Liposomal magnesium differs from traditional magnesium supplements primarily in that its active ingredient, magnesium, is encapsulated in a liposome (a small bubble made from fat cells) to boost absorption. Encasing the active ingredients inside the liposome protects the vitamins or minerals from the stomach’s harsh environment and enhances magnesium absorption in the body.
Improving magnesium absorption is crucial because magnesium is involved in almost all the basic biochemical and metabolic processes in the body and plays a vital role in maintaining good human health. Magnesium contributes to skeletal health and mental health, helps prevent migraines and headaches, regulates blood sugar and blood pressure, protects heart health and more.
Unfortunately, magnesium deficiency is too common today. Signs of a magnesium deficiency may include muscle spasms and cramps, loss of appetite, drowsiness, nausea, and fatigue. If you have any of these signs, keep reading to learn more about the potential benefits of supplementing with liposomal magnesium.
In this article, we’ll discuss the importance of magnesium as a mineral in your body, the signs of magnesium deficiency, recommended doses, and magnesium-rich foods. We also answer the questions: which type of magnesium is the best, when does my body need magnesium the most, and why is magnesium deficiency so hard to diagnose?
Finally, since the widespread magnesium deficiency in populations is serious, and there is understandably some interest in supplementing with magnesium, we’ll go into a little more detail about what you need to know about liposomal magnesium and other liposomal supplements. You’ll discover why liposomal magnesium offers several benefits in addition to better absorption in the body.
Understanding the basics:
What is a liposome?
The word ‘liposome’ comes from the Greek words ‘lipos’, meaning fat, and ‘soma’, meaning body. This gives the first clue to the meaning of liposome – it is something that is mainly made of fat, or lipids and is spherical in shape, exactly like your own cell membranes in your body.
So, in short, liposomes are small spherically shaped artificial vesicles that can be created from cholesterol and natural non-toxic phospholipids.
For the sake of clarity, let us explain some of the meanings regarding liposomes:
- What does spherical mean? Something spherical is three-dimensionally round or more or less round. For example, oranges, tangerines, apples, and the earth are spherical, although none of them is ever perfectly round.
- What is a vesicle? A vesicle is a small spherical sac of phospholipid molecules that surrounds the liquid (water), especially when it has been artificially formed to carry drugs or other substances into tissues. Vesicles also form naturally during the processes of uptake, secretion, and the transportation of substances within the plasma membrane.
- What is phospholipid? Phospholipids are a class of lipids, and lipids are fatty compounds that perform a variety of functions in the body. They are part of the cell membranes and help control what goes into, stays in, and gets out of your cells. Phospholipids help store energy, absorb vitamins, and produce hormones.
Liposomes have at least one lipid bilayer and are mainly made up of phospholipids, especially phosphatidylcholine (also known as vitamin B4). B4 has free radical neutralizing activity and it plays an important role in the metabolism of the membrane and nucleus of human cells. Phospholipids form the phospholipid bilayer of the membrane and are major components of the cell membrane (2).
Since the lipid bilayer of the liposome is very similar in composition and structure to the membrane that surrounds all our cells in the body, we can say that when it comes to structure – liposomes are like our own body cells
It is probably precisely because liposomes mimic our body cells that they act as such useful and efficient helpers in aiding many different nutrients to reach your body (1). Ecosh Liposomal Magnesium is available on Amazon.
The science behind supplements:
How and why liposomes are used in the production of dietary supplements.
Humans are programmed to trust the old and the familiar. While the word ‘liposomal magnesium’ may sound unclear and something you might not dare to experiment with just yet, you should know that the technology of liposomal supplements, including liposomal magnesium, is actually based on a totally natural phenomenon.
In addition, in fact, liposomal technology is certainly no longer new. It’s just that since their name first emerged in 1964, liposomes have been mainly used for the efficient transport of drugs into the cell.
And, as liposomal encapsulation has had a major impact in many biomedical fields due to its many advantages in terms of drug delivery (overcoming barriers to uptake by cells and tissues, stabilizing therapeutic agents, and improving the biodistribution of compounds), the potential of this technology has been continuously developed and increasingly used as well as evaluated in the field of dietary supplements in recent years (7).
The logic behind the process of producing liposomal medicines and now also dietary supplements like liposomal magnesium is next:
- Under certain conditions, phospholipids can trap liquids in lipid bubbles. This is the way mother nature has created it. What is contained in these liquids (which can be vitamins, minerals, or other trace elements) is irrelevant to the liposome. This ability of lipids to encapsulate or trap active substances is called encapsulation. Thus, active substances in aqueous solutions are automatically encapsulated by the liposomes at the formation stage. A dietary supplement is therefore ‘liposomal’ if the active substance (in this case magnesium) is encapsulated in liposomes.
- The technology, implemented by BART’s R&D department, has produced liposomes consisting of a single bilayer of lecithin molecules (phosphatidylcholine, which is a chemical also contained in soybeans, mustard, eggs, sunflower, and other foods). These form an external wall around the aqueous part of the liposome, thus framing the magnesium (magnesium citrate) molecules in the aqueous phase. In simple terms, nutrients such as magnesium are wrapped, like cell membranes, in a layer of phospholipid membrane.
- Microscopic observations have confirmed that the structure of liposomes is not affected by the spray drying that is an integral part of this technology.
- After consuming liposomal supplements, a synthesis process then takes place, which helps to deliver active ingredients (such as vitamins, minerals, or other trace elements) more successfully into cells. The aim of any active substance is, in fact, to be transported first to the mucous membrane, then through the epithelial cells lining the intestine into the bloodstream, and from the bloodstream – into the cell.
