Do you know your magnesium needs? Did you know that sport significantly increases magnesium requirements? What are the effects of magnesium on health and physical performance?
In terms of magnesium, about 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 level of magnesium
Sport increases magnesium requirements because it accelerates 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 it is recommended that athletes 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);
- Reduce inflammation and fight acidosis (23);
- Reduced muscle damage and DNA damage, aids recovery (24-25-26);
- Optimization of testosterone secretion (27);
- Promotes glucose metabolism, blood sugar maintenance 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 tell us are 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 known to be the least assimilable work the best (37).
It makes more sense to use high, frequent doses of a well-absorbed 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, is it in your interest to also take magnesium citrate or will it duplicate?
If you have an excellent ability to assimilate 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 boost, ZMB is primarily a recovery supplement thanks to its pidolate content , a relaxing amino acid. The ZMB is mainly to be used in the evening, but not before training. 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 benefit of magnesium citrate is that it also provides citrate . This form is therefore ideal for a pre-workout intake. 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 do you know if your magnesium assimilation 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's a sign that you assimilate it rather well.
Similarly, migraines greatly reduced by regular use of magnesium are a sign of good assimilation of magnesium (39-40-41).
Indeed, abnormally low levels of magnesium are found in the brain and blood of migraine sufferers (42).
As with all supplements, it's still good to start low with magnesium citrate and work your way up slowly from day to day if all goes well .
In order to optimize absorption, it is particularly important to split the intake into small doses throughout the day , rather than taking one or two large doses per day. Likewise, magnesium citrate is best taken with meals, as protein and carbohydrates improve absorption .
Contrary to what has long been thought, 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 we take magnesium citrate cures or use it non-stop?
As the body does not store magnesium well and the elimination of this mineral is constant, it is necessary to ensure a continuous supply if one does not want to create a nutritional deficit.
What can be done is a modulation of the intakes according to your needs . These increase during periods of stress, intense training or when it is hot.
On the other hand, for people who suffer from migraines or who experience poor assimilation, we recommend a constant intake , relatively high throughout the year, without marking breaks.
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