Magnesium: what is the best form?

If you think you are lacking in magnesium, or if you wish to benefit from its protective and preventive effects on health, it is first necessary to pay particular attention to your diet.

To supplement your intake, it may be worthwhile to take a magnesium cure by taking dietary supplements.

Which magnesium dietary supplement to choose?

Magnesium is present in supplements in the form of "salt", i.e. a combination of magnesium with another mineral.

There are many forms of magnesium, which can be separated into 3 categories: the insoluble inorganic salts (oxide, chloride, hydroxide ...), the soluble organic salts (citrate, lactate ...) and the soluble organic complexes (malate, bisglycinate). These different forms of magnesium do not all have the same characteristics.

What makes them different: their elemental magnesium content, their bioavailability (quantity of magnesium really absorbed by the body), their undesirable effects and of course... their price.

So, which type of magnesium choose and why? Let's take a closer look at the most common forms of magnesium found in dietary supplements.

Magnesium oxide and hydroxide

These are two widespread and inexpensive forms of magnesium.

Despite their high elemental magnesium content, magnesium oxide and magnesium hydroxide are very poorly assimilated by the body and have a laxative effect.

Marine magnesium

Marine magnesium is a natural type of magnesium extracted from seawater.

It is a mixture of inorganic salts, such as oxide or hydroxide, with a good elemental magnesium content but a fairly low bioavailability. Moreover, it can cause digestive intolerance (stomach aches, diarrhoea,…).

Magnesium citrate

Magnesium citrate is a magnesium salt bound with citric acid. Well absorbed and assimilated by the body, citrate is a fairly popular type.

Nevertheless, it can have a slight laxative effect, which requires a careful consumption (by gradually increasing the dose, for example).

Magnesium malate

This form of magnesium is obtained by combining magnesium with malic acid, which is found in fruits such as oranges.

Together, they form a magnesium salt with excellent bioavailability (significantly higher than previous forms of magnesium). Another advantage: Malate helps to "chelate" heavy metals, i.e. detoxify the body.

Magnesium bisglycinate

Magnesium bisglycinate is a 3rd generation magnesium salt composed of magnesium and glycine, an amino acid known for its soothing and relaxing properties.

This chelated form, ultra assimilable, is also very well tolerated by the body. Like malate, bisglycinate does not cause any digestive problems and does not accelerate transit. Its advantage: its elemental magnesium content is slightly higher than malate.

Magnesium bisglycinate is therefore ideal for sportsmen and women, but also for people who are stressed, tired or suffer from sleep disorders. It is also recommended for people with a fragile intestine and for whom other forms of magnesium could have a negative effect.

To summarise, here is a comparative table:

FormMagnesium element contentBioavailability
Magnesium oxide60,3%Low
Magnesium hydroxide41,5%Low
Magnesium citrate16%High
Magnesium malate15%Very high
Magnesium bisglycinate20%Very high

In the end, what is the best type?

Malate and bisglycinate are the two forms of magnesium that we recommend.

They are rich in elemental magnesium, are highly bioavailable and are very well tolerated. Their disadvantage is that they are more expensive than other forms of magnesium due to their more complex manufacturing process.

Why magnesium alone is never found in dietary supplements?

In food supplements, magnesium is most often accompanied by taurine and B vitamins (especially vitamin B6 or pyridoxine).

These substances have the advantage of potentiating the effects and absorption of magnesium. It is therefore strongly advised to choose a supplement that contains them.

Discover our Magnesium Bisglycinate

To help you enjoy the benefits of magnesium, we have developed our own magnesium-based formula, simply called... Magnesium Bisglycinate!

Formulated with naturopaths, our Magnesium Bisglycinate is a unique complex based on magnesium bisglycinate (the most bioavailable and best tolerated fat-soluble form). It also contains a blend of taurine, B vitamins and melatonin.

Together, these ingredients promote vitality, help reduce fatigue, improve resistance to stress and help you sleep better. Its main characteristics:

  • High magnesium content (300 mg elemental magnesium per dose)
  • Exceptional assimilation
  • Gentle on the stomach
  • Synergistic effects (taurine, B vitamins and melatonin)
  • Economical size (120 capsules, that is 1 month and a half of use).
  • 100% vegetarian and vegan (vegetarian capsules)
  • Made in France