Sports Nutrition Experts since 1993

All you need to know about Nutrimuscle magnesium citrate

  • Sports nutrition

Do you know your magnesium needs? Did you know that sport significantly increases the need for magnesium? What are the effects of magnesium on health and physical performance?

In terms of magnesium, around 70% of French people do not reach the minimum health intake (1-2). These same deficits are found in many athletes, including professionals (3).

Effects of regular and intense sports practice on the magnesium level

Sport increases the need for magnesium because it speeds up the use and elimination of this mineral in sweat and urine. (4-5-6-7-8-9).

This phenomenon of increased needs is particularly true in strength sports (10-11). It is for these reasons that athletes are recommended to increase their magnesium intake by 10 to 20% compared to the basic recommendations (12).

Effects of Magnesium on Health and Physical Performance

The effects of magnesium are numerous:

  • Gain muscle and strength (13-14-15-16);
  • Performance increase (17-18-19-20-21);
  • Role in muscle anabolism (22);
  • Reduces inflammation and fights acidosis (23);
  • Reduced muscle damage and DNA damage, facilitates recovery (24-25-26);
  • Optimization of testosterone secretion (27);
  • Promotes glucose metabolism, maintenance of blood sugar and anti-fatigue (28-29);
  • Fight against cardiovascular diseases and certain cancers (30-31-32-33-34);
  • Inhibits vascular calcification (promoted by physical activity) (35);
  • Fight against kidney stones;
  • Improves some symptoms of fibromyalgia (36).

What is the best form of magnesium?

The forms that sellers tout to us as being the best absorbed are also the most expensive. These forms do not always work as well in practice as they do in theory. Sometimes the forms deemed to be the least assimilable work the best (37).

It makes more sense to use high and frequent doses of a well-absorbable and less expensive form, such as magnesium citrate (the chemical form of magnesium is much less important than previously thought, the most important factor being the total dosage (38)).

Differences between ZMB and Magnesium Citrate?

If you are already taking ZMB, are you also better off taking magnesium citrate or will it duplicate?

If you benefit from an excellent absorption capacity of magnesium, adding magnesium citrate is not necessarily useful. On the other hand, if your assimilation capacities are not optimal, it is wise to add magnesium citrate in order to increase your magnesium intake.

More than a magnesium intake, ZMB is above all a recovery supplement thanks to its content in pidolate, a relaxing amino acid. The ZMB is best used in the evening, but not before a workout. Magnesium citrate can be taken throughout the day in order to split the intake to optimize its absorption (see below).

Two supplements for the price of one

A big advantage of magnesium citrate is that it also provides citrate. This shape is therefore ideal for a pre-workout grip. Indeed, the action of citrate consists in raising the athlete's pH which is lowered due to the acid that the muscles generate during an effort.

How to know if its absorption of magnesium is good or not?

The laxative action of magnesium citrate comes mainly from the magnesium more than from the citrate part. So, if you are very sensitive to the laxative action of magnesium, it is a sign that you are absorbing it rather well.

Likewise, migraines greatly reduced by regular use of magnesium represent a sign of good absorption of magnesium (39-40-41).

This is because abnormally low levels of magnesium are found in the brain and blood of people with migraine (42).

As with all supplements, it is still a good idea to start low with magnesium citrate and work your way up slowly day by day if all goes well.

In order to optimize absorption, it is especially important to split intakes into smaller doses throughout the day, rather than taking one or two large doses per day. Likewise, it is better to take magnesium citrate with meals, as proteins and carbohydrates improve its assimilation.

Contrary to popular belief, unless you take "megadoses", calcium does not reduce the absorption of magnesium. Moreover, casein which contains calcium promotes the assimilation of magnesium.

You can also enrich your water with magnesium citrate, which you can drink in small sips throughout the day.

Should you take magnesium citrate or use it non-stop?

As the body stores magnesium poorly and the elimination of this mineral is constant, it is necessary to ensure a continual supply if one does not want to create a nutritional deficit.

What can be done is a modulation of the intake according to your needs. These increase during times of stress, intense training or when the weather is hot.

