- Posted by DanTomas
Topics discussed: Types of magnesium, bioavailability, and dosage
Discovered by Sir Humphrey Davy in 1808, we have come to know that magnesium is a mineral that most people suffer a deficiency from. This is due to its rapid depletion by modern standard diets and lifestyles. Indeed magnesium, after vitamin D3, is the 2nd most essential supplement for everyone across the board who are aiming for peak health.
If you adhere to a perfect organic based balanced diet, and are already at peak fitness then you will not have a magnesium deficiency. However modern diets cause deficiency over time due to inadequate vegetable intake of foods grown in mineral depleted soil. Alcohol and certain medicated drugs also have a big impact on your Mg status as they decrease abortion and increase renal secretion. Furthermore magnesium status declines as we age.
There are numerous types of magnesium because Mg can only exist naturally as a salt, meaning it is bonded to various other elements. These salts have wide ranging bioavailability, the most abundant and ineffectual form is Mg Oxide. Indeed elemental magnesium can be produced in a lab and if heated, it will simply burn to form magnesium oxide. It is cheap and abundant for the manufacturer but it has relatively poor bioavailability.
Studies have shown that organic magnesium salts have higher solubility, in other words they dissolve better in water. This translates into superior bioavailability. The most effective organic form has been found to be Mg Citrate. The only caveat is that the citrate version works by attracting water through tissue by osmosis, the result is a mild laxative effect. This is only an issue if you are megadosing above 1g/day or if you have a particularly sensitive stomach. If this is the case you should consider the Malate version listed below.
The optimum daily intake is 400mg which is can be delivered as 2 x 200mg tablets. Avoid soft gels with oils if possible as oils can become rancid at point of manufacture and sitting on your shelf for many months. As with all your vitamins keep a check on use-by dates and renew your vitamins like any other food.
Understanding the types of magnesium and the benefits of correct supplementation is essential part of a well planned antiageing strategy.