Maximize Health with Magnesium: Key Benefits & Sources

| Modified on Apr 07, 2024
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Posted by Mama To Many (Tennessee) on 08/30/2016

I have made some observations about magnesium that I thought I would share.

I have been taking magnesium powder (Natural Calm) at night for a long time. I take about 500 mg this way and it helps me to sleep and keeps my digestion regular. One night recently, I had had a snack and didn't want to drink the amount of water I would need to take my magnesium powder. I have some Nature's Way Magnesium capsules so I took two of those instead, which was a total of 800 mg of magnesium. I wondered if this would cause diarrhea because if I took that much Natural Calm, it surely would have. Well, it did not; in fact, the next day my digestion was noticeably slow. Whether it is because Natural Calm is a more absorbable form of magnesium (magnesium citrate) than the other, which was magnesium oxide, or something else, I do not know. But what that means is that not all magnesium supplements are equal. If one form of magnesium isn't working for you as you might hope, try another.

Secondly, I got lazy this week and skipped a few days of magnesium oil on my back at bedtime. Even with an oral magnesium supplement, if I skip the topical magnesium oil I wake up with stiffness. I made sure to use my magnesium oil last night and can really tell a difference - I was much less stiff when I woke up today. Some people find that topical magnesium affects the bowels, but it doesn't in my case, at least in the amount I use. But what is interesting to note is that internal use of magnesium does not have nearly the same benefit to me to reduce pain and stiffness that topical magnesium does.

What does this mean? If you want to use magnesium for a health problem, you may need to experiment with amounts you use as well as the brand you use, as well as the way you deliver it to your body (orally or through the skin.) And it seems there is no one size fits all. I guess this is where healing takes on its art form. There is a science to healing, but it isn't a once size fits all deal. Each individual is complex and unique in his needs, thus the art aspect of healing.

So, that is my two cents worth of musing on magnesium today...

~Mama to Many~

Posted by Moira (Cork, Ireland) on 12/06/2009

I suffer from arthritis (especially in the hands) and for years I have been taking Glucosomine daily to try and ease the pain but, with little relief. A friend recommended I try Magnesium instead. Whilst on holiday I bought own brand Magnesium Oxide capsules from a branch of (beginning with R). I have been taking one 500mg capsule of Magnesium oxide each morning after breakfast for about 5 months without any side effects. After 1 month the pain and swelling decreased dramatically and now I have little or no pain in the joints.

Posted by Doris (Murfreesboro, TN) on 12/05/2007

My son suffered from anxiety and depression after his divorce. I read an article by George Eby about Magnesium Glycinate for depression. I bought my son some of the magnesium and after a few days he started feeling better and talked about having more energy and concentration. He took 800-1000 mgs. for a few days to build it up in his system, then backed down to 400 mgs. The Magnesium Glycinate really changed his life.

Posted by Dave (Fountain Inn, Sc) on 01/02/2014

Hey Mike 62,

Thanks for your response to my response to Legna.

Legna had asked where to get Mag Chloride.

I told her and elaborated that there are numerous magnesiums, so the magnesium chloride would not be the only magnesium that would help with A Fib.

Your response was to criticize isolates as opposed to whole foods ... if I understood you correctly. I re-read her question and my response and the issue was very narrow. Your response was not the issue but nonetheless I'll speak to your viewpoint.

Isolated minerals, isolated vitamins, isolated glandular etc are in my opinion highly effected and in high doses often therapeutic and cannot be obtained in a whole food approach. Niacin, for instance, at fairly high levels is an excellent dilator and can be effective in warding off migraines.

Vitamin E (natural) the same for the cardio system.

Mike, I do consume an effective whole green drink and have been a whole food advocate for nearly 40 years and yet...I also use isolates.

Colloidal Silver is an isolate. One has to get it to high enough levels to make it I just don't paint with so broad a brush as to eliminate the effectiveness of particular nutrients. I'm both "old school" and "new school." I'm a pragmatist and will use what works.

Best to you and wish you good health in 2014!!!

Posted by Arcticlily (Anchorage, Ak, Usa) on 07/07/2012

I've had incontinence about 6 years. Less than a week ago I read about magnesium for incontinence on this site. Within two days I was out walking hills without needing to make pit stops and without leaking. I haven't leaked a drop since taking the magnesium. I just spent $1000 co-pay to hear from the urologist that my options were surgery or physical therapy. I'm so disturbed that my gyn or urologist didn't know the benefits of magnesium, but I'm so thankful for this site and all that participate. I have a new lease on life because I can exercise again. Thanks!