On the other hand, for people who suffer from migraines or who know a bad assimilation, we recommend a constant contribution, relatively high throughout the year, without marking of pose.

To the product sheet, for more details on magnesium citrate

Scientific references

(1) Touvier M. Vitamin and mineral inadequacy in the French population: estimation and application for the optimization of food fortification. Int J Vitam Nutr Res. 2006 Nov;76(6):343-51.

(2) Dufour A. Prevalence of inadequate nutrient intake and risk of exceeding upper levels in the French population Ann Nutr Metab 2011;58(suppl 3):p 397

(3) Raizel R. Pre-season dietary intake of professional soccer players. Nutr Health. 2017 Dec;23(4):215-222.

(4) Córdova Martínez A. Effect of magnesium supplementation on muscular damage markers in basketball players during a full season. Magnes Res. 2017 May 1;30(2):61-70.

(5) Setaro L. Magnesium status and the physical performance of volleyball players: effects of magnesium supplementation. J Sports Sci. 2014;32(5):438-45.

(6) Zhang Y. Can Magnesium Enhance Exercise Performance? Nutrients. 2017 Aug 28;9(9).

(7) Terink R. Decrease in Ionized and Total Magnesium Blood Concentrations in Endurance Athletes Following an Exercise Bout Restores within Hours-Potential Consequences for Monitoring and Supplementation. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2017 Jun;27(3):264-270.

(8) Bohl CH. Magnesium and Exercise. Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition Volume 42, 2002 - Issue 6

(9) Matias CN. Magnesium and strength in elite judo athletes according to intracellular water changes. Magnes Res. 2010 Sep;23(3):138-41.

(10) Uzun A. The acute effect of maximal strength, power endurance and interval run training on levels of some elements in elite basketball players. Life Sci J. 2013;10:2697–2701.

(11) Raja Serairi Beji. Evaluation de l’état nutritionnel et de la composition corporelle chez un groupe de jeunes haltérophiles Tunisiens. La tunisie Medicale - 2016 ; Vol 94 ( n°02 ) : 112-117

(12) Laires MJ. Magnesium status and exercise performance in athletes. Trace Elem. Electroly 2014, 31, 13–20.

(13) Welch AA. Dietary Magnesium Is Positively Associated With Skeletal Muscle Power and Indices of Muscle Mass and May Attenuate the Association Between Circulating C-Reactive Protein and Muscle Mass in Women. J Bone Miner Res. 2016 Feb;31(2):317-25.

(14) Welch AA. Dietary Magnesium May Be Protective for Aging of Bone and Skeletal Muscle in Middle and Younger Older Age Men and Women: Cross-Sectional Findings from the UK Biobank Cohort. Nutrients. 2017 Oct 30;9(11). pii: E1189.

(15) Hayhoe RPG. Cross-sectional associations of dietary and circulating magnesium with skeletal muscle mass in the EPIC-Norfolk cohort. Clin Nutr. 2018 Jan 30. pii: S0261-5614(18)30015-3.

(16) Richard PG. Cross-sectional associations of dietary and circulating magnesium with skeletal muscle mass in the EPIC-Norfolk cohort. Clin Nutr. February 2019Volume 38, Issue 1, Pages 317–323

(17) Setaro L. Magnesium status and the physical performance of volleyball players: effects of magnesium supplementation. J Sports Sci. 2014;32(5):438-45.

(18) Setaro L. Effect of Magnesium Supplementation in Isokinetic Knee-Flexion in Elite Volleyball Players. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise. 40(5):S341, May 2008.

(19) Santos DA. Magnesium intake is associated with strength performance in elite basketball, handball and volleyball players. Magnes Res. 2011 Dec;24(4):215-9.

(20) Golf SW. On the significance of magnesium in extreme physical stress. Cardiovasc Drugs Ther. 1998;12(2):197–202.

(21) Cinar V. The effect of magnesium supplementation on lactate levels of sportsmen and sedanter. Acta Physiol Hung. 2006 Jun;93(2-3):137-44.

