magnesium benefits,best magnesium complex supplement,magnesium supplement

The Power of Magnesium: How This Mineral Can Transform Your Health

The Power of Magnesium: How This Mineral Can Transform Your Health


Magnesium is an essential mineral that is involved in numerous reactions in the body, such as energy production, nerve function, muscle relaxation, and bone and tooth formation, protein synthesis and many more. Magnesium (Mg) enhances over 354 enzyme related processes in the body and is known to be critical for optimum functioning and may even help prevent or combat chronic diseases.

Even though Mg is one of the most important nutrients, it has been overlooked by botanists, agriculturalists, nutritionists, and clinicians. It is now emerging that Mg deficiency is an alarming problem for plant, animal, and human health.
(Published online 2020 Nov 3. doi: 10.1016/ j.heliyon.2020.e05390)

Our intake of magnesium has declined by about 60% in the last 50 years or so. There are a variety of reasons for this. One is that the levels in soils are much lower globally and that includes South Africa.

In many cases the correct type of supplementation is vital to ensure that levels are adequate. The toxic effects of an excessive intake are seldom reported. Please note that intake must be limited if kidney disease and or kidney failure is present. In this guide, we will discuss the benefits of magnesium, its sources, and common deficiencies.

Magnesium Consumption Through Time

The Impact of Soils and Farming Techniques

In Palaeolithic (roughly 2.5 million to 10 000 years BC) society’s daily Mg intake was about 600 mg, which is significantly higher than todays.
(Published online 2020 Nov3. doi: 10.1016/ j.heliyon.2020.e05390).

Things have changed considerably, and the reasons why our Mg intake has decreased so much has a lot to do with our soils and farming techniques. Soil concentrations of magnesium have decreased hugely over the last 60 years. Here are some of the reasons that have contributed to this situation:

1. Herbicides and Pesticides
This is a major contributing factor. These chemicals kill off worms and bacteria in the soil, which are crucial for making minerals available to plants. Without these microorganisms, plants are unable to absorb magnesium and other essential nutrients, leading to a deficiency in the food we consume.

2. Potash Use in Fertilizers
Potash, which is a commonly used fertilizer, also contributes to the depletion of magnesium in the soil. Plants take up potash in preference to calcium and magnesium, which means that these minerals are less available for uptake by plants.

3. Soil Erosion and Acid Rain
Heavy rains resulting in soil erosion allows magnesium to leach out of the soil. In addition, acid rain caused by air pollution contains nitric acid. To neutralize this it reacts with calcium and magnesium. Over time, this leads to a depletion of both calcium and magnesium in the soil, and aluminium builds up to replace them in the plant. This can cause plants to grow taller and faster, but they will be weak and lacking in Mg.

Our Modern Day Lifestyles

Our modern lifestyle is another contributing factor for lower Mg levels with these elements playing an important role:

1. Food processing
Magnesium is lost during the processing of grains and vegetables. Milling of grains to make white flour results in the loss of magnesium. Boiling vegetables also leads to the loss of magnesium.

2. Fluoride
Fluoride in water and toothpaste binds to magnesium, making it unavailable to the body. Fluoride is insoluble and can replaces magnesium in bone and cartilage. Prolonged ingestion of fluoride adversely affects, teeth, bones, and other organs.

3. Stress
A variety of metabolic processes require increased magnesium to function effectively during stressful situations. Moreover, ongoing stress can result in decreased stomach acid (hydrochloric acid) leading to reduced magnesium absorption. Commonly consumed antacids also neutralise hydrochloric acid, decreasing magnesium absorption even further.

4. Unhealthy Intestine
Low concentrations of healthy bacteria, sometimes caused by conditions like IBS, leaky gut, food intolerances and allergies (e.g., gluten and dairy), funguses, parasites and vitamin D deficiency, can alter magnesium absorption.

5. Body Size
The larger the body, the larger the magnesium pool, and the lower the absorption from any source.

6. Hypokalaemia
Low potassium levels can increase urinary magnesium loss.

The Absorption of Magnesium

0.05% of our body weight is Mg (20-28gm). The body typically absorbs only 20-50% of ingested Mg, so understanding the factors that can improve or prevent magnesium absorption is an important first step to addressing deficiencies and increasing magnesium intake.

Currently, an estimated 75% of Americans have daily magnesium intakes less than the RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance), with similar figures estimated for most industrialized nations. SA has often followed the USA. These radical figures point not only to the need for improved diets, but also to the need for a deeper understanding of the pathways that bring magnesium into and out of the body.