As the liposome is structurally similar to the cell membrane, its delivery to the cell is much more efficient than the transport of other non-liposomal substances. This ensures almost complete delivery of the active substance and also allows a significant increase in bioavailability.
Thus, liposomal encapsulation technology has unique properties that help to improve the absorption and efficacy of dietary supplements and thereby maximize the effect of active substances such as magnesium. Ecosh Liposomal Magnesium is available on Amazon.
Advantages of liposomal magnesium over traditional forms.
Liposomal magnesium differs from traditional magnesium supplements mainly because its active ingredient – magnesium is encapsulated in a liposome (a small pocket of fat cells) to preserve it and enhance its absorption. This method of encapsulating the active ingredients inside the liposome helps to preserve the vitamins or minerals from the harsh environment of the stomach. Also, it improves the absorption of magnesium in your body.
Enhancing magnesium absorption and preserving it from early decomposition are the primary reasons why liposomal supplements have recently become increasingly preferred to traditional ones. However, these are not the only benefits of liposomal magnesium and other liposomal supplements.
Liposomes are organic substances made from phospholipids, which are also the building blocks of the human body’s cells. This is why they act as efficient delivery mechanisms for transporting nutrients to important organs and tissues and have become important in the industry of dietary supplements.
Here are the 10 main advantages of liposomal magnesium. These benefits also extend to other liposomal vitamins and supplements (7).
Top reasons to choose liposomal magnesium:
the 10 main advantages
1. Liposomal medicines and supplements (including liposomal magnesium) are better absorbed by the body and ensure maximum absorption of nutrients into the bloodstream
Dietary supplements predominantly have a low bioavailability or absorption rate. Essentially, this simply means that to absorb nutrients, your body has to work harder to process the capsules and tablets.
However, liposomal supplements, including liposomal magnesium, can have an absorption rate (the time it takes for the active ingredient to enter your bloodstream) that is several times higher than the absorption rate of traditional supplements or medicine. This means that compared to traditional forms of magnesium supplements – liposomal magnesium has a better absorption rate and is more easily processed by your cells.
The higher the absorption rate and the higher the bioavailability of an active substance, the more effective it is and the more it contributes to your health. Thus, because your body gets more magnesium out of a supplement in this form, there may be more real benefits if you consume a liposomal magnesium supplement (3, 7, 10).
The more efficient absorption characteristic of liposomal supplements is important for all supplement consumers, but particularly for those suffering from a chronic disease, impaired cellular metabolism, or an increased need for a nutrient or drug with an urgent effect. This is precisely because liposomes can increase the bioavailability of nutrients, including magnesium.
2. Liposomes transport nutrients directly to the cells where they are most needed and achieve a more sustained release of nutrients
Because liposomes are made up of phospholipids, like your own cell membranes, they are absorbed from the intestinal wall of your cells. This is how the active substances, such as magnesium, enter directly into the intestinal cells (enterocytes) and from there through the lymphatic system into the blood. Which also helps to bypass the primary metabolism.
Put simply, the liposome acts like a shuttle bus, skipping some unnecessary stops to get straight to your destination. The ability of an active substance, such as magnesium, to reach its destination directly is particularly important for those who have some health condition that has weakened and impaired their liver and/or who are in urgent need of additional nutrients or other essential substances (4).
3. Liposomes protect the nutrients in supplements from digestive enzymes, oxidation, pH, temperature, and degradation, as well as nutrient utilization by the gut microbiome
When supplements, together with the nutrients they contain move through your digestive system, they are broken down. This means that when you take traditional supplements, your digestive enzymes, digestive juices, and intestinal bacteria interact with the supplement, and often cause the active substances in the supplement to be less effective.
The liposome, on the other hand, protects the nutrients in the supplement from the harsh environment of your stomach and the degrading effects of digestive juices and enzymes.
The molecule of the active ingredient is transported directly to the intestine and from there into the bloodstream, thus allowing it to survive and function as desired (5, 7).
Liposomal technology helps to stabilize the encapsulated active substances and protects them from a variety of external factors as well as enzymatic transformations (5).
Thus, liposomes provide a strong protective function for active substances such as vitamins and minerals. Thanks to the cell membrane-like structure of liposomes, the active substance is more easily absorbed and the nutrients are released directly into the cell.
4. Liposomal magnesium is so much more effective that you can take smaller doses
You need smaller doses of liposomal magnesium and other liposomal supplements for a very simple reason – as mentioned earlier, they are more easily absorbed by your body and therefore provide more benefit. This saves you money since you don’t have to purchase as large a quantity!
5. Powdered liposomal magnesium is additive-free as liposomal technology allows manufacturers to simplify the formulation of the supplement and there is no need to add preservatives, alcohol, and other harmful substances
Many dietary supplements are known to contain a wide variety of additives such as glazing agents, bulking agents, preservatives, anti-caking agents, gelatin, etc. However, liposomal supplements do not require these additives, as liposomal encapsulation technology uses only organic materials (7).
Thus, powdered liposomal magnesium is completely GMO-free, and, of course, does not contain any preservatives. The consumption of liposomal supplements therefore also helps to reduce certain side effects that may occur when you take traditional supplements (7).
Similarly, the powdered form increases the stability of magnesium when stored. This means that liposomal magnesium does not necessarily need to be stored at low temperatures, so it’s easier for you to store safely.
6. Liposomal magnesium is gentle on your stomach
Some types of magnesium (you can read about different types of magnesium in the section “”) can be harsh and irritate your stomach. However, the liposomal form of supplements helps to protect your sensitive stomach lining from irritation caused by conventional forms of magnesium citrate supplements.
