Magnesium For Weight Loss: Dosage, Sources, Side Effects

Magnesium is one of the essential minerals for a healthy body. It assists in hundreds of reactions in your body.

Using magnesium for constipation, improving, muscle and nerve function, and energy production is common.

This mineral in your body is mostly found in the bones, organs, and cells.

If you are obese or overweight, you have all the more reasons to learn about this mineral.

Some recent studies suggest that magnesium can help you lose weight. You may take magnesium supplements, but that alone will not make you shed weight. While you have this mineral in the right amount, you need to burn more calories than you eat to lose weight.

An Overview of Magnesium

Every part of your body needs magnesium, including the heart, liver, kidney, and bones. It helps with the vital functions of your body, like the production of energy and the activation of enzymes.

Magnesium helps maintain healthy levels of other important nutrients, like potassium, zinc, and vitamin D.

According to a report published by the American Journal of Medicine, low magnesium levels in your body can lead to congestive heart failure and an improper heart rhythm.

It is also necessary for keeping your bones and teeth healthy by regulating calcium levels.

Today, you can find dietary magnesium supplements in different forms: magnesium chloride, citrate, oxide, gluconate, or orotate.

It would be best if you took any of these magnesium supplements only when recommended by your doctor.

Signs of Magnesium Deficiency

A deficient magnesium level rarely occurs in the majority of the population. It happens for reasons like:

  • Use of certain medications like chemotherapy
  • Starvation
  • Hungry bone syndrome after thyroid surgery
  • Gastric bypass surgery
  • Chronic diarrhea.

The common symptoms of magnesium deficiency are:

  • Muscle twitches, tremors, or cramps
  • Shows mental health conditions like apathy, depression, anxiety, etc.
  • Osteoporosis is a condition that develops weak bones and increases the risk of bone fractures.
  • Physical and mental fatigue and muscle weakness
  • High blood pressure
  • Causes or worsens asthma
  • Develops irregular heartbeat that may lead to arrhythmia.

Magnesium And Weight Loss

There is no doubt that magnesium is an essential mineral required for several key body functions.

It regulates blood sugar, produces energy, and promotes chemical reactions required by the body. These are all key benefits of magnesium that help prevent obesity.

Magnesium can also play a crucial role in helping the body conduct nerve impulses, balance healthy heartbeats, trigger muscle contractions, and transport calcium and potassium.

By helping to improve the body’s key functions, it promotes a better metabolic rate and higher utilization of glucose.

Some studies suggest this mineral is helpful for weight loss and maintaining a healthy body weight.

However, it is not a weight loss supplement that will produce quick weight loss results within a week or two.

A mineral supplement with magnesium can make you lose weight if you change your diet and lifestyle habits required for shedding weight. Often, magnesium supplementation is only partially absorbed in the bloodstream.

However, your weight loss diet should contain foods that have enough magnesium and other minerals.

Low-calorie foods with a high content of nutrients, like legumes, green leafy vegetables, and seafood, can help you lose weight.

How Does Magnesium For Weight Loss Work?

You will not lose weight by getting enough magnesium citrate supplements alone.

However, magnesium citrate and other magnesium compounds may boost your weight loss efforts.

This laxative supplement cleanses your colon and induces regular bowel movements. The blend of citric acid and magnesium helps relieve occasional constipation. It helps with bloating and water retention.

Your body needs to get important minerals and vitamins in the required amounts. They are important for several body functions, including the production of hormones and enzymes that control metabolism.

Weight gain is not caused by excess calorie intake alone. Bodyweight management has much to do with the healthy and balanced production of hormones and enzymes.

How does magnesium citrate aid in weight loss?

  • Works as a laxative and reduces body weight by removing stools, roughage, and excess water from your body.
  • Increases energy production required for several functions of the body
  • Reduces insulin resistance, which leads to the burning of more body fat.
  • Helps to regulate blood sugar and insulin levels
  • Magnesium supplements help improve many menstrual issues affecting women by reducing bloating and excess water retention in the body.

