Magnesium and its benefits to the human body
Magnesium is a naturally occurring mineral which is crucial for promoting healthy function of the nervous system and brain.
It is also called “master mineral” Why? well for good reason, there are numerous documented benefits to
- Magnesium possesses anti-anxiety, anti-stress, anti-depressive and neuroprotective properties.
- Magnesium plays a significant role in neurological and brain-related diseases such as bipolar disorder, ADHD, addictions, schizophrenia, seizures, acute brain injury, Alzheimer’s disease & P
Magnesium Supplements: Benefits and issues.
Magnesium deficiency in the human body can cause a plethora of undesired effects, which is why most of us can benefit from the use of supplemental magnesium not just for nootropic benefits but overall health & wellbeing.
However there are a wide variety of different forms of magnesium on the market how do we know which one is the best? well lets take a look;
Firstly, there are chelated forms of magnesium, which put simply, means, the magnesium molecule is bonded to another molecule. Chelation helps in the better absorption, stability and bioavailability of the magnesium supplement.
Bioavailability is an important factor in gaining the benefits of magnesium. Remember, magnesium has been proven to bring in a number of benefits, such as:
- Increase resilience to stress
- Improve focus and concentration
- Elevated mood
- Increased energy levels
- Improve sleep quality
- Variety of conditions not related to brain health, like asthma, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, cramps and heart diseases.
However, there has always been controversy over the use of magnesium supplements when it comes to mental and cognitive performance. This is because most forms of magnesium do not pass through the blood-brain barrier easily.
To solve this problem, a newly synthesized form of magnesium has been created. It is called Magnesium L-Threonate.
Magnesium L-Threonate: How does it work?
Magnesium L-Threonate a synthesized form of magnesium has been shown to improve cognitive performance.
It is a compound where magnesium molecule is bound to L-T
This supplement was developed by the joint efforts of neuroscientists from Tsinghua University in Beijing and Massachusetts Institute of Technology
It was originally designed and created to cross the brain’s protective layer, known as the blood-brain barrier.
Is Magnesium L-Threonate “natural”?
A common question that comes up is this form of Magnesium “natural”. There should be no concern regarding if the supplement is natural or not. If our goal is to
For example, the magnesium naturally found in Epsom salts is known to be a rough laxative that is difficult to absorb. If improving the cognitive function is your goal then this is the worst form of magnesium to take.
There are a number of widely used magnesium supplements such as magnesium glycinate and magnesium citrate. These were also developed through research laboratory work & are common in some dietary supplements.
Why is Magnesium L-Threonate a better supplement?
The concentration of magnesium is found to be highest in the brain, more so than in the blood.
Magnesium is highly missing from our modern diet. Only 32% of the population get the Recommended Daily Dose (RDA) of magnesium in the United States.
This makes it very important for us to consume magnesium.
But, unfortunately, very little amount of magnesium available in most foods, as well as supplements that can cross the blood-brain barrier effectivel.
This is where Magnesium L-Threonate comes in. This form of magnesium has been shown to increase the level of magnesium in the brain substantially.
This compound is also found to increase neuroplasticity. Neuroplasticity relates to the ability of the brain to grow and change. It is fundamental to learning and memory recall.
Furthermore, a protein called Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) which is known to increase brain cell formation which also plays a fundamental role in memory has been shown to be increased when supplementing with Magnesium L Theronate.
Clinical trials of Magnesium L Threonate
Magnesium L Threonate is a comparatively new supplement (since 2010), and has not been used for any medicinal and traditional purpose in the past.
Apart from a few dozen studies, there has been just one clinical trial (study on humans) for this supplement.
Clinical trials were done on older adults (between 50-70 years) who reported problems with sleep, anxiety, memory and concentration.
In this trial, Magnesium L Threonate was administered for 12 weeks.
The evaluation was done based on four characteristics of cognitive abilities- episodic memory, level of attention, their working memory and executive function.
The results obtained showed:
- Increased magnesium level in brain cells.
- Better performance in all cognitive areas by all participants.
- Significant reduction in their brain age (reversed their biological brain age back to the chronological age).
- It did not have any effect on anxiety, sleep or mood.
Study of Magnesium l-threonate on Animals
- May help in anxiety disorders
Magnesium being a relaxant increases the level of GABA, a calming neurotransmitter. It also reduces the release of stress hormones.
Stress chemicals are stopped from entering the brain due to this supplement.
It can be specifically used in dealing with various anxiety disorders such as post-traumatic disorder and phobias. However, more studies on humans are needed.
- Potential treatment for dementia and Alzheimer’s disease
Research on human populations shows that high levels of magnesium can lead to low risks to different types of dementia.
Studies have found that Magnesium L Threonate can decline memory loss and mental illness in old age rats.
- Aids in learning and memory
Rats were found to be smarter after being administered the compound.
They showed improvements in their long-term and short-term memory and work.
Magnesium L Threonate dosage
RDA for magnesium is:
- Men- 420 mg
- Women- 320 mg
For Magnesium L Threonate, there isn’t any established RDA but, studies suggest 1200-2000 mg per day produced an ideal response.
Two grams of Magnesium L Threonate gives you around one-third of your requirement (daily basis).
Magnesium L Threonate however, cannot overcome the overall magnesium deficiency in your body since that amount of elemental magnesium in it is low.
Better options would be magnesium glycinate or magnesium citrate.
However, you can take more than one type/form of magnesium.
Magnesium L Threonate: Side-effects
- A headache, increase of blood flow in head, drowsiness. It usually lasts for a week and is temporary.
- Magnesium supplements commonly give digestive upset, but this is not the case with Magnesium L T
- A drug’s effectiveness can be interfered due to magnesium and should not be consumed by people with kidney diseases.
Magnesium l-threonate was developed keeping in mind the inability of magnesium supplements to cross the brain’s protective filter.
It shows promising results with regards to reducing stress, anxiety, sleep disorder, Alzheimer’s disease and others.
Most people have suboptimal levels of magnesium and hence using Magnesium L-Threonate is a good option to increase one’s cognitive performance.