Do you often experience muscle soreness and stiffness after exercising? If so, you’re not alone. Many people struggle with post-workout muscle recovery, which can make it difficult to stick to a consistent exercise routine. Fortunately, there are natural solutions that can help speed up muscle recovery and reduce soreness. In this article, we’ll explore one such solution: magnesium.
Magnesium is an essential mineral that plays a crucial role in muscle function and recovery. We’ll discuss the benefits of magnesium for muscle recovery and how you can incorporate it into your diet and supplement routine to support your post-workout recovery.
What is magnesium?
Magnesium is a mineral that is present in the human body and is necessary for a wide variety of bodily functions. It’s available in foods like legumes, nuts, and seeds, as well as fortified cereals and some dairy products.
Magnesium may be used for energy production, the development of bone, nerve impulse conduction, muscle contraction, and normal heart rhythm.1 Since it’s an important mineral in the body, it’s crucial that we get enough magnesium to not only survive, but thrive.
Magnesium is a mineral that is found naturally in many foods, including leafy green vegetables, nuts, seeds, and whole grains. It is also available in various supplement forms, of which magnesium glycinate or magnesium citrate are well absorbed and tolerated.
Magnesium is involved in over 300 biochemical reactions in the body, including muscle and nerve function, protein synthesis, and energy production.
How can magnesium help with muscle recovery?
One of the primary benefits of magnesium for muscle recovery is its ability to reduce inflammation. Inflammation is a natural response to exercise-induced muscle damage, but excessive inflammation can slow down the recovery process and increase muscle soreness.
Magnesium has been shown to reduce inflammation and oxidative stress, which can help speed up muscle recovery.2
In addition to its anti-inflammatory properties, magnesium also plays a role in muscle relaxation. Muscle relaxation is essential for muscle recovery, as it allows the muscles to rest and repair. Magnesium helps regulate calcium levels in the body, which can promote muscle relaxation and reduce muscle spasms and cramps.3
Do I need to take a magnesium supplement to help with muscle repair?
If you’re getting enough magnesium from your diet, you may not need to take a magnesium supplement to support your muscle repair.1 Some of the best dietary sources of magnesium include spinach, almonds, black beans, and avocado. You can also consider taking a magnesium supplement, either in tablet or powder form.
However, many people do not consume enough magnesium in their diets, and may benefit from supplementation. Factors such as age, gender, and physical activity levels can all affect your magnesium needs.3 If you are an athlete, older adult, or have certain health conditions, you may need more magnesium than the average person.4
Even those who struggle with things like post-exercise muscle cramping and twitches, insomnia, constipation, or mental health complaints, it can be a great help. In fact, athletes may need magnesium supplements for better performance and injury prevention.
Studies have shown that reducing magnesium in athletes negatively affects their performance, while increasing it results in better oxygen uptake, increased endurance, and better overall performance.5
Since magnesium is an important anti-inflammatory, assisting with easier muscle contraction and relaxation, it helps with reducing the build-up of lactic acid in muscles which is what causes muscle cramps.6
When choosing a magnesium supplement, it’s important to look for one that is easily absorbed by the body. Magnesium citrate is a good option, as it is well-absorbed and has a high bioavailability.
Talk to your healthcare provider or a qualified naturopath to determine if you should consider taking a magnesium supplement to support your muscle repair and recovery. They can help you determine the right dosage and form of magnesium for your individual needs.
Should I supplement with magnesium if I’m not deficient?
There is some evidence to suggest that taking magnesium supplements may have benefits even for people who are not deficient in this mineral. For example, some studies have found that magnesium supplementation can improve sleep quality7, reduce stress and anxiety8, and improve cognitive function.9
Magnesium may also have cardiovascular benefits, such as reducing blood pressure and improving heart function.10 Additionally, taking too much magnesium can cause side effects like diarrhoea, nausea, and stomach cramps. It’s always a good idea to speak with a qualified healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen.
That being said, magnesium is an essential mineral that plays a role in many important bodily functions. It’s found in a variety of foods, including leafy greens, nuts and seeds, whole grains, and legumes, and it’s generally safe to consume in moderate amounts throughout the diet.
If you’re concerned about your magnesium intake or experiencing symptoms of magnesium deficiency, it’s best to speak with a qualified healthcare provider to determine the best course of action.
