Just like most other supplements out there, a magnesium supplement can either be a useful addition to your daily diet or a total waste of money! But given the fact that most people don’t get enough of this essential nutrient from their regular diet, supplementation is more likely than not to be beneficial.
Among the various forms of magnesium supplements on the market, magnesium glycinate is widely considered the best as many experts and consumers would argue. This is a chelated form of magnesium, which means unlike other forms/salts of this mineral, it does not instantly break down into charged ions once it enters the digestive tract, but rather it gets absorbed as a whole molecule and gets broken down afterwards.
Being more efficiently absorbed, having higher bioavailability, and not upsetting the stomach or causing diarrhea are the main advantages of magnesium glycinate over other forms, such as oxide, chloride, carbonate, etc.
But not all magnesium glycinate supplements are the same either. Some products are pure and clean without any unnecessary additives, while others are loaded with junk fillers that do your body no good. Not many people bother to read the full list of ingredients before they buy a supplement, but if you care what you’re putting into your body, you definitely should do that.
So, the following are three of the cleanest magnesium glycinate supplement brands that you can buy online. These are all free from magnesium stearate, harmful additives, artificial ingredients, and unnecessary fillers.
1. Pure Encapsulations (Vegetarian Capsules)
If you are looking for a professional supplement brand you can trust then Pure Encapsulations is one of the most notable ones out there. This doctor-trusted brand uses high-quality ingredients that are fully tested to make sure they are authentic, pure and free from heavy metals and most allergens.
Magnesium glycinate by Pure Encapsulations contains only two additional ingredients: vegetarian capsules and ascorbyl palmitate (a form of vitamin C). This premium brand is a little pricey though, so if you are looking for something cheaper, check out the next one.
2. NOW Foods (Powder & Tablets)
NOW Foods is also among the most reputable supplement companies and one of the most affordable too. They offer different types of magnesium supplements in powder, capsule and tablet forms.
NOW’s magnesium bisglycinate (same as glycinate) comes in two forms: powder and tablets. The powder is the cleaner version as it only contains one additional ingredient, namely citric acid (antioxidant). You can drink it with plain water or add it to a smoothie, shake, etc.
The tablets do contain a few additional ingredients which are commonly used in encapsulated products and are generally considered safe to consume. However, the powder isn’t only cleaner, it’s also more economical as you get the same amount of servings (with even a higher dosage) for less.
3. Klean Athlete (Vegetarian Capsules)
Klean Magnesium by Klean Athlete is pretty clean in terms of ingredients. Besides magnesium glycinate, it contains vegetarian capsules and ascorbyl palmitate (vitamin C as an antioxidant) — and that’s all.
This brand is particularly popular among athletes since the company is primarily focused on sports nutrition and their products are NSF certified for sport. But you don’t have to be an athletic person to take advantage of their quality magnesium supplement, so give it a try if you’d like!
Questions and Answers:
Does Magnesium Glycinate Have a Laxative Effect?
No, unlike other forms of magnesium — such as oxide, citrate, etc. — the glycinate form does not have a laxative effect and it normally does not cause diarrhea. When taking some of the cheaper, non-chelated magnesium supplements — like the oxide salt — most of the dose does not get absorbed by the body and ends up accumulating in the colon and causing diarrhea due to the laxative effect of magnesium ions.
On the other hand, because magnesium glycinate is one of the best-absorbed forms of magnesium, a relatively smaller percentage of the dose makes its way to the colon, but even when there, it does not have the same laxative effect because it does not break down into magnesium ions in the digestive tract.
Does Magnesium Glycinate Help You Sleep Better?
Well, that may depend on whether you are already taking enough magnesium or not. Insomnia is one of the known symptoms of magnesium deficiency, so if you are having trouble getting a good night’s sleep, then it may have to do with your low magnesium intake, in which case supplementation could be helpful.
Magnesium deficiency has also been linked to depression and anxiety, both of which can be a source of sleep problems. But it’s important to keep in mind that many other factors could possibly lead to sleeplessness, so there is no one-size-fits-all solution and there is no guarantee that magnesium will help you sleep better.
As far as magnesium glycinate is concerned, it is considered the best form for sleep support, not only because of its superior absorption rate, but also because it contains glycine (the glycinate part), which is an amino acid that works as an inhibitory neurotransmitter and may help promote restful sleep.
Does Magnesium Glycinate Work For Leg Cramps?
Leg and muscle cramps throughout the body can be a sign of magnesium deficiency, among many other things. If you often experience muscle cramps in your legs or other parts of the body, then taking a magnesium supplement may help. Magnesium glycinate would be a great choice given its advantages which we discussed above.
But magnesium isn’t the only mineral your muscles need to work properly. Potassium and calcium are also important for muscle function, and a deficiency in either or both of these minerals can also cause muscle cramps. So make sure you are getting enough amounts of each of these minerals, whether through food or supplements.
Why is Magnesium Glycinate More Expensive?
Magnesium glycinate is more expensive than other types of this mineral because it costs more to produce. Nevertheless, you can find many reasonably priced magnesium glycinate supplements from reputable brands. Given the fact that this form has a higher bioavailability than most of the cheaper forms, you’ll probably be getting more bang for your buck even if the price is a little higher.
What Happens if You Take Too Much Magnesium?
When taking a magnesium supplement, it is not recommended for adults to consume more than 400 mg in total per day. Taking too much magnesium can be counterproductive and can cause several side effects, which include: nausea, muscle weakness, muscle cramps, stomach upset, low blood pressure, depression, and others.
Although magnesium glycinate is one of the most tolerated magnesium supplements, exceeding the recommended daily dosage can cause adverse effects and add no benefits. It is best to consult with a doctor if you have specific health concerns or questions since most information online is not reliable and the experiences and conditions of other users may not apply to your individual case.