Magnesium is a key mineral, a micronutrient, that plays a significant role across several areas of your overall health, fitness, and healthy functioning.
It can aid your heart, your mood, your blood sugar levels, your athleticism, and your bone health, to name just a few benefits. It’s also widely available from dietary sources like nuts, seeds, leafy greens, and beans.
However, many of us don’t get enough of it. This can lead to a range of health complications and may diminish your overall wellbeing.
Therefore, it can crucial to healthy and optimal living for many of us to take magnesium supplements. Today we will be taking a look at the best magnesium supplements the UK has to offer – and asking if indeed there is a difference between them!
The Best Magnesium Supplement?
nothing BUT nutrition is a real magnesium gem.
While some cheaper products have just 4% bioavailability, nothing BUT boasts 89%+, with its whopping 360mg of easily absorbed elemental magnesium, sourced from the Dead Sea. It’s an all-natural, high-quality product that’s easy on the digestive system.
Its capsules are easy to swallow, completely vegan and vegetarian friendly, with no GMOs or artificial ingredients. What’s not to love? It’s a little pricier, but easily justified for what it offers – some serious health benefits.
All these supplements in the list are brilliant, with some varying price points – but as magnesium supplements go, our research and trials say nothing BUT is the best of the bunch here.
Our Top Magnesium Supplements
There are plenty of ways to supplement your magnesium intake. We can also get a lot of it from our diet alone. We will be giving you all the information you need on magnesium beneath our best magnesium supplement picks – but before that – let’s take a look at which brands made our shortlist.
Incite Nutrition Magnesium Citrate
Our first offering comes from Incite Nutrition. Their magnesium capsules are medium to high strength and very good quality.
You just need a single dose, which isn’t uncommon with this kind of supplement, though many supplements will have you taking multiple doses throughout the day. The capsules are completely vegan, as they should be (but not something that is always a given), and give you 650mg of magnesium citrate that provides 200mg of elemental magnesium.
This is a very good amount. It comes in under the RDA for most people, whilst still making up a good chunk of it. As their name suggests, magnesium supplements are supplements – they are designed to supplement a good diet, not replace one. Combine these with a few helpings of leafy greens, nuts and dairy, and you’ll have a perfect, healthy magnesium intake.
Each capsule pack comes with an impressive six-month supply, showing remarkable value for money – though that’s not rare on this list, as I always like to find economical health solutions. This means 180 individual capsules to keep you going for a full half year, improving your physical and mental health at virtually no effort at all.
Everything Incite Nutrition puts out is held to rigorous GMP standards using some of the best ingredients going.
Finally, there is the reason I really love Incite Nutrition. They have what they call ‘Anti-anxiety customer service’. For a company that sells magnesium, a supplement perfect for those suffering with stress and anxiety, this is wonderful.
If you are unsatisfied with any part of your purchase – or indeed, if you want a full, no questions refund – simply contact them and they will promise to see you right.
Next up, we have a similar offering from a similarly great company, this time with Lindens’ high strength magnesium. Their capsules come loaded with 500mg of magnesium, which should deliver around 300mg, or around about 80% of most peoples’ RDA, of elemental magnesium per serving.
This is perhaps on the high side, though far from extreme. It’s great for those who want to mix supplements with dietary sources, but I would caution vigilance in looking out for side effects. As those doses inch higher (as they will continue to do in some of the products on this list), the risk of unwanted effects grows.
However, this should be enough to support healthy muscles, nervous system, bones, teeth, mood and so on without too much undue risk.
It will help to combat signs and symptoms of fatigue whilst leading to an overall uptick in health and wellbeing, once more from only a single pill per day.
Lindens are also a highly trusted, UK based company, with their factories and offices in Yorkshire in the north of England.
They are known for their high quality and decent standard of customer care. Their magnesium tablets are all well-packaged in foil-fresh, resealable pouches, all lightweight, all guaranteed to keep your supplements as potent as you would want them to be.
New Leaf Products
New Leaf Products’ offering on this list is a little bit clever. They give you a good dose of magnesium, as you would expect (a little over 500mg, in fact). However, they also add a very workable amount of zinc, which sets it apart from the crowd a little.
The two minerals work fairly synergistically when combined like this. Partly, zinc has its own benefits, including in hormone regulation and thus, in men, testosterone boosting output. However, it also increases magnesium’s bioavailability, allowing your body to actually absorb and use more of it.
