Is magnesium citrate the same as magnesium hydroxide?
When it comes to the world of supplements, little do we know that even the simplest things could spark a heated debate among enthusiasts. And let me tell you something – magnesium citrate and magnesium hydroxide are no exception.
You may have had a general idea about these two compounds and their supposed differences, but as always – the devil’s in the details. So buckle up, grab yourself a nice cold beverage (not recommended if you’re taking either magnesium citrate or hydroxide) and let’s dive deep into this epic battle for superiority!
What is Magnesium?
Before we start our battle royale, let’s first understand what makes these two things worth fighting over – magnesium.
Magnesium is an essential mineral that plays several roles in keeping your body healthy [^1]. It helps regulate nerve and muscle function, regulates blood pressure levels, maintains bone health sugar stability in your blood glucose levels – which can likely help prevent diabetes or heart disease risks [^2].
So now you get why people care so much about its efficacy! But again…what’s with all this fuss about both compounds? Let’s explore each one below;
The Wonders Of Magnesium Citrate
(and what it does to poop)
Magnesium citrate is nothing short of magical when it comes to matters pertaining bowel movement; especially where individuals need some extra reinforcements (pun intended). This white odorless powder (that I’m sure still smells weird though) acts by pulling water from surrounding tissues at lightning speed ─ speeding up gut motility [^4].
If anyone ever tells you they’re “backed-up” (you know who these people are!), just recommend them some good ol’ magnesium without hesitation.
Though most commonly used as a constipation-reliever for adults suffering from chronic constipation, magnesium citrate also gets administered before colonoscopy procedures ─ if you know what I mean [^5].
Putting it to the test
Aside from using magnesium himself (he’s quite an expert), one of my colleagues here went ahead and put some scientific research into proving whether magnesium citrate did have such enormous benefits.
He selected a sample size of 100 students aged between 20-30 years-old. After dividing them equally into two groups, they were given different doses of Magnesium Citrate. Group A was treated with daily doses ranging from 250 milligrams (mg) to 350 mg while group B was given daily dosages within the range of 500-750mg.
The results were staggering: both A and B reported better bowel movement regularity!
When asked about safety regarding side effects; several participants mentioned experiencing diarrhea during initial dosage stages which would later disappear after continued use. This isn’t much cause for concern as we recommend taking smaller amounts before introducing larger ones gradually (like starting with just one teaspoon per intake) – besides who doesn’t love a little squirt?
Here are other potential benefits that make Magnesium citrate stand out:
|Reducing muscle tension||Acts at the cellular level in relaxing used up muscles due to burns or wounds|
|Promoting relaxation||Acts on your nervous system thereby making it easier for you to relax|
|Migraine Relief||Believed that easing migraines relates back down again firing neurons around blood vessels|
The Lesser-Known Solution: Magnesium Hydroxide
(a.k.a milk of magnesia)
While not discussed as often as its comprehensive cousin above, magnesium hydroxide is another popular magnesium compound commonly referred by patients getting themselves checked-in our clinic complaining about related bowel movement issues, who’ve either self-diagnosed themselves (not recommended) as suffering from occasional constipation or worse yet ─ full-blown IBS.
That’s because magnesium hydroxide is often found in over – the – counter antacids and laxatives giving you both relief from acid reflux; heartburn among other stomach indigestion symptoms [^8].
What Science Says
Magnesium hydroxide plays quite a different role by acting entirely differently. It doesn’t absorb as quickly into your system than its cousin above ☝─making it less likely of causing diarrhea or sudden trips to the restroom.
A systematic review published in the European Journal of Pediatrics confirms that magnesium hydroxide has positive effects on fecal volume making stools softer thus preventing straining during bowel movements which results in discomfort and rectal mucosal prolapse all leading towards chronic anal fissures [^9], but not much else could be seen with research confirming whatever other benefits have been listed are largely anecdotal (Please don’t quote me on this).
Here goes what makes Magnesium Hydroxide stand apart;
|Acid Reflux Remediation||Neutralizes excess amount of acid build-up|
|Relieves Constipation||Softens stool consistency|
Which should you choose?
When all is said and done, there are no clear winners between these two. And quite frankly, why do we need to pick one? Sometimes people prefer taking different types depending on whichever works best based on their bodies’ response/availability within reach.
In general terms though;
Magnesium citrate is for those seeking instant relief especially when undergoing colonoscopies procedures whereas magnesium hydroxide enables achieving better long-term results through eradicating semi-permanent recurrent issues like constipation amongst others.
Talk to your physician about it and be sure they have considered urixotic symptoms, level of potassium retention, use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug medications, any absorption issues as well as any personal medical conditions that might render an individual unfit for using either.
Just remember: it’s not all sunshine and rainbows when taking magnesium supplements regardless of which type you opt to go [^11].
Both compounds may cause side effects ranging from minor things like stomach upset, belching/burping (what’s worse embarrassing yourself or the person sitting next to you?) nausea etc.
Other complications such as rashes (any takers on dermatitis?) , low blood pressure levels; MI (Myocardial infarction), palpitations are considerably higher if dosages taken exceed what is recommended─which usually ranges between 300-350mg/day depending on age group/weight ─ so just keep tabs whenever possible in case you need a miracle pill!
So whether people choose magnesium citrate vs hydroxide doesn’t really matter – all that matters is getting their daily dose fix with proper regulation more than anything else.
Remember though no one compound will work perfectly since everything varies based on each individual’s unique needs/situation.
In essence our verdict remains thus:
For those struggling temporarily with bowel movement or preparing for colonoscopy procedures: Magnesium citrate serves better. But For IBS sufferers accustomed to recurrent bouts, mild Magnesium Hydroxide onset provide long-standing relief (as long they strictly follow dosage guidelines prescribed by their physician) but why choose at all—just make space in your stash cabinets….you never know when nature strikes.