7 Best Types of Magnesium Supplements - The Definitive Guide (NEW 2020 Research)

One magnesium supplement guide to rule them all…

“Hey VitaMonk, what’s the best magnesium supplement?”

We get this question almost daily. For us, the answer is simple, because we designed our ideal magnesium supplement from scratch!

But, besides that, let's go into WHY certain forms are better than others.

Magnesium is a vital mineral that supports functions like SLEEP, STRESS-CONTROL, PAIN RELIEF, and a number of other important functions.

But if you want to unlock the powerful benefits of magnesium, you need to take the right kind, know the right dosage, and make the right lifestyle changes. So it can get a bit complicated.

We get asked this question so often about supplements that we just decided to put EVERYTHING into one guide: What they do, how they work, the latest research, which ones you need according to your goals, and how to start living a better life one step a time.

VitaMonk Lifehack Bonus: We’ll share the strategies most people ignore that can take your supplement game to the next level and unlock even more benefits of magnesium.

By the end of this guide, you’ll know EXACTLY how to supplement magnesium the right way and start living better. You’ll even get the definitive answer to what you should take near the end.

What is magnesium

What is Magnesium and Why Should I Supplement it?

You probably know what magnesium is and what it does, but just to make sure we’re on the same page (and to prove we know what we’re talking about), let’s cover the basics..

Magnesium is a vital mineral that’s involved in nearly every important bodily process. You may have heard of some of these:

  • DNA
  • Sleep
  • Protein synthesis
  • Cognitive function
  • Stress-response
  • Blood sugar

  • In fact, it’s involved in more than 300 biochemical processes! [1]

    Magnesium helps maintain the immune, nervous, skeletal, and cardiovascular systems as well as your overall cognitive function. It helps you not get sick, helps you think, helps keep your heart beating, gives you the power to move around, and makes you smart.

    Basically, it helps you “life”.

    The problem is that your body doesn’t produce it. You can only get it from external sources.

    best sources of magnesium

    So Why Should I Supplement Magnesium Instead of Eating it?

    Good question....

    You COULD get it from your diet (we cover how to eat a diet that helps boost magnesium later), but that is getting harder and harder. In fact, our modern diet and lifestyle may require us to increase our intake even more.

    The proof is in the pudding. The National Institutes of Health reports that most Americans don’t consume enough magnesium through their diet [2], and this could lead to negative consequences.

    “An analysis of data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) of 2005–2006 found that a majority of Americans of all ages ingest less magnesium from food than their respective EARs” - NIH

    Magnesium inadequacy can lead to a number of negative side effects including problems sleeping, twitching, cognitive disorders like anxiety, fatigue, and other, more severe conditions.

    What Are the Symptoms of Magnesium Deficiency?

    magnesium deficiency symptoms

    The symptoms of magnesium deficiency are:

  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Chronic fatigue or weakness
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Brain fog
  • Chronic pain
  • Restless leg syndrome/twitching
  • Numbness or tingling
  • Constipation

  • NOTE: Unless you have certain conditions, magnesium deficiency is pretty rare. What’s more likely is that you just aren’t getting enough of it in your diet. Inadequacy or not meeting your regular daily intake is not the same as deficiency. However, inadequacy can still lead to chronic side effects.

    OK, now you know why you should supplement magnesium, so let’s explain HOW to do it right.

    What is the Best Magnesium Supplement?

    best magnesium supplements

    The best magnesium supplements are:

  • Magnesium Glycinate: This is one of the most bioavailable forms of magnesium, meaning it’s one of the best absorbed magnesium supplements. The glycine inside contains powerful relaxation benefits.
  • Magnesium L-Threonate: Developed specifically to easily pass the blood–brain barrier, L-threonate is easily absorbed and could help support healthy brain function as well as other cognitive benefits.
  • Magnesium Taurinate: Taurine plays a key role in the metabolism of calcium and supports a healthy cardiovascular system.
  • Magnesium Orotate: Has shown to improve the synthesis of glycogen in cells [3] and has shown to to aid in the replacement of Mg after depletion.
  • Magnesium Chloride: This is normally in topical cream form, and may have digestive benefits. Chances are it won’t be of consequence to you, though.
  • Magnesium Malate: Malic acid is key for energy production and has even demonstrated pain relief properties in the lab [4].
  • Magnesium Citrate: Magnesium citrate has shown to reduce inflammation, and has even demonstrated sleep benefits as well [5].

  • As you can see, the best option depends on your goals. 

    Some have more research than others, and some are more proven than others.

    If you are experiencing a certain issue, you should take an Mg supplement specifically for that condition so you get maximum benefit.

    That’s where things get tough.

    Which supplement is best for your condition?

    Here’s a list of the EXACT kind of magnesium you should take for different goals.

    The Best Magnesium Supplements According to Your Goals

    Want to sleep, support bone and muscle health, try to do something for your mood, or relax a bit?

    Then you need these specific magnesium supplements:

    The Best Magnesium Supplement for Sleep

    Best Magnesium Supplement for Sleep

    The best magnesium for sleep is magnesium glycinate. It is the most absorbable form of magnesium and it’s easy on the stomach. It’s the glycine content that helps you sleep, though. It plays a crucial role in the nervous system and promotes healthy, deep sleep.

