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A Toronto Functional Medicine Patient’s Guide to Magnesium Types


At our functional medicine clinic in Toronto, our integrative care practitioners commonly suggest magnesium supplements to patients. This is because Magnesium is significant for improving wellness, especially at the cellular level.

But what is magnesium? Why is it necessary for reaching optimal health? Magnesium is a mineral needed for 300+ enzymatic responses in the body.  Compared to other minerals, magnesium is ranked number four as one of the copious minerals in the human body.

Unfortunately, magnesium deficiencies can lead to issues with metabolism, nutrition, and chronic conditions. “Emerging evidence confirms that nearly two-thirds of the population in the western world is not achieving the recommended daily allowance for magnesium, a deficiency problem contributing to various health conditions,” stated an article published in the journal Scientifica. With that said, a magnesium deficiency is something to prevent or alleviate through functional medicine.

Preventing and Treating Magnesium Deficiencies in Toronto

There are different types of magnesium supplements available; some are available topically, others are suitable as oral supplements. How do you know which one to choose? Based on recommendations from our functional medicine practitioners, here are some magnesium types to note:

Magnesium Type
What It Is
How It Works
Magnesium citrate

A mineral preparation with magnesium in salt form and citric acid; important for many body systems, especially the muscles and nerves; May be used as a laxative. 

May be used to release occasional constipation by causing water to be retained within the stools; helps with constipation symptom management by increasing the number of bowel movements and softening the stool so that it’s easy to pass.

Magnesium chloride Contains salt and chlorine with magnesium; chlorine is included to create a salt-like form.

May be an effective oral supplement because it swiftly absorbs into the digestive tract.

Integrative functional medicine doctors may use this form via intravenous applications to support depression and anxiety.

Magnesium glycinate Contains two glycine molecules per one magnesium molecule; due to the added synergistic calming effect of glycine, it may aid sleep, tight muscles and help provide anxiety relief. Glycine is already calming, so combining this and magnesium may provide further calming effects and enhance absorption. Magnesium glycinate can be used daily, as it does not have a laxative effect.
Magnesium oxide Contains ions from magnesium and oxygen; a common supplement you can purchase in Toronto. May have a low effect at increasing magnesium in the blood because it has a low rate of bioavailability; used clinically as a laxative.
Magnesium sulfate

Also known as epsom salt, this is a combination of magnesium and sulfate; may help treat constipation 

or for helping with pain management, muscle cramps and migraines.

Mainly used in a transdermal manner; can be dissolved in bathwater; may also be administered orally or via medically-supervised IV therapy.
Magnesium glycinate Contains two glycine molecules per one magnesium molecule; due to the added synergistic calming effect of glycine, it may aid sleep, tight muscles and help provide anxiety relief. Glycine is already calming, so combining this and magnesium may provide further calming effects and enhance absorption. Magnesium glycinate can be used daily, as it does not have a laxative effect.
Magnesium L-threonate A synthetic mix of magnesium and threonic acid; may help support cognition (i.e. age-related memory loss and depression) Animal studies have shown it effective at intensifying brain cell magnesium levels. Research has also shown that magnesium L-threonate “effectively crosses the blood-brain barrier to inhibit calcium flux in brain neurons,” reported an article in Neuron.
Magnesium taurate According to animal research, both magnesium and taurine may help with lowering blood pressure.

Normalizes electrical activity across membranes in heart and brain; stabilizes nerve cells; may provide a calming effect on muscles and nerve conduction.

Take note: further research is needed to confirm other benefits and effects of magnesium taurate.

Dietary Sources of Magnesium

A naturopathic functional medicine doctor would likely explain that magnesium is available via dietary means. Try these magnesium-rich foods in your meals:

  • Hemp seeds
  • Whole wheat bread
  • Kidney beans
  • Avocado
  • Broccoli
  • Cooked halibut
  • Raw carrots
  • Raisins

Not sure which foods are proper for your personalized medicine plan? Then please make an appointment at our center for functional medicine.

Contact Our Toronto Private Practice

How can magnesium upgrade your quality of life? Let’s help you discover the advantages of this mineral today.

Our integrative medicine approach consists of evidence-based functional medicine practices for virtual and in-person appointments. Our integrated patient care may help with these conditions: chronic diseases, chronic pain, pain management, men’s and women’s hormone imbalances, and infertility.

Our integrative treatment plans may include naturopathy, traditional Chinese medicine, western medicine (allopathic), cold laser therapy, medically-supervised IV therapy, acupuncture, understanding lifestyle influences, and functional medicine testing.

How can you naturally attain optimal health? Send us a note to reach our Toronto functional medicine practitioner for health advice. 

Disclaimer: The information in this article is designed for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. This information should not be used to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses without consulting a health care provider. Consult with a health care practitioner before relying on any information in this article or on this website.


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