Magnesium supplements are not all the same.
Magnesium supplements come in a variety of forms or ‘salts’. Examples include magnesium chloride, magnesium oxide, magnesium citrate, magnesium orotate and magnesium glycinate. While all of these salts can provide the body with elemental magnesium, they vary in one important way. That is, they differ in how well they are absorbed from the gut.
This is important for two reasons. Firstly, and most obviously, the more magnesium that gets absorbed the more the tissues of the body receive. Secondly, if the magnesium does not get absorbed it stays in the digestive tract and works as a laxative. This can impair the absorption of other nutrients by decreasing the time they have to be absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract. As little as around 5% of supplemental Magnesium oxide (one magnesium salt) may be absorbed. Epsom salts is an effective laxative because of the magnesium it contains (Magnesium sulfate).
Magnesium glycinate, on the other hand, contains magnesium bound to glycine, a non-essential amino acid. It is absorbed extremely readily (up to 95%) because the body absorbs it as if it were an amino acid – a building block of protein. Because it is so well absorbed, it has a very minimal laxative effect.
Magnesium glycinate is an excellent choice for deficiency, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, nerve pain, chronic pain, muscle cramps and also to help improve mood.
A further advantage of magnesium in its glycinate form is the glycine amino acid component. Glycine has been shown to have a calming effect on the nervous system, enhancing the effect of the magnesium. In addition, glycine helps remove mercury from the body by a process called chelation. Mercury can lead to emotional instability and is often found in very minute quantities in ocean derived fish oils.
Many commercial products use mixtures of magnesium salts that save in manufacturing costs. Furthermore, many supplements are accompanied by dubious claims and very weak research.
If you are seeking a superior Magnesium supplement, or are getting unpleasant side effects from your current magnesium supplements, let us help you.