(22) Dørup I. Effects of magnesium and zinc deficiencies on growth and protein synthesis in skeletal muscle and the heart. Br J Nutr. 1991 Nov;66(3):493-504.

(23) Welch AA. A higher alkaline dietary load is associated with greater indexes of skeletal muscle mass in women. Osteoporos Int. 2013 Jun;24(6):1899-908.

(24) Córdova Martínez A. Effect of magnesium supplementation on muscular damage markers in basketball players during a full season. Magnes Res. 2017 May 1;30(2):61-70.

(25) Kass LS. The effect of acute vs chronic magnesium supplementation on exercise and recovery on resistance exercise, blood pressure and total peripheral resistance on normotensive adults. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2015 Apr 24;12:19.

(26) Petrović J. Magnesium Supplementation Diminishes Peripheral Blood Lymphocyte DNA Oxidative Damage in Athletes and Sedentary Young Man. Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2016;2016:2019643.

(27) Cinar V. Effects of magnesium supplementation on testosterone levels of athletes and sedentary subjects at rest and after exhaustion. Biol Trace Elem Res. 2011 Apr;140(1):18-23.

(28) Smith Richard W. High Magnesium Intake Effects On Female Athlete'S Metabolism After High Intensity Exercise. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: May 2010 - Volume 42 - Issue 5 - p 319

(29) Yijia Z. Can Magnesium Enhance Exercise Performance? Nutrients 2017, 9(9), 946;

(30) Zhang X. Serum magnesium concentrations and all-cause, cardiovascular, and cancer mortality among U.S. adults: Results from the NHANES I Epidemiologic Follow-up Study. Clin Nutr. 2018 Oct;37(5):1541-1549.

(31) Fang X. Dietary magnesium intake and the risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and all-cause mortality: a dose-response meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies. BMC Med. 2016 Dec 8;14(1):210.

(32) Fang X. Dose-response relationship between dietary magnesium intake and cardiovascular mortality: A systematic review and dose-based meta-regression analysis of prospective studies. J Trace Elem Med Biol. 2016 Dec;38:64-73.

(33) Kieboom BC. Serum Magnesium and the Risk of Death From Coronary Heart Disease and Sudden Cardiac Death. J Am Heart Assoc. 2016 Jan 22;5(1). pii: e002707.

(34) Guasch-Ferré M. Dietary magnesium intake is inversely associated with mortality in adults at high cardiovascular disease risk. J Nutr. 2014 Jan;144(1):55-60.

(35) Hénaut L. Magnesium as a Calcification Inhibitor. Adv Chronic Kidney Dis. 2018 May;25(3):281-290.

(36) Bagis, S., Karabiber, M., As, İ., Tamer, L., Erdogan, C., & Atalay, A. (2012). Is magnesium citrate treatment effective on pain, clinical parameters and functional status in patients with fibromyalgia?. Rheumatology International, 33(1), 167-172. doi: 10.1007/s00296-011-2334-8

(37) Ross JR. A case of hypomagnesaemia due to malabsorption, unresponsive to oral administration of magnesium glycerophosphate, but responsive to oral magnesium oxide supplementation. Gut. 2001 Jun;48(6):857-8.

(38) Schuchardt JP. Intestinal Absorption and Factors Influencing Bioavailability of Magnesium-An Update. Curr Nutr Food Sci. 2017 Nov;13(4):260-278.

(39) Assarzadegan F. Serum concentration of magnesium as an independent risk factor in migraine attacks: a matched case-control study and review of the literature. Int Clin Psychopharmacol. 2016 Sep;31(5):287-92.

(40) Chiu HY. Effects of intravenous and oral magnesium on reducing migraine: A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Pain Phys. 2016;19:E97–E112.

(41) Von Luckner A. Magnesium in migraine prophylaxis—Is there an evidence-based rationale? A systematic review. Headache J. Head Face Pain. 2018;58:199–209.

(42) Kirkland A. The Role of Magnesium in Neurological Disorders. Nutrients. 2018 Jun 6;10(6). pii: E730.


Written on 1/10/2022 by Nutrimuscle Conseil
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