Magnesium For Muscle Pain: What Does Science Say and Which Supplement to Take?
Persistent or severe muscle pain is a common but often overlooked sign of magnesium deficiency. Learn how a supplement can help plus how to find the right one.
Magnesium (Mg) deficiency manifests in different ways. Among them, long-term muscle pain is the most apparent sign signaling a deficiency. Sadly, many other health issues can cause muscle soreness, and there is a high chance that the condition may be misdiagnosed.
Nearly half of all Americans consume a magnesium-deficient diet, reports a 2018 study published in The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association.1
Your body needs magnesium – the 4th most abundant mineral in the body – to regulate blood pressure and blood glucose levels. Besides, it is vital for optimal nerve and muscle function and vitamin D metabolism.
According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH),2
- Men (19-51+ years) need 400-420 mg daily.
- Women (19-51+ years) need 310-320 mg daily.
- Pregnant women need 360-400 mg daily.
Older people and those with digestive disorders, diabetes, and heavy alcohol use are more likely to be deficient.
Why Try A Magnesium Supplement For Muscle Pain and Soreness?
If you are diagnosed with Mg deficiency and have persistent muscle pain, you should definitely try a supplement. Using a supplement can also have additional health benefits, such as:
- Improved exercise performance
- Optimal blood sugar and pressure control
- Improved mood
- Fewer menstruation-associated symptoms
- Reduced inflammation
Moreover, magnesium is safe, well-tolerated, and unlikely to cause severe side effects. A dose of 350 mg per day causes no digestive side effects in almost all individuals.3
How Can Magnesium Help Reduce Muscle Pain?
Muscle pain can result from many causes, such as stress, vitamin D and mineral deficiencies, and too much physical activity. Fortunately, magnesium can help alleviate muscle soreness due to any of these causes.
Supplementation may help reduce stress
The link between Mg level in the body and stress is bidirectional.4 Stress can cause magnesium loss, and its deficiency can make you prone to anxiety.
In 2018, a team of researchers from the UK, France, and Germany found that Mg supplementation effectively reduced stress in healthy adults.5 Moreover, the researchers concluded that adding vitamin B6 might provide more significant stress relief in severe cases.
Magnesium is essential for Vitamin D metabolism
Several studies have shown that vitamin D deficiency is closely related to increased stress, anxiety, and mood issues.6 One way to prevent it from happening is to take enough magnesium.
A supplement can correct both low magnesium and vitamin D levels, significantly reducing stress and associated muscle pain.
Supplementation can help maintain muscle integrity
Muscle damage occurs spontaneously with increasing age and following intense physical activity. A supplement helps reduce tissue damage and accelerate muscle recovery in two ways.7
First, it makes glucose readily available to the muscles during exercise. Second, it increases the removal of lactate – the primary cause of fatigue while exercising.
How to Choose the Best Magnesium Supplement for Muscle Pain?
If you are looking to purchase a supplement for you or your loved ones, consider the following tips.
- Look for a product with a highly absorbable form of magnesium. Remember, having digestive problems can significantly reduce the absorption and effectiveness of this unique mineral. Choosing the right supplement ensures an optimal amount of the mineral reaches your bloodstream and cells.
- Opt for a product with no gluten, dairy, and soy. Food allergies are common, and some may cause dangerous effects. Thus, it is best to stick to products that contain no potential allergens.
- Lastly, it is best to combine a healthy diet with supplements for sustained benefits. Undoubtedly, supplements are a great way to restore normal nutrient levels. Besides, they are essential for rapidly correcting your deficiency. That said, experts don’t recommend the long-term use of any supplement. So, you will need to eat a balanced diet for long-term management of deficiencies.
If you are interested in supplementing Magnesium, try Magnesium Complete; it contains a highly absorbable magnesium lysinate glycinate chelate and the patented di-magnesium malate from Albion Laboratories, Inc.
- American Osteopathic Association. “Low magnesium levels make vitamin D ineffective: Up to 50 percent of US population is magnesium deficient.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 February 2018.
- National Institutes of Health, Magnesium Fact Sheet for Health Professionals, https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Magnesium-HealthProfessional/.
- Schwalfenberg, Gerry K, and Stephen J Genuis. “The Importance of Magnesium in Clinical Healthcare.” Scientifica vol. 2017 (2017): 4179326. doi:10.1155/2017/4179326.
- Pickering, Gisèle et al. “Magnesium Status and Stress: The Vicious Circle Concept Revisited.” Nutrients vol. 12,12 3672. 28 Nov. 2020, doi:10.3390/nu12123672.
- Pouteau, Etienne et al. “Superiority of magnesium and vitamin B6 over magnesium alone on severe stress in healthy adults with low magnesemia: A randomized, single-blind clinical trial.” PloS one vol. 13,12 e0208454. 18 Dec. 2018, doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0208454.
- Kelley, L et al. “Vitamin D deficiency, behavioral atypicality, anxiety and depression in children with chromosome 22q11.2 deletion syndrome.” Journal of developmental origins of health and disease vol. 7,6 (2016): 616-625. doi:10.1017/S2040174416000428.
- Chen, Hsuan-Ying et al. “Magnesium enhances exercise performance via increasing glucose availability in the blood, muscle, and brain during exercise.” PloS one vol. 9,1 e85486. 20 Jan. 2014, doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0085486.