Did you know that magnesium plays an important role in over 300 of your bodily functions? How incredible is that! This essential mineral is crucial in converting the nutrients we get from food into usable energy for our body.
Magnesium deficiency can cause your calcium and potassium levels to decrease, and even cause symptoms such as headaches, loss of appetite, fatigue and weakness.
The body does not naturally produce magnesium, which means we have to rely on food and magnesium supplements for a sufficient intake. The best way to prevent magnesium deficiency, is to maintain a diet rich in whole foods. Make it your priority before opting for magnesium supplements.
But before you start purchasing magnesium supplements however, it’s important to first understand the different types of magnesium.
It is increasingly harder to get adequate magnesium through the modern diet alone, as food is heavily processed prior to consumption. If you’re not eating a balanced, organic (where possible), wholefood diet, magnesium supplements could be necessary.
There are many forms of magnesium and magnesium supplements available today — and each type of magnesium has different properties.
They vary in terms of their:
Magnesium citrate is a very popular formulation. It is usually bound with citric acid, which is commonly found in citrus fruits and gives them a sour flavour.
A great way to ensure a regular intake of magnesium citrate is to consume Vitable’s magnesium capsules! All you need is 2 capsules per day and you’re good to go.
Chlorine is a rather unstable element that can bind well with plenty of its fellow elements. This includes binding with magnesium to form a salt called magnesium chloride.
Like magnesium citrate, this form of the mineral can be absorbed by the digestive tract easily.
Although magnesium chloride is commonly used in topical products like skin cream, more studies are needed to show if this method can really improve levels of magnesium in the body. It remains unclear on whether the skin is capable of absorbing much magnesium through such products.
Another form of magnesium is magnesium oxide, which is a combination of magnesium and oxygen. It comes as a powder-white substance, which can be sold as is or in the form of a capsule.
However, this form can’t be absorbed easily by the digestive tract and is usually used as a laxative. Its key effect is to soften hard stools and help with constipation.
This is a byproduct combining malic acid — something that can be found in fruits and wine, with magnesium. Malic acid commonly tastes sour, so it can be used as an additive in food to enhance flavours, or increase its levels of acidity.
Magnesium malate can be absorbed easily by the digestive tract.
This form of magnesium comes with lactic acid. Lactic acid is an acid that your body can produce on its own in the muscles and blood cells, but it can also be manufactured.
Manufactured lactic acid is usually used in preservatives and as a flavouring agent. Its main purpose is to regulate the acidity of certain foods and beverages. It is easily absorbed by the digestive system, and has proven easier to absorb compared to other kinds of magnesium.
Orotic acid is great for energy production — that’s why as a magnesium supplement, it is quite popular among athletes and those inclined to fitness programmes. It has also been seen to improve exercise tolerance in people with chronic heart disease.
Magnesium taurate is the combination of magnesium and the amino acid taurine. They are both key players in the regulation of a person’s blood sugar levels, which is why this combination also supports healthy blood pressure.
However, there are not enough studies that can support its efficacy in people just yet.
Magnesium sulfate is the product of combining sulfur, oxygen, and magnesium. It is more commonly known as epsom salt. It has a texture similar to table salt, but has a much more unpleasant taste.
People usually dissolve epsom salts in bath water, with some doctors suggesting that adding epsom salts in your bath may help treat magnesium deficiency. Skincare products such as lotions and body oils may also have this as an ingredient.
When you mix magnesium with threonic acid, you get a water-soluble salt that can be derived from the breakdown of vitamin C.
This form is very easily absorbed by the body. It is known to possibly support brain health, especially with the treatment of disorders such as depression and memory loss. However, more studies are required for further understanding of its effects and results.
Combining magnesium with the amino acid glycine forms what people know as magnesium glycinate. Glycine is usually present in the body for protein construction, which makes the two a perfect match as both can be found in protein and fibre-rich foods.
Magnesium glycinate is something you can easily absorb. However, like the L-threonate variant, more scientific studies are needed to observe its concrete effects on a person’s bodily functions.
Keep in mind that you should only turn to magnesium supplements when your magnesium deficiency concerns are not solved by changing your diet. Whole foods have the power to correct your levels of magnesium, so consider getting supplements only if your diet isn’t working well.
But what should you include in your diet to increase your intake of magnesium? Fret not, we’ve got you covered.
Your first step towards reaching proper magnesium levels is to make adjustments to your diet. However, this may not be enough. At least 1 in 3 Australians do not get enough magnesium.
If your diet does not improve your magnesium deficiency, or if you are experiencing health problems that may be causing magnesium deficiency, then it may be time to consider magnesium supplements.
Take note that excessive magnesium intake can cause side effects like cramping, diarrhoea, and nausea — and in some cases, irregular heartbeats. According to the Nutrient Reference Values for Australia and New Zealand, this is how much magnesium adults need daily:
There are also certain medicines that do not work well with magnesium supplements. Always seek medical advice from a dietician or doctor prior to supplementation.
Some types of magnesium supplements are better than others. Seek advice from your healthcare practitioner on what’s best for you. Finding the right kind of formulation will differ for each person as we all have unique body chemistry.
Consider the form of magnesium you want to take and research it if your doctor recommends it. The dosage is important as well, as you can’t have too much or too little. Product quality is also important, so make sure your supplements come from a trusted source.
Magnesium that can be absorbed more easily include:
Magnesium oxide and magnesium sulfate are the two types that aren’t as well absorbed by the digestive tract as the ones mentioned above.
If you’re completely lost on where to get your supplements from, we’d recommend Vitable!
Vitable’s magnesium supplement comprises magnesium citrate which is highly bioavailable, meaning your body can absorb and use it easily. It also helps support muscle relaxation, nervous system health, brain function, energy levels and heart health.
Apart from getting magnesium supplements, you can also get home-compostable supplement packs delivered straight to your doorstep monthly, for fuss-free ease. Made from premium quality ingredients backed by science and proudly made in Australia, there’s no reason to resist.
Get your custom packs today by just answering a short online quiz. Or find out more about our vitamins and supplements below:
*Always read the label. Follow the directions for use. If symptoms persist, talk to your health professional. Vitamin and/or mineral supplements should not replace a balanced diet.