7. There is no risk of over-consuming magnesium
Liposomal magnesium is highly soluble in water. Therefore, there is no risk of overdosing as your body excretes excess magnesium in the urine. Of course, this does not mean that you can now safely start consuming more magnesium in this form. Always follow the dosage instructions on the label and consult your doctor before taking any supplements.
8. Liposomal magnesium is non-toxic
Liposomal magnesium is biocompatible and also biodegradable. In other words, because liposomal technology allows systemic toxicity to be minimized through efficient delivery, liposomal magnesium is neither toxic nor harmful to living tissues.
9. Liposomal magnesium is also safe in case of hypersensitivity
Thanks to its technological process and final formulation, liposomal magnesium is also safe for people who are intolerant to some foods or suffer from several other health conditions.
10. Liposomes can also offer additional health benefits
In addition to liposomal magnesium, liposomal encapsulation technology is also used in the production of many pharmaceuticals and other supplements, such as liposomal vitamin C, liposomal vitamin D, liposomal vitamin D for vegans as well as many other food supplements, but liposomes also have nutritional value themselves!
In fact, liposomes play a crucial role in replacing damaged phospholipids in your body. This, in turn, is essential for maintaining the membrane that protects cells.
So, in addition to the nutritional benefits of liposomal supplements, such as magnesium, liposomes can also help maintain the health of your cells.
Liposomes play a crucial role in replacing damaged phospholipids in the body, which are essential for maintaining the protective membrane of cells (7).
Magnesium – the essential mineral:
understanding its role and importance in the human body.
While it is known that magnesium has an extremely important function in the human body, remember that the facts and research results below are indicative but do not yet extend to a general truth accepted by all. It also does not mean that magnesium intake will necessarily help every condition described.
In the information presented below, we want to share our knowledge and highlight a selection of what we think are the most exciting research findings. The source of this research is noted by numbers and listed at the end of this article. Please remember that research is ongoing.
So while this information represents our best understanding today, new discoveries may further our knowledge and understanding. In addition, it’s always important to know that the results of scientific research are valid for magnesium as a mineral, not for a specific manufacturer’s supplement.
So, before taking magnesium supplements for therapeutic purposes, always check with your doctor first and make sure you listen to your inner voice! Now let’s look at the importance of magnesium as a mineral in your body.
What is affected by magnesium in the human body:
- Almost all metabolic processes. In terms of quantity, magnesium is the fourth most important element in the human body and the second most important positive charge ion (intracellular cation) after potassium (13,14). This means that magnesium is involved in almost all the basic biochemical and metabolic processes in the body and plays a vital role in maintaining good human health.
- The skeleton. Magnesium is also referred to as an essential nutrient for skeletal health (16). In particular, systematic reviews have shown that increased magnesium intake may contribute to increased bone mineral density in the femur and hip in older adults, who are at increased risk of bone loss with age (17).
- Mental health. Studies have also shown magnesium’s supportive effects on mental health in various types of depression, and its beneficial interaction with antidepressants (18).
- Migraines and headaches. Similarly, magnesium may also help in cases of migraines and headaches, helping to reduce their severity and frequency (19).
- Blood sugar. Eliminating magnesium deficiency in the pre-diabetic state may improve insulin sensitivity and help inhibit the development of type 2 diabetes (19, 20, 21, 22). In addition, magnesium intake may help improve fasting blood glucose and lipid profile (HDL, LDL, and TG) in people already diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. The lipid profile is the set of blood tests used to detect abnormalities in lipids such as triglycerides and cholesterol. Lipid profile test values can help to identify certain genetic diseases and also provide a rough estimate of the risk of certain forms of pancreatitis and cardiovascular problems and other diseases. Even greater health benefits from magnesium intake have been observed in people with magnesium deficiency (hypomagnesemia) (22, 23).
- Blood pressure and the heart. A link has also been found between inadequate blood magnesium and a persistently higher than normal arterial blood pressure (hypertension) as well as the risk of coronary heart disease (11). Oral intake of magnesium (for at least 6 months) may also have a beneficial effect on endothelial function in people over 50 years of age with an above-average BMI. The endothelium is the thin membrane surrounding the heart and the inside of the blood vessels. Substances released by endothelial cells control the contraction and relaxation of blood vessels, as well as enzymes that control immune function, blood clotting, and platelet adhesion (23). As magnesium deficiency in people with heart failure can contribute to life-threatening cardiac arrhythmias and/or sudden cardiac death, people with already diagnosed coronary heart disease should consult their doctor about the possible need for additional magnesium supplementation (24).
- Risk of serious diseases. Results from some studies suggest that increasing daily dietary intake of magnesium by 100 mg may be associated with a reduction in the risk of all-cause mortality (↓6%) and cancer (↓5%) (25). Magnesium is a mineral that may also play a role in stroke prevention (19, 26). However, we would urge you to take the results of all the studies listed as indicative rather than definitive and to consult your doctor before taking any supplements.
- Pregnancy. Data from studies also suggest a possible link between inadequate magnesium intake during pregnancy and the rate of premature births (27).
You can read more about the magnesium content in different foods, the role of magnesium in your body, and the importance of magnesium for children here.
When does your body need magnesium the most?
- During heavy exercise.
- During pregnancy and breastfeeding.
- During and after puberty.
- In older age in general.
- Due to limited absorption in the small intestine.
- Due to the administration of certain drugs such as proton pump inhibitors (drugs that inhibit gastric acid production), diuretics (drugs that increase urine excretion), and tacrolimus (a macrolide antibiotic with immunosuppressive effects).
- During periods of severe mental stress.
- Long-term stress.
- If you have a high intake of refined foods and stimulants (coffee, energy drinks, etc.).
An all-too-common problem today.
