Magnesium for constipation

Magnesium is one of the most essential minerals in our bodies. It can be found in foods such as leafy greens, beans, pulses, nuts, seeds, and cocoa and has many benefits for our muscles, heart, mood, athletic performance, sleep, and blood sugar levels.1 

No wonder it is known as the ’'life-saving mineral’'.

In this article, we will discuss the role magnesium plays in our bodies, its benefits, and whether it is a useful mineral to take. 

Benefits of Magnesium

Magnesium is a key mineral that helps maintain healthy muscles, nerves, bones, and blood sugar levels. Being deficient in it can increase the risk of chronic health problems such as heart attack, stroke, diabetes and osteoporosis.2 

This mineral helps with bowel movements by relaxing the muscles in the intestinal wall. It is also essential for many bodily functions, such as muscle and nerve function, blood sugar regulation, and bone health.

Magnesium is also important for our gut health and can help treat constipation due to its effect on muscle contraction and bowel stimulation.3 

When choosing the best magnesium supplement for constipation, there are a few aspects to keep in mind. Magnesium citrate and magnesium oxide are two common forms of this mineral that are most well-absorbed by the body. 

Let's take a closer look.

Which magnesium is best for constipation?

There are different types of magnesium supplements. Ones that help relieve constipation include magnesium sulfate, magnesium citrate and magnesium hydroxide (milk of magnesia).

Magnesium oxide has often been used as a natural alternative to prescribed laxatives.

Magnesium acts by pulling water into the intestines. This water mixes with the dry stool, making it easier to pass. Similar to caffeine, it also helps to stimulate muscle contractions within the bowel, allowing us to poop!

Medications that work in this way are called osmotic laxatives. When used correctly, many patients find that magnesium citrate is an effective solution to occasional constipation and is most commonly used.3

How fast does magnesium work for constipation?

The effectiveness of magnesium supplements will vary with person and dosage. However,  according to research, you should normally see the effects of most magnesium supplements within 30 minutes to 6 hours. Taking a higher dosage will speed up transit time.1

How Should I Take Magnesium?

The best way to take magnesium is through supplementation, or you could consider increasing magnesium-rich foods. 

You can get magnesium supplements from most health stores or speak to your GP about the best options and dosage for you.

Who should not take magnesium?

Though magnesium supplements are generally considered safe, it's always advised to consult a healthcare professional before taking them, especially for those with a medical condition. 

Magnesium supplements may be unsuitable for people who take certain diuretics, heart medications, or antibiotics.1 Since this mineral is discharged by the kidneys, people with kidney or heart disease should also avoid them.1 

We advise you to check with your GP or healthcare professional before taking magnesium supplements. 

Take Home Message

In conclusion, magnesium may help with constipation and offer a natural alternative to prescribed medication.

Alongside magnesium, consuming a high-fibre diet, regular exercise, staying hydrated, and consuming coffee are other things that we can do to help maintain bowel regularity. 

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References → 1

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