Whether via foods and or traditional supplements, Mg passes through the digestive system or “gastrointestinal tract”. The gastrointestinal (GI) tract is essentially the path anything we swallow takes:

  • The mouth
  • The oesophagus or throat
  • The stomach
  • The small intestine
  • The large intestine

Chewing food well is the first steps in magnesium available for absorption by the body. Then the gastric acids found in the stomach continue the digesting process. It then passes through to the small intestine where most of the magnesium is absorbed. The lining of the small intestine is covered in hair like structures called “villi”. Inside the villi are tiny blood vessels called capillaries that the Mg passes into. That is how it gets into the blood stream and then can be transported to the various areas of the body where it is used in the numerous processes essential for optimal life.

Magnesium not absorbed in the small intestine continues to travel to the large intestine, where a small additional amount may be absorbed.

Typical magnesium absorption involves:

  • 40% of magnesium intake absorbed in the small intestine
  • 5% absorbed in the large intestine
  • 55% leaving the body as waste

Depending on the type of magnesium taken in and the magnesium levels of the individual, these figures can be higher or lower. Studies have shown that some people’s metabolism only absorbs 20% of all Mg eaten.

Certain forms of magnesium supplements, have very poor absorption in the regions of 4%. These include magnesium oxide and citrate.

Foods that may help promote best-absorbed magnesium include:

  • Fructose and complex carbohydrates, like whole grains, barley, quinoa, potatoes, oatmeal and beans.
  • Protein, except for unfermented soy products.
  • Medium chain triglycerides, or MCTs, such as coconut oil and palm oil
  • Fermentable or soluble fibres, such as fibre from fruits and vegetables.

All these foods may enhance magnesium absorption to a degree in the healthy large intestine where less is generally absorbed.

It can be said that if seeking a balanced, high magnesium diet, just taking in magnesium-rich vegetables and whole grains may not be enough to ensure good magnesium levels.

Supplementation with a good Mg supplement must be considered.

Foods that Block Absorption:

Certain foods can block the absorption of magnesium.

  • High protein diets, tannins in tea, oxalic acid in rhubarb, spinach, and chard, and phytic acid in cereals and soy can all decrease magnesium absorption.
  • Large consumption of caffeine, carbonated drinks like Cola, cigarettes and alcohol can also cause depletion due to their diuretic effect.
  • Certain medication taken over long periods of time like antacids, antibiotics, diuretics, proton pump inhibitors, corticosteroids, insulin, may all affect Mg absorption.

The Role of Magnesium in Various Metabolic Processes

Magnesium is a critical mineral that plays an essential role in many physiological processes in the body. By ensuring adequate magnesium intake, we can help to support normal functioning of the nervous system, muscles, bones, and many other essential systems in the body.  Here are some of the most important benefits:

Enhancing Enzyme-Related Processes

Magnesium is involved in over 300 enzyme-related processes in the body. This includes energy production on a cellular level, which is essential for proper cellular function. It is present in every cell. 

ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate) is the major unit of energy produced in the body, but ATP is actually Magnesium–ATP. All enzymes that create or use ATP require Magnesium ions. Deficiency of Magnesium means that energy cannot be produced and tiredness and fatigue result. Magnesium supplementation contributes to a reduction in tiredness and fatigue and normal energy yielding metabolism.

Magnesium is also involved in the use of insulin, which helps regulate blood sugar levels. Without enough magnesium, the body may struggle to produce energy and regulate blood sugar levels effectively.

Magnesium is a common deficiency in type 1 & 2 and gestational diabetes. It is intricately involved in the stabilization of blood sugar levels. Often there is not enough Magnesium to manage getting glucose into the cells efficiently. One cause for the depletion may be an increased urinary loss of magnesium caused by an increased urinary excretion of glucose that accompanies poorly controlled diabetes. Magnesium depletion has been shown, in a few studies, to increase insulin resistance and may adversely affect blood glucose control in diabetes mellitus.

Magnesium contributes to normal functioning of the nervous system for neurotransmission.

Magnesium is important for the normal functioning of the nervous system. It is involved in the transmission of nerve impulses, and it helps to regulate the activity of certain neurotransmitters.

Low levels of Mg result in hyper excitability of the nerves and random firing. This can alter sleep patterns making it difficult to get to sleep.

Researchers Starobrat-Hermelin & Kozielec (2004) have shown that children with ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) showed improvement in lowering hyperactivity when supplementing with Magnesium. Further research (Huss, Völp and Stauss-Grabo, 2010) found these benefits were even more enhanced when supplementing with Omega 3 fatty acids.