As discussed, magnesium is a critical mineral in the human body, involved in most (~80% known) metabolic functions and in more than 300 vital enzymatic reactions, such as the transfer of genetic information, the uptake of other vitamins and trace elements, the activation of amino acids, etc. Magnesium is believed to be involved in energy production, blood pressure regulation, and participation in muscle and nerve function. So, magnesium is the mineral we absolutely have to get every day, and getting magnesium from food should be easy.
Unfortunately, magnesium is the second nutrient, after vitamin D, that people are most deficient in, especially in developed countries.
It is estimated that 60% of adults currently do not get enough magnesium in their diet, and according to some sources, magnesium deficiency may also be linked to several health problems such as hypertension, diabetes, and neurological disorders. Low magnesium levels have also been linked to osteoporosis or bone thinning. But these are just a few of the list.
The main causes of magnesium deficiency are probably the all too widespread use of inappropriate dietary practices, certain medicines, and agricultural techniques. In fact, it is estimated that the mineral content of vegetables may have declined by as much as 80-90% over the last 100 years.
Modern diet dilemma:
Why aren’t we getting enough magnesium from our food?
Despite the importance of magnesium to human health and well-being, around 60% of people do not consume the recommended daily amount of magnesium (between 310 and 420 mg per day for adults, depending on their gender). Even more concerning, 19% do not even get half of the recommended amount! This magnesium deficiency is caused both by a low intake of minerals due to modern diets and also by modern agricultural practices that limit minerals in food, including magnesium.
- Why don’t most people get enough magnesium from their diet? The foods with the highest magnesium content are leafy vegetables (about 78 mg/serving), nuts and almonds (about 80 mg/serving), and whole grains (about 46 mg/serving), none of which contain enough magnesium on their own. Similarly, these foods are not usually consumed in sufficient quantities to provide an adequate daily intake of magnesium.
Take this quiz: Do you eat, for example, 2.5 cups of spinach or a 100-gram pack of almonds every day? If so, your body’s magnesium stores are probably adequate based on current data, and you should continue to do so. But also pay attention to this concerning data…
- Why can’t we be sure how much magnesium our food contains? Increasing demand for food has meant that modern farming techniques are affecting the soil’s ability to replenish its natural minerals, including magnesium. In addition, the use of phosphate fertilizers, for example, has led to the formation of water-insoluble magnesium phosphate complexes, which further deplete the soil of both components. Many fruits and vegetables have lost large amounts of minerals and nutrients over the last 100 years, with magnesium levels in vegetables estimated to have fallen by 80-90% in the US and UK, for example. It’s important to note that the USDA’s mineral content of vegetables and fruits has not been updated since 2000, and perhaps even longer (31).
As agricultural and fertilization practices have evolved over the last 50 years, this process has likely worsened. The mineral content needs to be verified to determine the extent of demineralisation of these food sources. There is therefore a clear need for a new initiative to investigate the current mineral content of selectively grown vegetables and fruits and to obtain an up-to-date and validated estimate of the mineral and nutrient content of the essential nutrients in the fruits and vegetables (31), so that we know exactly the amount of minerals in our food.
Factors at play:
Causes and risks of magnesium deficiency.
- The soil is depleted of minerals. As mentioned above, one of the factors contributing to magnesium deficiency is thought to be the over-cultivation, as well as the use of pesticides, which has led to the lack of minerals in soil. If there are no nutrients and minerals in the soil, there is no way for plants to absorb these minerals. It is estimated that the mineral content of vegetables has declined by as much as 80-90 % over the last 100 years (31).
- Poor or inappropriate diet and lifestyle factors. Today, it’s often difficult for people to get magnesium but it’s too easy for them to lose it. Poor diets (especially for the elderly or those who can’t get enough to eat), alcohol, coffee, and other stimulants as well as energy drinks, excessive sugar intake, and vitamin E deficiency all contribute to loss of magnesium in the body. Caffeine and alcohol intake, for example, increases the excretion of magnesium by the kidneys, which in turn increases the body’s demand for magnesium. So if you’re addicted to caffeine, candy, soda, or other sugary beverages, or if you eat too few green vegetables, leafy greens, and raw, unprocessed nuts and seeds – you may be at higher risk of magnesium deficiency.
- Food preparation. Similarly, foods that have been processed or over-refined at high temperatures have lost their nutritional value. It is now estimated that up to 60% of today’s diets consist of processed foods. Processing methods such as bleaching cereals and cooking vegetables can lead to a loss of up to 80% of the magnesium content in food. High phosphoric acid beverages, such as soft drinks, low protein foods (less than 30 mg/day), and foods containing phytates, polyphenols, and oxalic acid, such as rice and nuts, all contribute to magnesium deficiency because of their ability to bind magnesium and produce insoluble precipitates that negatively affect magnesium availability and absorption (31).
- Mental health problems. Prolonged stress and anxiety can also contribute to the depletion of magnesium stores in the body.
- Certain health problems. The body’s demand for magnesium can also be increased by certain health conditions such as type 2 diabetes, digestive problems (e.g. Crohn’s disease, coeliac disease, and limited absorption in the small intestine), kidney problems, prolonged vomiting, or diarrhea.
- Certain medicines can cause low magnesium levels if taken for prolonged periods:
- diuretics (medicines that promote urine excretion, such as furosemide and bumetanide),
- proton pump inhibitors (medicines that inhibit the production of stomach acid, for example, to treat reflux),
- cardiac medicines,
- antacids (e.g. omeprazole) due to an increase in gastrointestinal pH,
- tacrolimus (immunosuppressive macrolide antibiotics),
- oral contraceptives, i.e. contraceptives used to prevent pregnancy.