Posted by Lorena (Usa) on 10/09/2015

I started having laryngospasms last May 17th due to a bronchitis and virus I believe... cough wake me up at midnight chooking and searching in different blogs. Read that someone got cured using magnesium, and I started using magnesium and no more spasms. I'd like to spread this information to anyone that suffer with this condition, because is horrible feeling thinking that you are gonna die... so you can take magnesium glycinate... I took around 400 mg and after a week no more spasms....

Posted by Mike 62 (Denver, Colorado) on 01/01/2014

Dave: 100 year old poor peasants living in 3rd world countries make worm casting tea. The man who won a 100 mile race against a horse eats vegetable soup. Apollo won nine gold medals in the winter olympics. He takes colostrum. Ron Teagarden takes fermented adaptogens. They don't take isolates. There are many websites that explain why isolates are not effective, like mini minerals, and fulvic acid is necessary for mineral absorption to name a couple. Some say the molecule is too big and some say because they are inorganic. Gardeners don't put isolates on their plants. They put compost. Nutrients are like a world class symphony. All the musical instruments have to be there in the proper ratio, finely tuned, and with great musicians.

Leg Cramps
Posted by Lena (Tallahassee, Florida) on 01/24/2011

Your body when it produces leg cramps or restless leg syndrome usually means the body is low on magnesium. I suffer from this same thing and when I take a magnesium supplement the pain goes away

Multiple Cures
Posted by Janet (Louisville, Co, Usa) on 12/30/2009

Late last August I started having Basilar Migraines with auras at least once a day. Some days I had up to three a day. I read that magnesium helped, but that it could take months of supplementing with magnesium to get the benefits for migraines unless it was put directly into your system with an IV. Because not being able to see clear interferred with my job, not to mention driving, I needed something right away.

I did some research and found that magnesium is not readily absorbed by the body but that in it's ionic form the absorbtion rate is close to 100%. Therefore, you benefit much more quickly by taking it in this form.

I purchased some ionic magnesium and started taking from .5 - .7 ml twice a day. I think the dosage can be increased according to weight and height. I add it to about 1/4 cup of water and drink it first thing in the morning and about a half hour before my evening meal. It's best to take it on an empty stomach. Within the first few days, the migraines were much less severe and didn't last as long. By the second week, I only had one. Since then I've only had three migraines and four months into using the magnesium, I've been migraine free now for over two months.

In addition, it has cleared up a number of other things. I have suffered from IBS for over 15 years, and a couple years ago found that taking dessicated porcine thyroid helped considerably and thought that the IBS was caused from low T-3 and T-4 thyroid enzymes. However, it never totally eliminated the IBS. I also read that people who are low in Thyroid are also deficient in Magnesium. Hence the low thyroid and the IBS has also been cleared up by using the Liquid Ionic Magnesium and I no longer have the need to supplement with the dessicated thyroid.

A few other things that I found has cleared up with the use of magnesium are brain fog, mood swings, acid reflux (haven't taken an anti-acid in months now), food allergies, increased energy, and now, well into winter, there are no aches and pains from arthritis. My son even claims that I look five years younger, which could be because I'm not in constant pain.

I have been filtering my water for a couple of years, but never thought about supplementing with minerals and I should have. However, I think I've always been low in magnesium, and despite what the acceptable levels of magnesium are, I feel some people need more than others. I can't praise this mineral loud and long enough, as it's benefits have pretty much given me back a normal life.

Posted by Anna (Dayton, OH) on 07/10/2009

I take two 200 or 250 mgs of magnesium every night to help me sleep. I have tried other products to help me sleep like phosphorus and melatonin. Phosporus is also very good but makes me too groggy when I wake up. Melatonin also makes me too groggy. I take Melatonin when I have had caffiene before bed and it knocks me out. I get the tablets and nibble the tiniest bit off of the edge and it works everytime but seems to be too strong for me and makes me tired during the day. For me magnesium is gentle and when I wake up I feel relaxed but not tired. We stayed overnight in New York City at my daughters boyfriends apt on a busy, noisy, avenue. I took my two magnesiums as usual but woke up in the middle of the night because of the terrible street noises. The next few nights I took 3 magnesiums (200 or 250mg's)and slept thru it all. At home I take two every night. Thank you so much for this website!! People helping People!! YaY people power!