Which types of magnesium are helpful for what?
The Terranova Magnesium Complex, for example, contains magnesium bisglycinate chelate, a form of elemental magnesium that is supported with magnesium oxide making it far gentler on the digestive system and far more bioavailable.
Bisglycinate chelate magnesium is a highly bioavailable form of magnesium that is often recommended by healthcare practitioners for its many benefits.11
The chelation process allows for better absorption of magnesium in the body, which can lead to greater effectiveness and fewer gastrointestinal side effects.12
Bisglycinate chelate magnesium has been shown to support muscle and nerve function13, reduce muscle cramps and spasms14, and improve sleep quality.15 It can also help support cardiovascular health16, bone health17, and a healthy immune system.18
Additionally, bisglycinate chelate magnesium is often preferred by individuals with digestive issues, as it is gentle on the stomach and less likely to cause diarrhea or other gastrointestinal discomfort.19
Coyne Biomax® Magnesium Complex contains both magnesium citrate (known to be more readily absorbed than some other forms of magnesium) and liposomal magnesium — a compound including tiny phospholipid particles — which is known to provide an extended-release timeframe.
Liposomal magnesium also remains unaffected by the presence of other nutrients, as the phospholipids help to transport the magnesium straight to the bloodstream where it is more easily absorbed and used by the body.
Biomax® Magnesium Complex also contains prebiotic fibre to optimize gut health while the liposomal delivery mechanism is enriched with phosphatidylcholine for brain and liver support.
Coyne Biomax® Magnesium Complex is easy to use and the Optimal Delivery formulation is available in Unflavoured or Berry Flavour varieties.
What’s the bottom line when it comes to magnesium?
Magnesium is a powerful mineral that can support muscle recovery through its anti-inflammatory and muscle relaxation properties. By incorporating magnesium-rich foods into your diet and taking a high-quality magnesium supplement, you can help speed up your muscle recovery and reduce muscle soreness.
Health supplements such as Terranova Magnesium Complex and Coyne Biomax® Magnesium Complex may provide benefits for those who do not get the required amount through their diet and those who require additional assistance for muscle recovery and good health.
|1||National Institute of Health. Magnesium: Fact Sheet for Health Professionals. 2022. Available from: Source|
|2||Córdova A, et al. Effects of magnesium supplementation on muscle damage from physical exercise: a systematic review. Nutrients. 2018;10(7):946.|
|3||Volpe SL. Magnesium and the Athlete. Curr Sports Med Rep. 2015;14(4):279-83.|
|4||Nielsen FH, Lukaski HC. Update on the relationship between magnesium and exercise. Magnes Res. 2006;19(3):180-9.|
|5||Hamilton, A. Magnesium – is it more important for athletes than we thought? Sports Performance Bulletin. 2022. Available from: Source|
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|10||Del Gobbo LC, Imamura F, Wu JH, de Oliveira Otto MC, Chiuve SE, Mozaffarian D. Circulating and dietary magnesium and risk of cardiovascular disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis of prospective studies. Am J Clin Nutr. 2013;98(1):160-173. doi:10.3945/ajcn.112.053132|
|11||Magnesium Bisglycinate Chelate. Integrative Therapeutics. Accessed on March 27, 2023. Available from: Source|
|12||Coudray C, Rambeau M, Feillet-Coudray C, et al. Study of magnesium bioavailability from ten organic and inorganic Mg salts in Mg-depleted rats using a stable isotope approach. Magnes Res. 2005;18(4):215-23.|
|13||Boyle N, Lawton C, Dye L. The effects of magnesium supplementation on subjective anxiety and stress-a systematic review. Nutrients. 2017;9(5):429.|
|14||Abbasi B, Kimiagar M, Sadeghniiat K, Shirazi MM, Hedayati M, Rashidkhani B. The effect of magnesium supplementation on primary insomnia in elderly: A double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial. J Res Med Sci. 2012;17(12):1161-1169.|
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|18||Rosanoff A, Weaver CM, Rude RK. Suboptimal magnesium status in the United States: are the health consequences underestimated? Nutr Rev. 2012;70(3):153-64.|
|19||Schwalfenberg GK, Genuis SJ. The Importance of Magnesium in Clinical Healthcare|