- and Antibiotics (e.g., ciprofloxacin)
- Physical overload. Heavy exercise and sweating (as several minerals other than magnesium leave the body with sweat) are also factors that cause your body’s magnesium stores to rapidly decrease. Therefore, your body may need extra magnesium if you exercise regularly or do hard, manual labor.
- Pregnancy and breastfeeding. In addition to magnesium, this is a time when a woman’s body also needs several other different minerals and vitamins at slightly higher levels.
- Age. The body also uses more magnesium in women in transition, after menopause, and in older age in general.
- The interaction of certain nutrients. Calcium and magnesium are related, so if you take calcium supplements, or like to consume too much regular dairy products, you’re also at an above-average risk of magnesium deficiency.
- Drinking water. Magnesium in drinking water accounts for about 10% of the acceptable daily intake, but increased use of softened/purified tap water may contribute to magnesium deficiency due to filtering or complexing of this metal. Complexation is the process by which an atom or compound forms a complex with another atom. In addition, fluoride (which is also present to a greater or lesser extent in the drinking water, depending on its location) prevents the absorption of magnesium by binding it and forming insoluble complexes. Thus, if you use a water softener and/or drink tap water, magnesium deficiency can also sneak in unnoticed (31, 32, 33, 34).
People who live near the ocean (a good source of magnesium), eat food grown in magnesium-rich soil, and drink magnesium-rich water may not have to worry about magnesium deficiency. However, this is not the case for most people living on Earth (33).
Reading the signs:
Recognizing symptoms of magnesium deficiency.
If you have a certain nutrient deficiency, your body will usually send you signs. In case of a magnesium deficiency, these signs may include:
- muscle spasms and cramps, including painful leg cramps, because muscles depend on magnesium to relax and grow,
- loss of appetite,
- nausea and vomiting,
- fatigue and weakness,
- tremors or tingling sensations in the hands and feet,
- excessive anxiety,
- drowsiness and sleep problems,
- abnormal heart rhythm and palpitations,
- hypertension or high blood pressure,
- constant tightness and tension in the body,
- behavioral problems,
- memory problems and blurred thinking,
- sadness and depression,
- anger and aggression,
- attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD),
- obsessive-compulsive disorder,
- eyelid twitching,
- persistent fatigue and nervousness,
- pains such as muscle aches, chronic back pain, headaches,
- as well as caries on the teeth and stunted jaw growth, which leaves insufficient room for the teeth to grow,
- magnesium deficiency may also be indicated by the conditions below:
- osteoporosis, or bone thinning, because magnesium plays a more important role than calcium in bone health,
- chronic fatigue syndrome,
- kidney stones and adrenal fatigue,
- atrial fibrillation (irregular heartbeat), heart disease, and sudden death in people with congestive heart failure (28, 32, 35).
If you suspect magnesium deficiency, try best absorbing magnesium supplements such as Ecosh Liposomal Magnesium.
The undiagnosed concern:
Challenges in measuring magnesium levels in the body.
Since magnesium affects almost all organs, it is claimed that magnesium deficiency can be a contributing factor for more diseases than deficiency of any other nutrient.
Unfortunately, magnesium deficiency is difficult to diagnose medically because blood tests may not always show the right picture of deficiency. In fact, only 0.8% of magnesium is found in the blood, of which 0.3% is in serum and 0.5% in red blood cells, with typical total serum magnesium concentrations ranging from 0.65 to 1.0 mmol/liter. The remainder is distributed in soft tissues (19%), muscles (27%), and bones (53%).
Up to one-third of the magnesium stored in bone is exchangeable, and although the total amount of magnesium stored in bone may change with age, bone remains the most important region for stored and exchangeable magnesium (31).
Thus, blood serum magnesium levels do not reflect the actual amount of magnesium in the body (31).
As a result, magnesium deficiency is often not suspected and millions of people are increasingly taking drugs to alleviate their symptoms, when in some cases they could easily help themselves by a proper diet or, alternatively, magnesium supplements such as liposomal magnesium. So the first thing to do is to be able to spot the signs of a possible magnesium deficiency.
Of course, the symptoms listed below could be caused by something else, but if several of them occur at the same time, magnesium deficiency is a real possibility. This problematic issue of how it is almost impossible to measure levels of such an important mineral in the body is discussed further under the heading “Why it is difficult to measure magnesium levels in the body and why magnesium deficiency can often be undiagnosed”.
In fact, signs of magnesium deficiency can be present in almost anyone, but, we just don’t notice them.
Why a blood test may not give an accurate picture of magnesium levels and possible deficiencies in your body
Depending on age, the current ‘normal’ range for serum magnesium is 0.7-1 mmol/l and was established based on serum magnesium levels collected in a 1971-1974 US study of presumably healthy people aged 1-74 years (31, 36).
Serum changes may be influenced mainly by dietary intake of magnesium and albumin levels, but also by short-term changes, such as day-to-day and hour-to-hour variations in the amount of magnesium absorbed and excreted by the kidneys.
It has been shown that magnesium levels in the blood increase in response to magnesium supplementation, but this does not mean that a perfect balance has been achieved between the blood and the body’s reserves of magnesium, which are almost 100 times greater.
As you will recall, the blood only contains about up to 0.8% of the total magnesium in the body. This means that the remaining 99.2% is elsewhere.
In fact, the body’s much larger exchangeable magnesium reserve is more often called upon to increase the magnesium level in the blood to preferentially maintain the narrow magnesium reference range there. Why?
Because even a slight drop in blood magnesium levels increases the risk of a heart attack (yes, magnesium’s role in building muscles is not about building muscle from the bodybuilding point of view, but first and foremost, your body wants to keep vital muscles like your heart working). Your body knows the danger and, to prevent the heart from malfunctioning, and to keep blood magnesium levels stable and adequate – it robs magnesium from all of its stores – cells, tissues, other skeletal muscles, and bones (31, 35).
