The correct intake

Prevent and compensate for deficiencies

Magnesium should be taken on a daily basis to prevent magnesium deficiency. In cases of acute manifestations of deficiencies such as cramp in the calf muscles, a suitable dosage should be continued, even after the symptoms have disappeared, as the refilling  of magnesium stores takes some time.

The right time for magnesium intake

In general, you can take magnesium citrate at any time of day. In the case of night-time calf cramp, magnesium should be taken in the evenings just before going to bed. This is because the magnesium level in the blood always declines slightly at night and therefore cramps are triggered more easily. Sportsmen should take magnesium after sport if possible, since magnesium in high dosage can have a slight laxative effect. Glaucoma patients should take magnesium during the day.

Side effects – usually no reason to worry

At the start of treatment with magnesium, loose stools and possibly even diarrhoea might occur. This is harmless and will disappear in time. In such cases, the dosage should be reduced as a loosening of the stool is a sign that intestinal capacity for magnesium absorption has been reached. Excess magnesium is excreted in the urine when renal function is normal and overdoses are therefore practically impossible.

Overdosage of magnesium

Depending on the extent of the magnesium deficiency and the orders of the doctor, the dosage can range from 300 mg to more than 600 mg magnesium per day. If too high a dosage of magnesium is taken by accident, a distinct loosening of the stool can be the consequence. In such cases, the dosage should be reduced as a loosening of the stool is a sign that intestinal capacity for magnesium absorption has been reached. Excess magnesium is excreted in the urine when renal function is normal and overdoses are therefore practically impossible.

The right dosage is important for effectiveness.

When should you consult your physician?

Magnesium should only be taken after consultation with a physician in cases of severe renal impairment and slow heart rate (bradycardia). Some drugs, such as aminoglycoside antibiotics, cisplatin and cyclosporin A, result in accelerated renal magnesium excretion, which will potentially require adjustment of the dosage. In addition to high-dose calcium, iron, fluoride and tetracycline antibiotics also affect intestinal magnesium absorption. As magnesium and the above-mentioned medicinal products might mutually influence each other’s absorption, a time interval of 2 to 3 hours should generally be respected between doses if possible.