Low magnesium levels have been linked to an increased risk of developing neurological disorders such as migraines, epilepsy, and Alzheimer’s disease.

Magnesium contributes to normal muscle function and muscle contraction, including heart muscle.

35% of the body’s total Magnesium stores are stored in muscle. Magnesium is vital for muscle function and contraction, including the heart muscle. Magnesium helps to regulate the flow of calcium in and out of muscle cells, which is essential for muscle contraction.

Magnesium deficiency has been linked to muscle cramps and spasms, and in severe cases, can even lead to heart arrhythmias. Decreased levels of Magnesium in the blood have been related to heart arrhythmias and hypertension (Fox et al. 2001).

Studies at the University of Texas have shown that deficiency of Magnesium results in cramping and severe muscular pain such as occurs in Fibromyalgia. When Magnesium malate was administered to patients with fibromyalgia, it was clinically demonstrated to improve pain and tenderness. (Russell et al 1995).

Magnesium and Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS)

According to a recent literature review, magnesium is an evidence-based treatment for PMS (Parazzini F et al. Magnesium in the gynecological practice: a literature review. Magnes Res. 2017 Feb 1;30(1):1-7.).

Some researchers have suggested that it may work by calming the nervous system and by “normalizing the actions of different hormones (mainly progesterone) on the central nervous system” (Quaranta S et al. Pilot study of the efficacy and safety of a modified-release magnesium 250 mg tablet (Sincromag) for the treatment of premenstrual syndrome. Clin Drug Investig. 2007;27(1):51-8).

Tip: Magnesium works best in combination with vitamin B6 (7) and it can be used to prevent premenstrual migraines . (Parazzini F et al. Magnesium in the gynecological practice: a literature review. Magnes Res. 2017 Feb 1;30(1):1-7.).

In some people, Magnesium may help to prevent period pain if taken daily. (Parazzini F et al. Magnesium in the gynecological practice: a literature review. Magnes Res. 2017 Feb 1;30(1):1-7.). It works by relaxing the smooth muscle of the uterus and by reducing the prostaglandins that cause period pain (Seifert B et al. Magnesium–a new therapeutic alternative in primary dysmenorrhea. Zentralbl Gynakol. 1989;111(11):755-60. Parazzini F et al. Magnesium in the gynecological practice: a literature review. Magnes Res. 2017 Feb 1;30(1):1-7.)

Magnesium can relieve symptoms of perimenopause and menopause. Magnesium can ease symptoms of the menopause transition (Parazzini F et al. Magnesium in the gynecological practice: a literature review. Magnes Res. 2017 Feb 1;30(1):1-7.)

For example, in one study, magnesium reduced the menopausal hot flashes of women who were undergoing breast cancer treatment and could not take hormone replacement (Haeseong P et al. A pilot phase II trial of magnesium supplements to reduce menopausal hot flashes in breast cancer patients. Support Care Cancer. 2011 Jun; 19(6): 859–863.)

Magnesium contributes to normal protein synthesis.

Magnesium is necessary for the synthesis of over 350 enzymes that are made of proteins. These enzymes are involved in many important metabolic processes in the body, including energy production, DNA, RNA, and protein synthesis, and the production of glutathione (Swaminathan 2003), an antioxidant that helps to protect cells from damage.

Magnesium contributes to normal psychological function.

Low magnesium levels have been associated with an increased risk of depression and anxiety. There is a lot of research evaluating the role Magnesium plays in neurological conditions. It has a major role in relaying signals between your brain and your body.

Depression has been demonstrated in people with low red blood cell Magnesium levels (A blood test that indicates the level of Mg in red blood cells) . (Nechifor. 2009).

Also, if Magnesium is removed from the diet, anxiety and depressive like symptoms result. (Spasov, et al. 2008). And there is a definite correlation between increased rates of depression and reduction in the diet of Magnesium. (Eby GB, Eby KL. 2010).

It can therefore be concluded that Magnesium is needed for the normal functioning of the brain and nervous system, and it helps to regulate mood and emotional responses. Supplementing with magnesium has been shown to improve symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Magnesium contributes to the maintenance of normal bones and teeth.

Magnesium plays a vital role in maintaining healthy bones and teeth. 60% of the body’s Magnesium is found in bones and teeth and the rest in muscle cells and body fluids. Around 50% of the body’s magnesium is stored in the bones.

Magnesium is necessary for the absorption, transport, and metabolism of calcium, which is essential for healthy bones. It also helps to regulate parathyroid hormone, which regulates bone breakdown, and activates the enzyme required for the production of new bone.