This is the main reason why blood tests can mask true magnesium deficiency. Shortly, it simply means that your blood always keeps its magnesium levels within the normal range, but it is the 99.2% of magnesium that is found in other tissues that makes up the actual magnesium status of the body. Blood analysis may show normal magnesium levels even if the cells are at the same time empty of magnesium (31, 35).
Why urine analysis may not give an accurate picture of magnesium levels and possible deficiencies in your body
The excretion of magnesium in urine regulates the balance of magnesium in the body. However, because of the large amount of magnesium excreted and the variable reabsorption and secretion, urinary magnesium levels do not correlate with the amount of magnesium consumed, nor with the magnesium status of the body. In addition, the amount of excreted magnesium in urine also depends on the plasma calcium concentration and the volume of extracellular fluid (31, 37).
Therefore, the results of urine analyses should be viewed critically because of the large variability in renal reabsorption and excretion of magnesium. The same goes for fecal magnesium levels (31).
Choosing the right one for you:
Comparing different types of magnesium supplements.
When you’re looking for a magnesium supplement to suit your needs, you may have noticed that magnesium can have different names on the product label. In this case, however, you can’t quite say that the good guy has several names, because these names are not synonyms or aliases, but mean something quite different. Namely, the different properties of magnesium absorption and the possibility of unwanted side effects.
When comparing the different types of magnesium and their characteristics, magnesium citrate and magnesium glycinate can be considered as the safest and best-absorbed forms of magnesium and magnesium oxide as the worst.
Below, we describe the main characteristics of the different types of magnesium supplements, so that you can decide for yourself which one is right for you. Of course, we also advise you to consult your doctor beforehand, who will be familiar with your health and may be able to recommend the most suitable type of magnesium for you.
Magnesium types – magnesium glycinate, magnesium citrate, magnesium taurate, magnesium carbonate, magnesium chloride, magnesium L-threonate and magnesium malate
- Magnesium glycinate. For the sake of clarity, other names for magnesium glycinate are magnesium diglucinate, magnesium bisglycinate, and magnesium bisglycinate chelate. All these names actually mean the same substance. It is a magnesium chelate compound with good absorption and bioavailability. Here, magnesium is linked to glycine, which is an amino acid. Magnesium glycinate is one of the most bioavailable and better absorbed forms of magnesium, and also one of the least likely to cause diarrhea. It is also the safest type of magnesium for correcting long-term deficiency. Studies have shown that magnesium glycinate, as one of the better-absorbed forms, suits well for those with intestinal disorders such as diarrhea or who have undergone bowel reduction surgery, as it absorbs well from different parts of the intestine (26, 27). As magnesium glycinate is the safest form for long-term intake, it is considered the best form, especially for severe magnesium deficiency. Magnesium glycinate helps to relax the muscles and also brings good sleep, so it is most convenient to take magnesium glycinate (in the evenings) before going to bed for 1h – 30 min.
- Magnesium citrate. Magnesium citrate is also one of the most popular types of magnesium, probably due to its low cost and relatively good absorption. It is a reaction product of citric acid and magnesium and can contain up to about 16% pure magnesium. As the citric acid in magnesium citrate is a mild solvent, magnesium citrate acts as both – a constipation reliever and a source of magnesium. It is an excellent choice for people who suffer from constipation or other rectal or colon problems but is not suitable for those whose bowels move freely or sometimes too easily. One exception, however, is the liposomal magnesium citrate, where the liposome protects against such effects and helps the magnesium to be absorbed even better.
- Magnesium taurate. Magnesium taurate, a compound of magnesium and taurine (an amino acid), is considered one of the best choices for those with cardiovascular problems. Magnesium taurate is readily absorbed (magnesium and taurine stabilize cell membranes together) and does not contain laxative properties.
- Magnesium carbonate. This magnesium compound can contain up to approximately 29-45% pure magnesium. Magnesium carbonate is also a fairly popular and bioavailable form of magnesium but is actually converted in the body to magnesium chloride when mixed with hydrochloric acid in the stomach. As magnesium carbonate contains antacid properties, it may be a good choice for people suffering from indigestion and acid reflux.
- Magnesium chloride. Although magnesium chloride contains only about 12% of elemental magnesium, it has an impressive absorption capacity because it is better absorbed than magnesium oxide, for example, which contains almost 5 times more pure magnesium. In addition, chloride (not to be confused with chlorine, a poisonous gas) can support kidney function and speed up slow metabolism.
- Magnesium L-threonate. This is a newer type of magnesium supplement that is just gaining popularity and appears to promise good absorption and also effective tissue-cellular uptake.
- Magnesium malate. Magnesium malate is also a good choice for people suffering from fatigue. It’s because malic acid – a natural fruit acid also present in most cells of the body – is an essential component of enzymes that play a key role in ATP synthesis and energy production. Since the ionic bonds between magnesium and malic acid are easily broken, magnesium malate should also be highly soluble (38).
Which is the worst type of magnesium – magnesium oxide, magnesium sulfate, magnesium glutamate, and magnesium aspartate
- Magnesium oxide. The least absorbable, non-chlorinated type of magnesium is magnesium oxide/oxalate, which is a very cheap raw material and has a fairly high elemental magnesium content (58%), but your body can absorb only 4% of it. It is not chelated but is bound to organic or fatty acids. In addition, according to some sources, long-term consumption of magnesium oxide can clog the kidneys and cause diarrhea.
- Magnesium sulfate. Magnesium sulfate, also known as Epsom salts, is a fantastic remedy for constipation but is an unsafe source of magnesium because it is easy to overdose. Magnesium sulfate can contain up to approximately 42% pure magnesium and should be used with caution.
