by Timothy M. Marshall, Ph.D. Neuropharmacologist, Nutritional Biochemist NorthStar Neurology PC, Tucson, AZ Chief Science Officer at FoodPharma
Widespread Magnesium Deficiency
The scientific literature provides extensive evidence of magnesium deficiency in many populations around the world. Dietary intakes of magnesium in the United States have been declining over the last 100 years from about 500 mg/day to 175–225 mg/day. Epidemiological studies in Europe and North America have shown that people consuming Western-type diets are typically low in magnesium, supplying less than 30%–50% of the RDA for magnesium1. Studies have shown that nearly two-thirds of the population in the western world is not receiving the recommended daily allowance for magnesium, a deficiency contributing to a wide-variety of health conditions such as chronic fatigue, depression, anxiety, irritability, ADHD/ADD, insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome, muscle weakness, tremors, chronic pain, headaches, and sleep problems.1-3
A Powerful Protective Shield
Magnesium has been called the body’s primary “anti-stress” mineral because of its mood-boosting, calming effect on the brain and nervous system1-6. As a fundamental brain nutrient, it serves important neuroprotective functions in the body, and acts as a vital “protective shield” against environmental toxins and stress7-9. Magnesium serves as an essential co-factor in over 300 enzymes and neurotransmitter systems and has been shown to boost mood, reduce neuro-inflammation, decrease oxidative stress (i.e. slow the aging process), promote vitamin utilization, increase toxin clearance, promote increased blood flow and nutrient delivery through its vasodilatory effects, possess powerful cardioprotective benefits, improve symptoms of ADHD, and promote healthy brain function1-11.
With all of its many benefits, magnesium works best in combination with other nutrients such as chromium12, and the B-complex vitamins13-16. Together, they exert powerful, beneficial effects on mood, focus, stress tolerance, and inflammation1-15. Magnesium is an essential cofactor for the proper utilization of thiamine (B1)13-15 and pyridoxine (B6)16.17, and research suggests that vitamin B6 may also be required for proper magnesium uptake into cells17.
Supplemental Forms of Magnesium
There are 5 primary inorganic forms of magnesium: Mg-bicarbonate, chloride, oxide, phosphate, and sulfate AND more than 10 organic forms of magnesium including Mg-amino acid chelate, aspartate, citrate, gluconate, glycinate, malate, orotate, taurinate (taurate), and threonate.
So, which is the BEST FORM? The answer to that is…it depends on the reason you’re taking it.
For example, if you’re looking for the best forms of magnesium for promoting restful sleep and relaxation, magnesium glycinate and taurinate are two of the best forms for these indications. Other forms of magnesium such as magnesium citrate also work – it’s just that with the extra glycine and taurine (both calming amino acids) that these forms provide – gives them an added boost to magnesium’s natural calming, stress-relieving activity.
Supports Your “Feel-Good” Neurotransmitter Systems
Magnesium in all of its various forms supports the optimal function and activity of your “feel good” neurotransmitters, which include serotonin, GABA, dopamine, oxytocin, and the opioid/endorphin system. When the body is deficient in magnesium, these finely tuned systems can under-function and get out of balance.
In addition to magnesium, there are a number of nutrients that enhance “feel-good” molecules and neurotransmitters in your body such as high-quality protein, carbohydrates, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin C, B-complex, vitamin D, copper, chromium, magnesium, molybdenum, selenium, iodine, and zinc.
HempMag Product Suite
Our HempMag line of high-performance brain and nutritional supplements features two highly-bioavailable sources of magnesium: magnesium (malate) and magnesium (taurinate). In addition to being well-absorbed sources of magnesium – Mg-malate and Mg-taurinate provide the two beneficial bioactive molecules: malic acid, an organic acid that removes Al from the body, and taurine, a calming, neuroprotective, antioxidant amino acid.
Each 2 chew serving provides 100 mg of organic magnesium, a healthy dose of malic acid, and nearly 800 mg of taurine along with a broad-spectrum of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients.
For those wanting to increase their dietary consumption of magnesium, the best natural sources of magnesium include nuts, seeds, fruits, vegetables, dairy products, seafood, and whole grains.
We view this as a sacred mission to serve the world with products that strengthen and provide nutritional support at the deepest level. Based in irrefutable science and grounded in nature — our products embody the values of our company — with unsurpassed quality, safety and effectiveness. Designed to provide our customers with profound nourishment while promoting a greater sense of vitality and well-being.
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- Schwalfenberg GK, Genuis SJ. The Importance of Magnesium in Clinical Healthcare. Scientifica (Cairo). 2017;2017:4179326.
- Kirkland AE, Sarlo GL, Holton KF. The Role of Magnesium in Neurological Disorders. Nutrients. 2018 Jun 6;10(6). pii: E730.
- Mousain-Bosc M, Roche M, Rapin J, Bali JP. Magnesium VitB6 intake reduces central nervous system hyperexcitability in children. J Am Coll Nutr. 2004 Oct;23(5):545S-548S.
- Mousain-Bosc M., Roche M., Polge A., Pradal-Prat D., Rapin J., Bali J.P. Improvement of neurobehavioral disorders in children supplemented with magnesium-vitamin B6. I. Attention deficit hyperactivity disorders. Magnes. Res. 2006;19:46–52.
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- Eby GA, Eby KL. Rapid recovery from major depression using magnesium treatment. Med Hypotheses. 2006;67(2):362-70.
- Toffa DH, Magnerou MA, Kassab A, Djibo FH, Sow AD. Can magnesium reduce central neurodegeneration in Alzheimer’s disease? Basic evidences and research needs. Neurochem Int. 2019 Mar 21. pii: S0197-0186(18)30676-4.
- James J DiNicolantonio, James H O’Keefe, and William Wilson. Subclinical magnesium deficiency: a principal driver of cardiovascular disease and a public health crisis. Open Heart. 2018; 5(1): e000668.
- David W. Killilea, Jeanette A.M. Maier. A connection between magnesium deficiency and aging: new insights from cellular studies. Magnes Res. 2008 Jun; 21(2): 77–82.
- Dou M, et al. Combined chromium and magnesium decreases insulin resistance more effectively than either alone. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2016 Dec;25(4):747-753.
- Dingwall KM, Delima JF, Gent D, Batey RG. Hypomagnesaemia and its potential impact on thiamine utilisation in patients with alcohol misuse at the Alice Springs Hospital. Drug Alcohol Rev. 2015 May;34(3):323-8.
- Dyckner T, Ek B, Nyhlin H, Wester PO. Aggravation of thiamine deficiency by magnesium depletion. A case report. Acta Med Scand. 1985;218(1):129-31.
- Peake RW, Godber IM, Maguire D. The effect of magnesium administration on erythrocyte transketolase activity in alcoholic patients treated with thiamine. Scott Med J. 2013 Aug;58(3):139-42.
- Planells E, Lerma A, Sánchez-Morito N, Aranda P, LLopis J. Effect of magnesium deficiency on vitamin B2 and B6 status in the rat. J Am Coll Nutr. 1997 Aug;16(4):352-6.
- Abraham GE, Schwartz UD, Lubran MM. Effect of vitamin B-6 on plasma and red blood cell magnesium levels in premenopausal women. Ann Clin Lab Sci. 1981 Jul-Aug;11(4):333-6.