Magnesium has a role in cell division.

Magnesium is essential for cell division, and low magnesium levels have been linked to decreased cell proliferation and increased oxidative stress.

Magnesium is required for DNA replication, transcription into RNA and translation into protein. These are all processes that occur when cells divide and multiply bringing about growth and healing in the body. Without the right amount of Mg, these processes are compromised.

Many studies have shown that magnesium can promote axons (the part of the nerve cell that transmits ‘information’ to the next nerve cell) growth and neural stem cells reproduction (Vennemeyer et al., 2014; Sun et al., 2016).

Magnesium contributes to electrolyte balance.

Electrolytes are minerals in the body that have an electrical charge. Calcium, Magnesium, Sodium, Potassium, Chlorine and phosphate are all electrolytes. Levels of electrolytes can become too low due to sweating, vomiting, diarrhoea or even over hydration. Electrolytes are essential for regulating fluid balance in the body. The balance of the electrolytes is critical for the normal function of cells and organs.

Deficiency of Magnesium can impair the sodium potassium pump, and calcium-blocking activity is impaired by insufficient Magnesium leading to membrane destabilisation and hyperexcitability. (E L Tso and R A Barish. 1992).

Magnesium is required for the active transport of ions like potassium and calcium across cell membranes. Through its role in ion transport systems, magnesium affects the conduction of nerve impulses, muscle contraction, and normal heart rhythm. (Linus Pauling)


Magnesium absorption is altered by an unhealthy intestine, stress, and some foods that can block the absorption of magnesium. Some drugs eliminate magnesium, and body size affects magnesium absorption from any source.

Signs of Low Magnesium Levels

Inadequate magnesium levels can lead to various health risks, including:

  • Muscle Cramps: Low magnesium levels can lead to muscle cramps, especially in athletes.
  • Anxiety and Depression: Deficiency of magnesium has been linked to depression and anxiety.
  • Osteoporosis: Low magnesium levels can increase the risk of osteoporosis.
  • Hypertension: Low magnesium levels can cause hypertension.
  • Diabetes: Magnesium deficiency can lead to insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes.
  • Migraines: Magnesium supplementation can reduce the frequency and intensity of migraines.
  • Asthma: Low magnesium levels can lead to asthma attacks.

Sources of Magnesium

Magnesium is present in every cell of the body. It is found in various foods, such as green leafy vegetables, nuts, seeds, whole grains, and fish. Water sources can also contain magnesium.

  • Nuts and Seeds: Almonds, cashews, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds are all rich sources of magnesium.
  • Legumes: Black beans, kidney beans, and chickpeas contain magnesium.
  • Leafy Greens: Magnesium is part of chlorophyll, the green pigment in plants so green leafy vegetables are good sources of magnesium; spinach, kale, and Swiss chard are high in magnesium.
  • Whole Grains: Brown rice, quinoa, and oat bran are good sources of magnesium.
  • Fatty Fish: Salmon, mackerel, and halibut are good sources of magnesium.
  • Dark Chocolate: Dark chocolate contains magnesium, but should be consumed in moderation due to its high sugar content.
  • Supplements: Magnesium supplements are available in various forms, including magnesium citrate, magnesium chloride, and magnesium glycinate.

Not all Magnesium supplements are created equal

Bioavailability refers to the amount of elemental magnesium that is actually absorbed by the body and is available for use.

Different magnesium supplements have different levels of bioavailability, which can affect their effectiveness. For example:

  • Magnesium oxide has the highest amount of elemental magnesium at 60%, but it is poorly absorbed by the gut, meaning that only about 4% of its elemental magnesium is absorbed, equivalent to about 12 mg out of a 500 mg tablet. Magnesium oxide is commonly used in poor quality supplements simply because it is cheap, though it can be used to facilitate with constipation.
  • On the other hand, some magnesium supplements are well absorbed by the body and can be easily utilised. Magnesium malate, magnesium citrate, and magnesium aspartate are examples of these supplements. These supplements have higher levels of bioavailability compared to magnesium oxide, making them more effective.
  • Magnesium chloride is also well utilised by the body, but it can affect stomach acid. Therefore, it needs to be coated and used with care.
  • It is important to choose a high-quality magnesium supplement with good bioavailability. The type of magnesium supplement you choose can affect how much of it your tissues can readily use.
  • Sally T.’s Magnesium Complex has been designed to optimise bioavailability and includes magnesium malate, magnesium citrate, and magnesium aspartate, making it one of the best magnesium complex supplements available.