According to Dr. Sherry Ross, an OB-GYN and women’s health expert at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, California, magnesium helps with water retention and bloating. He also says magnesium can help regulate blood sugar and insulin levels, which is beneficial for fat loss.

Magnesium Citrate for Constipation

The frequent occurrence of constipation is a serious health issue. It leads to several health problems, including weight gain.

Getting rid of constipation is necessary for weight loss and preventing abdominal diseases.

Magnesium citrate supplementation works well for relieving the symptoms of constipation in people of all ages.

It is an osmotic laxative that pulls water into the intestines to relax the bowels. The water retention in the stomach helps to bulk up and soften the stool. Softened stool easily passes out of the bowel.

Magnesium is gentle on the stomach and works up slowly. It does not cause an emergency bathroom trip but aids in smooth and comfortable bowel movements.

However, overdosing on magnesium citrate can cause a condition akin to diarrhea.

Magnesium citrate, a constipation supplement, is safe and healthy to use.

How Much Magnesium Intake Per Day?

Magnesium citrate is an over-the-counter (OTC) medication. Doctors recommend this supplement for the treatment of constipation and acid indigestion.

The amount of magnesium citrate and other supplements per day is as follows:

When it is used as a nutritional supplement, the daily dosage can be:

Over 30 years old:

  • Men: 420 mg/day
  • Women: 320 mg/day


  • Men: 400 mg/day
  • Women: 310 mg/day

The dosage of magnesium citrate used for constipation is:


  • 195-300 ml orally in a single daily dose with a glass of warm water


  • Children below 2 years: 30 to 75 mg per day
  • Children 2–6 years old: 60–90 ml or 90 mg per day
  • Children 6–12 years old: 90–120 ml or 120 mg per day
  • Children over 12 years old: 195-300 ml or 300 mg daily.

Foods High In Magnesium

The majority of people do not have a magnesium deficiency. However, a sizable percentage of people need this important mineral.

The best sources of magnesium in your diet are the following foods:

Sometimes, despite having a healthy diet, you can still need more magnesium. A few diseases can cause magnesium deficiencies, such as gastrointestinal diseases like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), celiac disease, and Crohn’s disease.

If you have a serious illness that affects your liver or kidneys, you may not be able to absorb or store as much magnesium.

Excessive intake of alcohol or caffeine regularly can prevent the body from absorbing this mineral.

Foods High In Magnesium

Side Effects of Magnesium Supplements

Supplements contain magnesium in a larger and more concentrated form than regular diets can. The effects of magnesium supplementation may vary for each person.

It can cause short-term side effects like:

Taking this supplement in high doses or regularly for a long period can cause more serious adverse effects, such as:

  • Low blood pressure
  • Muscle weakness
  • Respiratory problems
  • Drowsiness
  • Irregular heartbeats
  • Lack of appetite

Vitamin supplements are not regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The manufacturer of these products can add other harmful additives to the supplements that are not mentioned in the ingredient list.

Better Options for Weight Loss

The weight loss results begin only when you regularly follow a healthy diet and exercise program.

Include whole grains, vegetables, fruits, lean protein, and healthy fats in your diet. You should avoid calorie-rich foods, processed foods, and sweetened drinks.

Make sure the foods you have contain all the required nutrients and vitamins in an ample amount.

Expert weight loss guides recommend a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise daily. One of the best exercise options is to engage in moderate-intensity aerobic and cardio exercises. Make it a point to do whole-body strength training exercises twice a week.

Lastly, drinking at least 8 cups of water daily and sleeping 7 hours at night is important for shedding or maintaining a healthy weight.


A magnesium supplement like magnesium citrate or magnesium glycinate is not going to have a direct impact on weight loss.

But it may help boost several key body functions closely related to weight gain or loss.

According to a study published in the February 2009 edition of “The Journal of Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Analysis,” magnesium may increase free testosterone levels in your body. If so, testosterone can reduce body fat and increase muscle mass.

Magnesium also helps regulate blood sugar and insulin levels, which helps in better metabolic activities in the body. This is good for managing your body weight.

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