8 Types of magnesium and their benefits

Different types of magnesium can be supplied to the body either through food or dietary supplements. All of them have various advantages and disadvantages. Be it that they are particularly well suited for particular body functions or also in the way in which they are absorbed.

Magnesium is one of the most abundant minerals in the body. It plays a role in over 300 metabolic reactions, including energy production, protein formation, and blood pressure regulation. You can read more about the benefits of magnesium here.

Healthy people eating a balanced diet usually get enough magnesium through food, but certain life circumstances or illnesses can cause a magnesium deficiency. But what kind of magnesium is the right one? Let’s have a closer look at it.

What are the different types of magnesium and their benefits?

You will quickly realize that magnesium supplements come in various different types when looking for them. Although they are all similar in effectiveness, you should know the difference if you specifically want to support one or more functions in your body. The most common types of magnesium are:

1. Magnesium citrate

Magnesium citrate is a popular form of magnesium. It’s bound to citric acid (amino acid). This acid occurs naturally in citrus fruits and gives them their tart, sour taste.

Magnesium citrate is often a component of dietary supplements and is more easily absorbed by the body than some other forms. For example, it has better bioavailability than magnesium oxide and magnesium chelate.

It’s often used to treat constipation, which means when taken in high doses, it can also cause undesirable side effects such as diarrhea.

In addition, magnesium citrate is occasionally recommended as a sedative to help relieve symptoms related to depression, anxiety, and sleep problems. Combining magnesium citrate with vitamin D stimulates serotonin production, a hormone responsible for general well-being.

2. Magnesium lactate

Magnesium lactate is gentler on the digestive system than magnesium citrate. It may be better for those who cannot tolerate other forms or who need to take exceptionally high doses.

This type of magnesium is a combination of magnesium and lactic acid. It’s a salt that is formed when magnesium binds with lactic acid. Magnesium lactate is very easily absorbed in the intestine.

In addition to being produced by your muscle and blood cells, this acid is also used as a preservative and flavoring in food. It’s also often used as an additive to help regulate acidity and fortify foods and beverages. As a dietary supplement, it’s rarely used in a targeted manner.

This form of magnesium can also help treat stress and anxiety.

3. Magnesium malate

This type of magnesium is a combination of magnesium and malic acid. This occurs naturally in foods such as fruit and wine. This acid has a sour taste and is often used as a food additive to improve the taste or add acidity.

Magnesium malate is easily absorbed in the body and is less laxative than other forms. Therefore, it’s particularly suitable for people who want to replenish their magnesium balance but are sensitive to different types of magnesium. Magnesium malate is occasionally recommended to treat symptoms related to fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome.

4. Magnesium chloride

Magnesium chloride is a magnesium salt that contains chlorine – an unstable element that combines well with other factors, including sodium and magnesium, to form salts. These are found in magnesium products such as magnesium oils and bath salts. It’s often used as an alternative method to regulate magnesium levels. However, whether the magnesium is sufficient in large quantities to be absorbed through the skin is questionable. Applied topically, it can help relieve sore muscles, though.

However, magnesium chloride can also be taken orally in capsule or tablet form and helps with heartburn, constipation, and low magnesium levels. The intestine can absorb this form of magnesium very well, which in some cases can lead to digestive side effects such as diarrhea.

5. Magnesium sulfate

Magnesium sulfate is a combination of magnesium, sulfur, and oxygen. This form of magnesium is generally called Epsom salt. It’s often dissolved in baths and foot bath water to treat stress and sore muscles. However, if the body can absorb a lot of magnesium from magnesium sulfate baths is questionable.

Epsom salt is white with a texture similar to table salt. It can treat constipation, but its unpleasant taste leads many people to choose an alternative form to aid digestion. It’s also often used to cleanse the digestive tract before fasting.

Magnesium sulfate is used in some skincare products, such as lotions or body oils.

6. Magnesium oxide

Magnesium oxide is a salt that combines magnesium and oxygen. The white powder can be taken orally in capsule or powdered form. It’s commonly used to relieve digestive ailments such as heartburn and constipation. Since the body cannot absorb it well, it’s less suitable for controlling magnesium levels.

Some studies show that this form of magnesium can help relieve migraines because it relaxes the muscles. Tension, especially in the neck area, is often associated with severe headaches.

7. Magnesium taurate

This form of magnesium is a combination of magnesium and taurine. Magnesium taurate has the ability to regulate blood sugar levels and blood pressure. Therefore, this species is particularly suitable for supporting the cardiovascular system.

The body can absorb magnesium taurate very well, especially with the combination of vitamin B. In addition to the cardiovascular system, it also supports the brain, as it’s better supplied with blood and thus indirectly promotes memory.

8. Magnesium L-threonate

Magnesium L-threonate is a salt created by combining magnesium and threonic acid. It’s a water-soluble substance resulting from the metabolic breakdown of vitamin C.

This form of magnesium supports brain health and can help treat conditions such as depression and memory loss. Some early studies show that taking Magnesium-L-theonate can positively affect patients with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.

How do you choose the best magnesium product?

Below are some important points to consider when deciding on the right type of magnesium for yourself. But if you are still unsure, be sure to check out the following guide to the best magnesium supplements.

• How much magnesium have you already ingested with food?

• How much additional magnesium do you need?

• Whether the type of magnesium has a high bioavailability?

• What are the benefits of the type of magnesium?

• What side effects or interactions may there be?

Author’s Bio
Michelle Sinclair is a wellness enthusiast and writer specialising in natural health alternatives, supplements and nutrition.