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Magnesium's Supplements: A Comprehensive Guide to Its Effects and Dosage

Published : Nov 08, 2019 3 mins read Updated On : Nov 03, 2023

Magnesium is an element found in every organ in the human body. Magnesium plays a part in more than 300 reactions in the body. It is necessary to synthesize proteins, DNA and RNA. It plays a role in our metabolism, and cells use magnesium to transport calcium and potassium ions across the cell walls in the body. Optimal magnesium levels are key to nerve function, muscle contraction, heartbeat, and healthy bones.

Magnesium supplements are also claimed to improve athletic performance, decrease anxiety levels and treat sleep troubles including restless leg syndrome and insomnia. Low magnesium levels have been linked to osteoporosis, anxiety, irritability, depression and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Magnesium is a mineral that needs to be consumed in relatively large amounts, at least 200 milligrams (mg) per day. An adequate intake can help prevent problems with bones, the cardiovascular system, diabetes, and other functions in the body.
The following health benefits have been associated with magnesium:

1. Bone Health:

Magnesium is important for bone formation which helps assimilate calcium into the bone and plays a role in activating vitamin D in the kidneys. Optimal magnesium intake is associated with greater bone density, improved bone crystal formation, and a lower risk of osteoporosis after menopause in women.

2. Calcium Absorption:

Calcium and magnesium are important for maintaining bone health and preventing osteoporosis condition. Without magnesium, a high intake of calcium mineral can increase the risk of arterial calcification and cardiovascular disease, as well as kidney stones. Anyone who is taking calcium supplements should also take magnesium to ensure their calcium intake is properly metabolized in the body.

3. Heart Health

Magnesium is necessary to maintain the health of heart muscles, and for the transmission of electrical signals in the body.

Adequate magnesium intake has been associated with a lower risk of:

  •  atherosclerosis, a fatty buildup on the walls of arteries
  • hypertension, or high blood pressure

4. Migraine Headaches

Magnesium supplementation therapy may help prevent or relieve headaches, but the amount likely to be needed to make a difference is high. It should only be administered by a nutritionist.

5. Relieving Anxiety

Reductions in magnesium levels, or changes in the way that it is processed, have been linked to increased levels of anxiety. This appears to be related to activity in the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, a set of three glands that control a person's stress. It also helps promote good sleep.


Magnesium deficiency is rare, but it may affect if the diet is not balanced diet. It can result from excess consumption of alcohol, some health conditions, such as a gastrointestinal disorder, and the use of some medications.

Symptoms include:       

  •  loss of appetite
  •  nausea and vomiting
  •  fatigue and weakness

More advanced symptoms include:

  •  numbness and tingling
  •  muscle cramps
  •  seizures
  •  personality changes
  •  heart rhythm changes and spasms

Deficiency is linked to insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome, coronary heart disease, and osteoporosis, etc.

Magnesium Supplements: Effects, Side Effects and Dosage

Do Magnesium Supplements Work?

he recommended a daily intake of magnesium ranging from 300-400 milligrams, depending on age or gender. A healthy diet can easily provide enough magnesium. Whole grains, nuts, fish, meat, dark green vegetables, legumes, and many fruits, etc. contain significant amounts of magnesium.
A full-blown magnesium deficiency can cause nausea, fatigue, and weakness, etc. Severe magnesium deficiency may cause numbness, tingling, muscle contractions, seizures, abnormal heart rhythm and personality changes, etc. People with very low magnesium levels, or hypomagnesemia sometimes.

Magnesium deficiency can sometimes cause coronary spasms, a phenomenon in which the arteries that supply blood to the heart spasm and block blood flow. Dangerously low levels of magnesium can also result in low calcium (hypocalcemia), and low potassium (hypokalemia).

While magnesium supplements can certainly treat a magnesium deficiency, studies also show getting more magnesium than the bare minimum may help certain conditions.

Magnesium Supplements: Effects, Side Effects and Dosage

Are Magnesium Supplements Safe?

Few people overdose on minerals from food. However, it is possible to get too much magnesium from supplements. People with kidney problems are more likely to experience an overdose of magnesium. Symptoms of toxic magnesium levels can range from stomach issues and diarrhea to more serious symptoms of vomiting, confusion, slowed heart rate and dangerously low blood pressure, etc. Magnesium supplements can interact with several drugs. Taking magnesium too close to a dose of some antibiotics, including ciprofloxacin and moxifloxacin, with thyroid medications. may interfere with how the body absorbs the medicine.

Sayali Naik
Sayali Naik
Fast&Up Nutrition Consultant

Sayali works with a tons of people and players across the globe and across the sports disciplines, from grassroot to professional Cricketers, Football players, Badminton. Sayali is extremely passio... Read More

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