    Just 3g of glycine daily helped improve sleep in patients with poor quality sleep (with zero side effects!) [6]. Taking it an hour before you go to sleep could help you fall asleep faster, stay asleep longer, and wake up actually wanting to get out of bed.

    The Best Form of Magnesium for Muscle Cramps

    Best Form of Magnesium for Muscle Cramps

    The best form of magnesium for muscle cramps is magnesium citrate. It is vital for your muscles and nerves, and promotes healthy bones, nerves, and energy production. In the lab, just 300 Mg of magnesium citrate resulted in a decrease of leg cramps in a randomized study [7].

    The Best Magnesium Supplement for Anxiety

    Best Magnesium Supplement for Anxiety

    The best magnesium for anxiety is magnesium threonate. Magnesium glycinate could also help.

    Threonate supports healthy brain function and regulates mood by passing the blood–brain barrier and increasing synapse density. As we said before, glycinate is key for relaxing the central nervous system and inducing sleep, but this could also have other powerful relaxation benefits.

    What Type of Magnesium for Muscle Pain?

    What Type of Magnesium for Muscle Pain

    The best magnesium for muscle pain is magnesium malate due to its effects on our cells and muscles. As mentioned in the study above, it helped decrease pain in patients with fibromyalgia, but more research is needed.

    What to do if You Want to Take a Magnesium Supplement for Everything?

    If you are experiencing multiple symptoms of inadequacy (high school all over again) or you just want to be as healthy as possible, you could take one single supplement complete with all of the best, most bioavailable forms of magnesium so it goes straight to your system and promotes a healthy mind and body.

    We happen to know an AWESOME company called VitaMonk that has an all-natural supplement made from proven forms of Mg. Why take multiple different supplements if you can get everything in one dose?

    The Best Magnesium to Take

    best form of magnesium

    The best magnesium to take, in our opinion, is one with all of the essential forms of magnesium so you get everything you need in one dose. And save money while getting all of the benefits.

    QUAD-MAGNESIUM contains all of the most potent forms of magnesium so you can do everything you need from promoting healthy sleep to regulating a healthy mood:

  • Magnesium Glycinate: For deep, healthy sleep.
  • Magnesium Malate: For energy production and healthy, powerful muscles.
  • Magnesium Taurinate: To promote a healthy cardiovascular system.
  • Magnesium Orotate: The master magnesium supplement - for overall health and regulating your levels of magnesium.

  • How to Take Your Magnesium Supplementation to the Next Level (the VitaMonk Way)

    how to take magnesium

    Life is a complex system of interlocking cycles. Stillness is an illusion.

    At any given time, your being is a struggle between counteracting forces that your body constantly seeks to balance. Nothing exists in a vacuum, especially not your body.

    There is no such thing as better sleep without action when you’re awake. There’s no pain relief without addressing the causes of your woes. Anxiety and depression could be mere symptoms of dozens of different interconnected physiological, spiritual, and psychological events and processes.

    Basically, what we’re saying is that simply addressing one thing (depression, insomnia, etc.) is not the best way to feel happier and healthier.

    Magnesium supplementation is no different.

    Pumping your body full of Mg will do very little good unless you’ve addressed the roots of the problem.

    Here’s how to optimize your life around supplementation to get the maximum benefits (including some awesome hacks we’ve learned).

    magnesium rich foods

  • Eat Magnesium-Rich Foods: Foods rich in magnesium are just as good as supplements. Dark greens, vegetables, beans, seafood, chocolate, and seeds make up a huge part of our diet. You should follow suit.
  • Avoid Caffeine and Alcohol As Much As Possible: Limiting caffeine and alcohol intake can CHANGE YOUR LIFE. Even a small dose of caffeine in the afternoon can severely affect your sleep patterns. Alcohol is even worse. Limit these two drugs and you’ll start feeling more energetic, happy, and social.
  • Exercise: This goes without being said. Exercise has a proven positive affect on sleep. Hit the gym hard and you’ll hit the pillow even harder.

  • VitaMonk Magnesium Hacks

    OK, we promised. Here are a few hacks that have taken our magnesium game to the next level.

  • Avoid Processed Sugars: High sugar intake encourages magnesium excretion. Abstaining from sugar is as good as adding magnesium into your system. Why not do both?
  • Chill Out: Prolonged stress is a killer. Exercise, meditate, do yoga, take a nap - do whatever it takes to rest.
  • Turn Off the Screen: As soon as your done reading this article and sharing it with everyone you know, shut down the screen. Over exposure to media kills magnesium levels by increasing stress. You don’t need that.
  • Vitamin D3 and Calcium: Both of these substances pair with magnesium nicely, and can even increase absorption of Mg.

  • References

    [1] https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/002423.htm

    [2] https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Magnesium-HealthProfessional/

    [3] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16366126

    [4] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8587088

    [5] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21199787

    [6] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7815675

    [7] https://www.medscimonit.com/abstract/index/idArt/420841/act/3

    Updated January 27, 2020

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