- Magnesium glutamate and magnesium aspartate. You should completely avoid these two. Glutamic acid and aspartic acid are components of the dangerous artificial sweetener aspartame, and both become neurotoxic unless combined with other amino acids (38).
Ecoh magnesium+B6, liposomal magnesium, and liquid magnesium from ocean water.
Surely you will find the right magnesium supplement for you in any well-stocked pharmacy, but if you’ve come to trust Ecoshi supplements, know that we have the 2 safest and best types of magnesium in our selection – magnesium glycinate and magnesium citrate.
Ecosh magnesium glycinate (magnesium+B6)
Together with the bioactive absorption enhancing vitamins B6 and C, magnesium glycinate contributes to the smooth functioning of the nervous system and muscles. Magnesium+B6 also helps reduce fatigue and tiredness.
Ecosh magnesium citrate (liposomal magnesium)
Liposomal technology makes it possible to create supplements that help make nutrients (such as vitamins, and minerals) more readily available to tissues and cells. Ecosh liposomal magnesium citrate contributes to efficient nervous system function, effective muscle function, and reduced fatigue and tiredness.
Ecosh liquid magnesium from ocean water
Ecoshi liquid magnesium is not just a magnesium supplement, as the seawater in this product also naturally contains over 70 minerals and trace elements. The unique complex of minerals in Ecosh liquid magnesium has been extracted from a depth of 662 m in remote waters off the east coast of Taiwan. Such conditions ensure the purity of the ocean water and the richness of nutrients and minerals.
Liquid magnesium, magnesium capsules, and the superiority of liposomal magnesium.
To get the shape of a tablet and a more or less tolerable taste for your taste buds, magnesium tablets require mechanical intervention. They are pressed, and dried, additives are added, and the tablets are treated to remove moisture. For this simple reason, a magnesium tablet also needs more different types of other substances.
Magnesium capsules are superior to magnesium tablets for a very simple reason. As a rule, they are less processed than magnesium tablets, because capsules simply do not need this kind of processing or so many additives. Capsules are also much easier to swallow. For example, you can even open Ecosh magnesium glycinate capsules, and take them simply as powder. Ecosh magnesium glycinate capsules are also suitable for children of school age. Ecosh liposomal magnesium citrate is also available in a capsule.
Liquid magnesium does not usually contain any additives. For example, Ecosh mineral concentrate MINERALEX, which contains not only magnesium but also sodium, potassium, calcium, chlorine, iodine, boron, iron, zinc, selenium, copper, molybdenum, manganese, chromium, sulfur and many other minerals essential for the body’s function – does not contain a single chemical or additive.
In general, magnesium can also be taken in the form of a powder, but this depends largely on the type of magnesium. A very good type to consume simply as a powder is for example magnesium citrate, as it dissolves well in water and also has a pleasant taste. The powder, when packed in sealed sachets, does not require any additional additives. Therefore, if we are talking about magnesium citrate powder, magnesium capsules do not have any advantages over powder in this case, as they are both good.
However, technologically, magnesium glycinate is the most complex form of magnesium to encapsulate (and it also requires some additives such as rice flour and anti-caking agents), but you cannot consume magnesium glycinate as a powder due to its flavor properties.
Magnesium flakes and Epsom salt
Other options for supplementing magnesium are magnesium flakes and Epsom salt, which are used in so-called magnesium baths and foot baths. Those types of magnesium are meant for external use only and are mostly magnesium chloride. Magnesium chloride does have its benefits, which we mentioned before (for example, it is safe and physically relaxing), but it is still not known how much magnesium is absorbed through the skin and there is a lot of skepticism about this.
How to help your body to better absorb magnesium.
- Type of magnesium. Several factors play a role in magnesium absorption, one of which is the solubility of the type of magnesium (inorganic salt, organic salt, chelate, etc.), with higher solubility correlating with higher absorption. As mentioned above, magnesium glycinate is considered to be one of the better absorbed, and liposomal magnesium citrate is even better.
- Gastrointestinal pH. Factors influencing absorption include the pH of the gastrointestinal tract, as it determines magnesium solubility. For example, a lower pH increases the solubility of magnesium. The same pH, or acidity level in your gastrointestinal tract makes it increasingly more difficult for magnesium to absorb as it moves down the gastrointestinal tract, where the pH rises steadily in the ileum to 7.4. Here, of course, we again recommend choosing liposomal magnesium, which has a clever trick up its sleeve to get around some of the gastrointestinal obstacles.
- Foods. Factors that promote the absorption of magnesium and help water to pass through the intestinal mucosa include simple sugars and urea. Therefore, foods containing carbohydrates and medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) increase magnesium absorption but also increase magnesium demand, as magnesium is critical for glucose breakdown and insulin release. Solid foods can also increase magnesium absorption by prolonging the transit time in the digestive tract. Dietary intake of increased fiber (e.g. cellulose, pectin, and inulin) does not appear to affect magnesium status but may increase magnesium excretion in feces (34).
- Vitamins and other minerals. Other nutrients that may contribute to magnesium absorption include:
- B-group vitamins, especially B6, which help determine how much magnesium your cells absorb;
- D (vitamin C), vitamin C (vitamin D),
- and the minerals calcium, potassium, sodium, etc.
Therefore, it is always a good idea to take magnesium supplements with food to ensure that all the other nutrients needed for absorption are available.
For example, Ecosh’s magnesium glycinate also contains bioactive vitamin B6 (pyridoxal-5′-phosphate) for better absorption of magnesium.
Why are bioactive forms good? Bioactive forms are already adapted for metabolism, and the exhausted body doesn’t have to expend that little energy it has to actively convert the inactive form to active.