Magnesium and Vitamin D
Posted by Tristan (Driggs, Wyoming) on 02/13/2009

Should Magnesium Be Taken With Calcium?

I have just started taking magnesium citrate after reading about all its benefits on this site. Today a health practitioner told me that I should be taking calcium along with it otherwise the magnesium would not be absorbed.

But I stopped taking calcium supplements after reading about it on this site, and especially how Ted feels strongly that it is not necessary for adults to take this.

Now I am thoroughly confused! Would someone please help me about what is correct?

Magnesium and Vitamin D
Posted by Bryan (Canada) on 09/12/2021

I agree with Ted.. Take Vitamin D instead, we get plenty of calcium in our modern diet.. supplementing with it can lead to problems. Calcium and magnesium compete with each other. I over supplemented on calcium for a while and that pushed my mag levels so low that my heart was really acting up. Scary. But that's what mainstream was promoting for bones and arthritis, it almost killed me. Ted knows what he is talking about. I would trust his advice over my neighbor.

Multiple Cures
Posted by Carrie (Livonia, Mi) on 04/06/2015

Chelated magnesium has changed my life. Since starting the supplement I have slept SO much better, less irritable, numbness in my fingertips gone, red nose and red ears reduced, heartburn reduced, anxiety has been reduced, and my life long allergies that have been unbearable have completely subsided in just one week on the supplement. I'm generally a sharp person and wouldn't have believed my quality of life would change from a supplement!

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Posted by Alfonso (Baltimore, Maryland, Usa) on 08/23/2014

After many hours of reading I bought the Borax and just started using it. I have had osteoarthritis in my thumbs for some time and it is slowly getting worse. Let's see what happens. However, my purpose here is to tell you about Magnesium. I have been using it for a long time but it didn't do me any good until I came upon a different form that has not been mentioned here. It is very hard to assimilate it in pill form. What I am using with success is Ionic magnesium citrate which is a powder that gets dissolved in a bit of hot water. It fizzles and the magnesium disappears into the water. This way it gets completely absorbed. Very effective. I get it in the USA, I don't know about its availability in other countries. I guess I am not supposed to mention brands, but I only know the one I am using. So, its not a tablet or a capsule or an oil, it is a drink. Hope this helps.

Multiple Cures
Posted by Kate (Oregon City, Oregon) on 04/28/2012

I was utterly floored to learn that high blood pressure, racing heart, insomnia, foot and leg cramps and even osteoporosis were all symptomatic of magnesium deficiency. Since I've got them all, I decided I definitely needed more magnesium and then quickly learned that 500 mg in oral supplements is about my limit before diarrhea and intestinal cramping sets in.

So yeah, transdermal magnesium applications make sense to me. I haven't located a local source for Nigari (mag. Chloride) yet, but did get some Epsom salts. (mag. Sulphide)

I tried making the oil with Epsom Salt and spraying it on but my skin really stung from the application. Then I did a little more research and found one site that gave instructions on combining Epsom Salts with coconut oil to make a cream and massaging it into your skin. I used about ½ cup salts to 1/4 cup boiling water, (stirred a bunch and microwaved it until it was all dissolved good) which made a really thick "oil. " I keep this in a plastic container in the fridge until I'm ready for my "transdermal magnesium massage."

When I'm ready, I use 1 tbs. of Epsom Salts oil to 1 tbs. of coconut oil and mix it all up together real good in a small bowl, just using my fingers. It makes a light creamy mixture.

When I applied it, it didn't sting my skin and the cream was completely absorbed in less than twenty minutes, leaving my skin feeling soft and silky.

The spray oil irritated my skin, but the coconut oil and Epsom salt cream worked superbly. And it's so easy too! I can use it right after I take a shower or massage it into my feet, calves and arms while sitting in front of the TV.

I've combined this with my "Naked Bloody Mary blood pressure drink" which I consume faithfully now twice a day. It's 1 8oz glass of low sodium V-8 juice (820 mg. Of potassium! ) to which I add 1/4 to ½ tsp. Cayenne pepper, ½ tsp garlic powder, and 2 tsp celery seed (and a slosh or two of Worcestershire sauce if 'ya want). Yep. It's dang hot but I'm getting used to it cuz' it works! (Potassium, garlic, cayenne and celery seed are all known helps for lowering blood pressure.)

