Types of Magnesium and Their Health Benefits

Magnesium is an essential mineral that’s involved in over 300 bodily functions. While many foods offer magnesium, 48% of Americans don’t consume enough through their diet.

Like other essential minerals, magnesium supplements are readily available—and there are different types for different needs. While some types are designed to supplement a magnesium deficiency, others aim to help with various health issues. Whether you’re looking to improve sleep, address digestive problems, or support your overall health, understanding the different magnesium types can help you make an informed decision.

What is Magnesium?

Magnesium is a mineral needed by every cell. It activates at least 350 different enzymes in the body, more than any other mineral, so it is crucial for many of the metabolic functions in the body. Low magnesium levels can cause metabolic functions to decrease, resulting in stress and reducing the body’s ability to absorb and retain magnesium.

Magnesium is well known for its ability to help maintain normal muscle and nerve function, heart rhythm, energy production and storage, and strong bones and teeth. Magnesium supports a calm state and assists with calcium and potassium uptake. It also aids in maintaining the body’s proper pH balance, blood pressure, and average body temperature.

Magnesium plays a role in the following bodily functions:

 Magnesium and nerve function

Magnesium is known to regulate or inhibit many nerve receptors. Without enough magnesium, nerves fire too quickly from even minor stimuli, creating pain sensitivity, especially in people with a low threshold. Magnesium also affects the nervous system by regulating the release of hormones.

• Magnesium and muscle function

Adequate magnesium is necessary for proper muscle functioning.
Magnesium deficiency promotes excessive muscle tension, leading to muscle spasms and restlessness. It supports the relaxation of both voluntary and involuntary muscle tissue.

• Absorption and mineral transporters (aspartates & citrates)

Absorption of minerals is a significant problem. All nutrients reaching the upper G.I. tract are not absorbed uniformly or adequately. Increasing and improving absorption is vital to good health.

To improve absorption of inorganic minerals, they must be bound to organic substances such as citric acid or aspartic acid. This is known as a chelated mineral. What’s essential about a chelating agent is its ability to form a complete ring around the mineral ion. Citric acid is a chelating agent that improves the absorption of minerals but does not form a complete ring.

Despite its importance, many people don’t consume enough magnesium. As people consume more processed foods, typically devoid of essential nutrients like magnesium, it becomes more challenging to consume adequate magnesium. Plants are also likely not absorbing enough magnesium because the soil they’re grown in is depleted. Insufficient magnesium consumption can result in a deficiency over time. This can lead to a range of health problems, including muscle weakness and cramps, tremors, headaches, anxiety, trouble sleeping, and irregular heartbeat.

Types of Magnesium

While obtaining adequate magnesium through a healthy diet is recommended, it cannot be easy to meet the requirement. In such cases, taking a magnesium supplement can help fill in gaps and ensure adequate intake. However, specific magnesium supplement formulations may be better absorbed than others.

With so many different types of magnesium supplements available, it can be challenging to know which one is right for you. Below is a list of magnesium supplements and their benefits and risks to help you choose the one that suits your needs.

Magnesium Oxide

Magnesium Oxide is a supplement that’s typically used for digestive issues. While it’s usually less expensive than other forms of magnesium, the body does not absorb it as well as other forms. It helps relieve indigestion, heartburn, and constipation but may cause cramping and diarrhea.

Magnesium Citrate

Magnesium Citrate is another popular supplement that is well absorbed by the body. Magnesium citrate is also used for relieving constipation but may cause loose or more frequent stools may occur.

Magnesium Sulfate

Magnesium sulfate is available as an oral supplement and in a powder form, commonly known as Epsom salts. As a soaking solution, magnesium sulfate may treat minor bruises and cuts. Soaking in an

Epsom salt baths may also help soothe sore muscles, promote relaxation, and relieve headaches.

Other Types of Magnesium

Magnesium Glycinate

The body readily absorbs this type of magnesium. Magnesium glycinate is one of the preferred magnesium supplements that may help with sleeplessness, tense muscles, and anxiety.

Magnesium L-threonate:

This form of magnesium can cross the blood-brain barrier, potentially benefiting brain health and cognitive function. It may also relieve sleeplessness, tense muscles, and anxiety.

Magnesium Malate:

This type of magnesium is easily absorbed by the body and is associated with decreased muscle pain.

Magnesium Chloride:

This form of magnesium is often used topically, in the form of lotions or oils, to support muscle and joint health.

To learn more about the types of magnesium and how they may benefit you, get a FREE Consultation with one of our doctors (D.C) here

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