Understanding the bioavailability of different magnesium supplements can help you make an informed decision when choosing a supplement. Magnesium complex supplements with higher levels of bioavailability, such as magnesium malate, magnesium citrate, and magnesium aspartate, are more effective than those with lower levels, such as magnesium oxide.
Choose a high-quality supplement and consult with a nutritionist or healthcare professional for advice on the best magnesium complex supplements if you have any questions or concerns.

Sally T. Magnesium Complex - Cramps, Exhaustion, Insomnia, Low Energy and More!

Restore your Magnesium levels and unlock your full potential with Sally T. Magnesium Complex today!

Effective supplement, like it a lot and I like this brand too!
Effective supplement, like it a lot and I like this brand too!
Read More
Sally T. Magnesium Complex
I suffer with bad leg cramps and low Magnesium- these tablets really help at night.
I suffer with bad leg cramps and low Magnesium- these tablets really help at night.
Read More
Sally T. Magnesium Complex
Love Sally Ts products. good price, south african product. all minerals and vits in bioavailable form, which means better absorption.
Love Sally Ts products. good price, south african product. all minerals and vits in bioavailable form, which means better absorption.
Read More
Sally T. Magnesium Complex
Well priced, using it for the first time.
Well priced, using it for the first time.
Read More
Sally T. Magnesium Complex
Very happy with the product
Very happy with the product
Read More
Sally T. Magnesium Complex

In Conclusion

Magnesium is critical for optimum function of a wide variety of metabolic processes in our bodies. To ensure adequate levels, one can incorporate magnesium-rich foods into their diet, take supplements, or use magnesium oil or Epsom salt baths. It is essential to recognize and address magnesium deficiencies to promote overall health and well-being.


Binding Sites on Human Proteins. BMC Bioinformatics. 13(14):S10 Hardwick, L.L, Jones, M.R, Brautbar, N, Lee, D.B 1991. Magnesium Absorption: Mechanisms And The Influence of Vitamin D, Calcium and Phosphate. The Journal of Nutrition. 121(1), p.14.

Starobrat-Hermelin, B., Kozielec T., 1997. The effects of Magnesium physiological supplementation on hyperactivity in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Positive response to Magnesium oral loading test. Magnesium Research. 10(2). pp.149-56.

Huss, M., Völp, A., Stauss-Grabo, M., 2010. Supplementation of Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids, Magnesium and Zinc in Children Seeking Medical Advice for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Problems – An Observational Cohort Study. Lipids in Health and Disease. 9(105).

Stephenson, E.W., Podolsky, R.J., 1977. Regulation by Magnesium of Intracellular Calcium Movement in Skinned Muscle Fibers. Journal of General Physiology. 69(1). pp.1-16.

Fox, C., Ramsoomair, D., Carter, C. 2001. Magnesium: its proven and potential clinical significance. Southern Medical Journal.94(12).

Swaminathan, R. 2009. Magnesium Metabolism and its Disorders. The Clinical Biochemist Reviews.24(2).

Nechifor M. 2009. Magnesium in major depression. Magnesium research: official organ of the International Society for the Development of Research on Magnesium.22(3).

Spasov AA, Iezhitsa IN, Kharitonova MV, Kravchenko MS. 2008. Depression-like and anxiety-related behaviour of rats fed with Magnesium-deficient diets. Zh Vyssh Nerv Deiat Im I P Pavlova.58(4):476-85
Eby GA 3rd, Eby KL. 2010. Magnesium for treatment-resistant depression: a review and hypothesis. Medical Hypotheses. 74(4):649-60.

Stendig-Lindberg G, Tepper R, Leichter I. 1993. Trabecular bone density in a two year controlled trial of peroral Magnesium in osteoporosis. Magnesium research: official organ of the International Society for the Development of Research on Magnesium. 6(2):155-63.

Wolf FI, Trapani V, Simonacci M, Boninsegna A, Mazur A, Maier JA. 2009. Magnesium deficiency affects mammary epithelial cell proliferation: involvement of oxidative stress. Nutrition and Cancer. 61(1):131-6.

Federica I Wolf, Valentina Trapani, Achille Cittadini. 2008. Magnesium and the control of cell proliferation: looking for a needle in a haystack. Magnesium Research. 21(2):83-91.

Guerrero-Romero F, Rodríguez-Morán M. 2011. Magnesium improves the beta-cell function to compensate variation of insulin sensitivity: double-blind, randomized clinical trial. European journal of clinical investigation. 41(4):405-10.

E L Tso and R A Barish. 1992. Magnesium: clinical considerations. The Journal of Emergency Medicine. 10(6):735.