After using this regimen just one week my blood pressure has dropped from 135/80 to 122/75! No more foot cramps and no more racing heart either!

Thank God! There IS hope and it sure ain't big Pharma!

General Feedback
Posted by Jerry (Seal Beach, Ca) on 12/01/2011

Please read my Hawthorn Motherwort entry under Heart Palpitations or my Mothewort Hawthorn entry under Tachycardia. Good chance the latter will be of help if you use it.

General Feedback
Posted by Bill (San Fernando, Luzon, Philippines) on 10/13/2010

Hi Grannyguru... I've been taking Magnesium in various forms for several years now. Magnesium Chloride IV is usually the first thing that they give heart attack patients in hospital ER to lower blood pressure and to relax the heart muscle and lower blood pressure. Magnesium is also essential to regulate body Calcium against the other electrolytes -- Sodium and potassium -- in your blood and cells. Magnesium is also used in over 300 enzyme processes in your body, so its a very important mineral. Most of us lack proper magnesium levels in our body now because of diet.
In answer to you questions:

Should I take it with meals or on empty stomach?
I always take magnesium on an empty stomach. The best forms to take are Mag Chloride, Mag Citrate and Mag Gluconate -- these are the most soluble and absorbable forms. Avoid magnesium carbonate and magnesium hydroxide -- they are badly absorbed by the body. My own favourite now is Magnesium Chloride. See this link:

Should I dilute it?
I make my own Magnesium Oil(70%-80% magnesium chloride crystals and 20%-30% water) and just take 10 drops once or twice a day in a glass of water or orange juice and drink it. Or you can also just rub the magnesium oil onto your forearm to be absorbed transdermally. You can also take it in larger doses quite safely transdermally with no intestinal or diarrhea issues. You can buy magnesium oil in most health shops.

Should I take it with calcium or get just magnesium. I am taking the angstrom sized magnesium for 100% absorbtion without diarrhea. Is that good?
Western diets these days contains excess calcium anyway -- everything is now fortified with calcium nowadays so I would just avoid taking calcium supplements altogether. This what I did, and, together with taking magnesium -- this is what got rid of my own arrythmia problems in the past. Excess calcium also thickens the blood, makes your heart work harder and also acidifies your blood and cells if you are low magnesium or potassium.
Am I supposed to hold it beneath my tongue or swallow it?
Best to take it just as an oral supplement or transdermally as suggested. Magnesium sulphate(Epsom Salts) can also be used transdermally for magnesium intake.

Recipe for Magnesium-Rich Drinking Water
Posted by Bill (San Fernando, Philippines) on 02/05/2010

Hi Everyone...I've been drinking Magnesium Water for the past 3 months. I create a litre of Mag Water from plain soda water and Phillip's Milk of Magnesia(no aluminium) according to this recipe here:


The chemical formula is Mg(OH)2 plus (CO2)2 --> Mg(HCO3)2

Step 1: CHILL COMPLETELY TO REFRIGERATOR TEMPERATURE A 1 LITER BOTTLE OF "FULLY CARBONATED" WATER. Carbonated waters such as "Canada Dry Seltzer" which consist of only water and carbon dioxide (CO2) are suitable. "Club sodas" such as "Schweppes Club Soda" are also suitable; they are carbonated water with a small amount of added sodium.

Step 2: SHAKE WELL A BOTTLE OF PLAIN MILK OF MAGNESIA (MoM), THEN MEASURE OUT AS ACCURATELY AS POSSIBLE 3 TBS (45 ml) AND HAVE IT READY. The plastic measuring cup that comes with the MoM is accurate and ideal for the purpose. Use only plain MoM without flavorings, sweeteners, mineral oil, or other additives. The "active ingredient" should be only magnesium hydroxide (Mg(OH)2), 400 mg per teaspoon (5 ml), and the "inactive ingredient" should be only purified water. 41.7% by weight of magnesium hydroxide is magnesium (Mg), so 1 teaspoon of MoM has 167 mg of Mg, and 1 tablespoon (TBS) has 500 mg of Mg (1 TBS = 15 ml).