Making the right moves:
Recommended daily intakes of magnesium.
According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the recommended daily intakes of magnesium are:
- Girls and boys from birth to 6 months of age: 30 mg*.
- Girls and boys aged 7-12 months: 75 mg*.
- Girls and boys aged 1 to 3 years: 80 mg.
- Girls and boys aged 4-8 years: 130 mg.
- Girls and boys aged 9-13 years: 240 mg
- Girls aged 14-18 years: 360 mg (at this age, 400 mg per day during conception and 360 mg per day during lactation).
- Boys aged 14-18 years: 410 mg
- Women aged 19-30 years: 310 mg (350 mg/day for women of childbearing age, and 310 mg/day for breastfeeding mothers).
- Men aged 19-30 years: 400 mg
- Women aged 31-50 years: 320 mg (women of this age who have had children 360 mg per day, and breastfeeding mothers 320 mg per day).
- Men aged 31-50 years: 420 mg
- Women aged 51+ years: 320 mg
- Men aged 51+ years: 420 mg (29).
* Adequate consumption.
Eating the right way:
The best magnesium-rich foods.
As a general rule, foods high in fiber also contain the most magnesium. Some good sources of magnesium are green leafy vegetables (e.g. spinach), legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grain products. Tap, mineral and bottled waters can also be a source of magnesium, but their magnesium content depends on several variables. Below are the approximate and expected magnesium contents of selected foods.
Magnesium content in selected foods:
- Pumpkin seeds, roasted, 28 g (1 oz): 156 mg.
- Chia seeds, 28 g (1 oz): 111 mg.
- Almonds, dry roasted, 28 g (1 oz): 80 mg.
- Spinach, cooked, ½ cup: 78 mg.
- Indian nuts, dry roasted, 28 g (1 oz): 74 mg.
- Peanuts, oil-roasted, ¼ cup: 63 mg.
- Soya milk, plain or vanilla, 1 cup: 61 mg.
- Black beans, cooked, ½ cup: 60 mg.
- Edamame beans or young soybeans, shelled, cooked, ½ cup: 50 mg.
- Peanut butter, 2 tablespoons: 49 mg.
- Potatoes, baked, with skin, 99 g (3,5 oz): 43 mg.
- Rice, brown, cooked, ½ cup: 42 mg.
- Yoghurt, plain, low fat, 227 g (8 oz): 42 mg.
- Breakfast cereals, enriched with 10% magnesium, 1 serving: 42 mg.
- Fast oatmeal, 1 pack: 36 mg.
- Kidney beans, canned, ½ cup: 35 mg.
- Banana, 1 medium: 32 mg.
- Atlantic salmon, farmed, cooked, 85 g (3 oz): 26 mg.
- Milk, 1 cup: 24-27 mg.
- Raisins, ½ cup: 23 mg.
- Wholemeal bread, 1 slice: 23 mg.
- Avocado, diced, ½ cup: 22 mg.
- Chicken breast fillet, roasted, 85 g (3 oz): 22 mg.
- Beef mince, 90% lean meat, pan-fried, 85 g (3 oz): 20 mg.
- Broccoli, cooked and sliced, ½ cup: 12 mg.
- Rice, white, cooked, ½ cup: 10 mg.
- Apple, 1 medium: 9 mg.
- Carrot, raw, 1 medium: 7 mg (35, 39).
The amounts of magnesium in foods given are approximate and may, of course, vary depending on the methods of growing and processing the food. It is also worth knowing that if the rest of your diet is high in fat, you may be getting less magnesium from your food (30). You can read more about magnesium-rich foods here.
A final word:
Is liposomal magnesium safe?
Liposomes have been used to deliver drugs into cells for more than 20 years, and during this time there have been observed no adverse reactions due to the liposomes themselves or the use of liposome technology.
The bottom line:
What you need to know about magnesium supplements.
Magnesium supplements are different. Both in their chemical form and in their composition. Therefore, their absorption by the body is also different (11, 12). In essence, this means that if you take different magnesium supplements – your body will absorb magnesium from them differently. Sometimes more, sometimes less.
However, liposomal encapsulation technology ensures enhanced absorption of the active ingredient (be it a drug, a vitamin, or a mineral), while at the same time ensuring its controlled release and targeted delivery to the human body.
Encapsulation of nutrients in liposomes ensures a higher absorption rate as well as a higher bioavailability, which means that your cells process magnesium better.
Powdered liposomal magnesium therefore helps to overcome more effectively the barriers associated with magnesium absorption and supports normal body functioning in the event of magnesium deficiency and increased magnesium requirements.
Liposomal magnesium is primarily designed to support your body in case of magnesium deficiency and increased magnesium needs. Ecosh Powdered Liposomal Magnesium is well absorbed, stable, and supports the normal functioning of muscles, the nervous system, and psychological functions in case of magnesium deficiency. In addition, it contributes to the reduction of fatigue and the formation of strong bones and healthy teeth.
In case of intolerance to any of the ingredients, do not use the products described in this story. The information provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be considered as health care or medical diagnosis and treatment. This information should not be taken as a guarantee of results to be achieved.
The information provided is also not intended to be a substitute for the advice of your physician or other health care professionals. Do not use the information herein to diagnose or treat a health problem. You should consult a health care professional before changing or stopping treatment for any health problem, treatment, or medication, even if you suspect that you may have a health problem. Do not use supplements as a substitute for a varied diet. It is important to eat a varied and balanced diet, to lead a healthy lifestyle, and to listen to your gut!
Written by Maria-Helena Loik
Pictures: Pexels.com, Pixabay.com, Shutterstock.com
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