medical uses
  • Bioavailability
  • Potential side effects

However, in high doses, magnesium can be toxic, which is why you need to be careful about the doses and always follow the guide that the supplement provides. Sometimes, it can also interact with medications, such as antibiotics, and is unsuitable for people with certain underlying conditions, including kidney disease.

Magnesium Malate

Magnesium Malate is a compound of magnesium and malic acid and some evidence suggests that it is highly bioavailable and that people’s bodies tolerate it well. Likewise, Magnesium Malate is the fastest to absorb after a single dose.

This type of magnesium in particular supports muscle function, cardiovascular health, and energy production. Malic acid is a natural fruit acid that is present in most cells in the body and is an intermediate in the Krebs cycle, where energy is captured during the metabolism of carbs and fats.

Magnesium Bisglycinate

Magnesium Bisglycinate is a compound of magnesium and glycine, an amino acid, which people tolerate very well and it produces minimal side effects. This means that it is a great option for people who require higher doses of this nutrient or who experience side effects when using other types of magnesium.

This type of magnesium is used to prevent and treat low amounts of magnesium in the blood. It can also be used to treat symptoms of too much stomach acid such as stomach upset, heartburn, and acid indigestion. This magnesium is very important for the normal functioning of cells, nerves, muscles, bones, and the heart.  

Magnesium Lactate

This type of magnesium is a compound of magnesium and lactic acid. It absorbs in the gut very easily and it is very easy for the cells to make the most use of it. Magnesium lactate is a naturally occurring mineral that is needed in the body to support the function of the heart, nervous system, and digestive system. 

Magnesium Citrate

Magnesium citrate is a popular form of magnesium. It is often an ingredient in supplements and appears to be easier for the body to absorb than some other forms. For example, studies have found that Magnesium Citrate is easier for our bodies to absorb compared to Magnesium Oxide and Magnesium Chelate. Doctors often use it to treat constipation, although some people have experienced unwanted digestive side effects, such as diarrhea.

Magnesium Chloride

Magnesium chloride is a type of salt that people can find in topical magnesium products such as magnesium oils and some bath salts. It can also be used as an alternative method for getting more magnesium into our bodies, especially for the purposes of better skin. However, it is still unclear whether the skin is capable of absorbing much magnesium via this method. It is possible to take Magnesium Chloride internally because the intestines do absorb it well, however, some people may experience digestive issues.

Magnesium Sulphate

Magnesium Sulphate is the form of magnesium in Epsom salts. Many people add these salts to baths and foot soaks to soothe aching muscles. Although it has been shown to help with these aches, further research is still needed to understand how much magnesium the body can actually absorb with this method.

Magnesium Oxide

Sometimes, doctors may use Magnesium Oxide to treat constipation or as an antacid for heartburn or indigestion. This is an element of magnesium that your body needs in order to function properly. Magnesium oxide may also be used as a laxative for short-term, rapid emptying of the bowel, however, this type of magnesium should be used repeatedly. Magnesium oxide is also used as a dietary supplement when the amount of magnesium in the diet is not enough.

Magnesium Taurate

This type of magnesium is a compound of magnesium and taurine. There is some research that suggests it may have the potential to lower blood pressure and protect the cardiovascular system. Magnesium taurate is a form of magnesium that works well for athletes and those pursuing a healthy lifestyle alike. It aids relaxation, which makes it a go-to mineral when fatigue kicks in and stress takes over. It’s also great at rebooting energy levels and providing a better night’s sleep.

Choosing a Magnesium Product

When choosing magnesium products, there are several things that you should keep in mind:

  • How much magnesium you already consume in your diet
  • Whether a supplement or topical product is necessary
  • How much additional magnesium you need
  • Whether you want to take it as an oral supplement or topically

On average, an adult male should consume between 400 and 420 milligrams of magnesium every day while adult females should intake between 310 and 360 milligrams every day. The best way to determine how much magnesium you need to take each day is to ask your doctor.

Health Benefits of Magnesium

Magnesium plays a crucial role in the body, regulating blood pressure, blood sugar levels, neurotransmitters, and more. Taking magnesium may improve the following:

  • Sleep quality
  • Boost mental health
  • Ease muscle aches
  • Help you quit smoking
  • Boost vitamin D absorption
  • Support health during pregnancy
  • Promote bone health
  • Migraine
  • Asthma
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Diabetes and diabetic neuropathy
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Eclampsia and preeclampsia

Food Sources for Magnesium

Luckily, there are also some powerful food sources from which you can intake magnesium on a daily basis. Including one or more of these foods in your daily diet will help to ensure that you receive the right amount of magnesium every day.

  • Roasted pumpkin seeds
  • Chia seeds
  • Almonds
  • Boiled spinach
  • Cashews
  • Peanuts
  • Soy milk
  • Black beans

However, keep in mind that the body only absorbs around 30-40% of the dietary magnesium that a person consumes. This, combined with the relatively small amount of foods that contain high amounts of magnesium may make it challenging for some people to get enough of this nutrient from their diet.

Conclusion

Magnesium is essential for health. For some people, a magnesium supplement may be necessary to get enough of this mineral. Several types of magnesium are suitable as dietary supplements, such as magnesium citrate, glycinate, and lactate. Other kinds have topical uses, such as in baths or on the skin.

Always seek guidance from a doctor before you start taking a magnesium supplement or using a topical magnesium product because magnesium supplements are not always suitable for everybody.

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