Step 3: REMOVE THE BOTTLE OF CARBONATED WATER FROM THE REFRIGERATOR WITHOUT AGITATING IT. REMOVE THE CAP SLOWLY AND CAREFULLY TO MINIMIZE THE LOSS OF CO2. SLOWLY ADD THE PREMEASURED MoM, THEN PROMPTLY REPLACE THE CAP. Next, shake the bottle vigorously for 15 to 30 seconds, making the liquid cloudy. After 1/2 hour or so the liquid will have cleared, and any un-dissolved Mg-hydroxide will have settled to the bottom of the bottle. Again shake the bottle vigorously for 15 to 30 seconds, making the liquid cloudy again. When the liquid again clears all of the Mg hydroxide in the MoM should have reacted with all of the CO2 to become dissolved (ionized) magnesium and bicarbonate. However, if a small amount of un-dissolved Mg hydroxide still remains in the bottom of the bottle as a sediment it may be ignored. This 1 liter of concentrated magnesium bicarbonate water will have 1,500 mg of magnesium and 7,500 mg of bicarbonate. This concentrate must be diluted in order to be "WW".

Step 4: DILUTE THIS CONCENTRATE 11:1 TO MAKE DRINKABLE MAGNESIUM/BICARBONATE WATER (WW). To make 4 liters of WW measure and transfer 1/3 liter of the concentrate (333 ml) into a 4 liter container. Fill the container with 3 2/3 liters of plain, preferably purified water. Or, prepare a single glassful of WW by adding 11 ounces of water to 1 ounce of the concentrate. This drinkable water will have approximately 125 mg of Mg and 625 mg of bicarbonate per liter, at pH ~8.3. Other dilutions of the concentrate may of course be made, if so desired.
Taken from here:

The effects of drinking cups of this Mag water throughout the day have been very positive. My BM has become more regular, no more cramps and I don't get so tired -- no longer have a nap in the afternoons now. But the most remarkable effect is that I sleep so well and always wake up early full of energy, happy, aware and wide-awake with no aches or pains(I'm 60 y o).No brain fog or grogginess. Magnesium seems to have a wonderful effect on the brain for sure.

For the past month I have also added 2 teaspoons of sea salt and 1/4 teaspoon of borax to one litre of the Mag Water according to Ted's Remedy Combination Rules here:

I added the sea salt and borax to this Mag Water because the sea salt supplies many other essential body minerals and also acts as an powerful antibiotic. The borax acts as an super-effective anti-fungal, a hormone balancer, and is also very good for the bones.

My next project is to put together a simple detox drink to be taken for short periods only and based on water, to get rid of heavy metals, dangerous halides and other food poisons from the body. I'll use Sodium Thiosulhate, Borax, Iodine, Tannic Acid etc as specified on this site by Ted. I'm researching their safety in combination right now. Perhaps Ted, with his vast knowledge of chemicals, could help here, since I'm finding this a little hard going at the moment.

What I want to do is just to make up another simple drink based on just water that can easily detox heavy metals, aluminium, halides and poisons from my body in one go. This drink to be taken occasionally and only when needed, for short periods of 3-4 days only.

Posted by Kathy (New Brunswick) on 08/05/2018

I have realized just this weekend that my daily evening magnesium malate or citrate supplementation is likely *paradoxically* at least partially responsible for insomnia issues I've been facing. I went off the supplement for a week because I ran out and was amazed at how well I was sleeping without it. I got a new supply of magnesium malate, took (~200 mg elemental Mg) at 9 pm on a Friday. My brain was "on" at bedtime -- could not fall asleep until after 3 am. Weekend ruined! I slept a little better Saturday night w/o supplementation, hopefully will be able to get back to where I was before Friday.

I say paradoxically because Mg has in the past definitely been a HELP for falling asleep, and it has also helped me to overcome migraine pain. A few articles online show I am not the first to notice this issue.

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Posted by Jb (Ny) on 09/21/2015

Liquid Chlorophyll is a much safer way to supplement with magnesium. Too much magnesium in tablet form will deplete essential trace minerals from your body. This happened to my husband he now only uses liquid chlorophyll for a magnesium supplement 1/4 to 1/2 tsp a day and hasnt had any problems since.

Low Magnesium Indicator
Posted by Joy (Battleground, Wash) on 04/28/2013

I looked into someone's eyes and there was a spot on the colored part that was turning grey and the rest was green, almost like the color had washed out. One of my friends is a nurse and I showed her and she gave the person a magnesium IV and her eye color was restored and her other health conditions that doctors had not been able to solve were healed with the IV magnesium. She was very low and sufferring miserably. They don't test mag levels when they do your blood tests.