Both also share some overlapping benefits. They are both key to healthy brain function and processing; zinc’s role here complements magnesium both directly and indirectly, as it will exacerbate its role in reducing symptoms of tiredness and fatigue.
In addition, zinc enables your body to make use of vitamin D and calcium, thus backing up magnesium’s benefits on the bones and teeth. Both are also associated with improved sleep quality, both aiding sleep quality itself and reducing fatigue when awake.
New Leaf Products are based in the UK, are highly reputable, and produce everything domestically under the highest of GMP standards. You get 365 tablets per purchase, giving you enough for a full twelve months. Everything is vegan and vegetarian friendly.
Let’s get a little specific in our magnesium use for a minute. Though you will experience all the benefits associated with improved magnesium intake with all magnesium supplements, some like to really zero in on specific facets.
This leads us to MAGNOX’s Leg Cramps Buster Cramps Plus, a fairly unwieldy name for a very good product. Unsurprisingly, it is designed to overcome leg cramps, which are a constant thorn in the side of many athletes – though, of course, non-athletes can suffer with them just as badly.
As we have seen, magnesium helps with healthy muscular function. And, of course, leg cramps are specifically cramps in the leg muscles. By supplementing with it, you should be able to overcome cramps, no matter how much they are bothering you.
Now, of course, any magnesium supplement should manage this. And MAGNOX will help you in other ways, too. But there are a few things going for it that would make me happily recommend it to any athlete.
Firstly, it has been clinically formulated specifically to ease muscular cramps. It has a very high, fast absorption rate, so can provide almost instant relief for leg cramps. This is all aided by a couple of added extras, perfect for overcoming pain. These include vitamins B and E, which should combine to promote muscular relaxation whilst improving intracellular absorption.
The magnesium itself is a digestive neutral, highly refined magnesium salt sourced from Egypt’s Dead Sea. It boasts triple the normal absorption of this kind of mineral. Your body can absorb their patented formula directly into your cells, where most magnesium supplements are only absorbed by your blood.
It really is quite clever.
Solgar have been going for over seventy years. This is a long time in any industry. In the supplements game, it’s basically forever. In that time, they have earned a reputation for top-tier products using high-quality ingredients, giving them the staying power that has kept them afloat for so long.
Their magnesium supplements are fantastic. You get a two to four month supply in each bottle, depending which one you go for and how many pills you take daily. This is perhaps a little short, but don’t this deter you. They are sort of the gold standard, regardless.
Solgar use the finest ingredients, create their products in small batches, and rigorously research and test their products at every stage of the design and manufacturing process to ensure the end result is as impressive as you would want it to be.
Each pill gives you 100mg of magnesium, which I quite like. Though this means that most of us will end up going for several pills per day (in one sitting, so it’s actually not too much bother), it really puts the ball in your court. You can decide how much to take in. For example, if you know your magnesium levels are chronically low, four pills per day should sort you out (this is the dosing they suggest themselves).
However, if you already eat a fair amount of magnesium rich foods, and are just using these as a top up, a pill or two should suffice.
It’s a great product that gives you a lot of control.
Best Immune’s magnesium supplements are a fine addition to any list of natural, effective magnesium pills. Their product is one of the most effective forms of magnesium malate that money can buy.
For starters, it is highly bioavailable. Your body will be able to absorb and process it very ably. The capsules themselves are designed to be rapid release, meaning that it should get to work fairly quickly – again, helping to deal with cramps as and when they occur, whilst also ring fencing your longer-term health and wellbeing.
There should also be minimal digestive impact, helping to mitigate against some of the more common side effects associated with magnesium supplementation.
It’s not the strongest supplement in this list. It gives you 500mg of magnesium, but only 70mg of elemental magnesium per capsule. However, you can easily double up, and you should count this one as far more of a supplement than the other items in this list.
Best Immune pride themselves on sourcing the best ingredients going, putting them on par with everything on this list, and on giving you quality ingredients rather than simply pricey packaging, which of course I fully support. There is nothing artificial in there, which should be a given (and generally is in this list) but isn’t always, is rigorously third-party tested, and you get a 100% money back guarantee if you’re not satisfied with it.
You get 100 capsules per purchase, which is enough for three months (or one to two months if you want to bring their strength up to par), and everything is suitable for vegetarians and vegans.
Nothing BUT Nutrition
I really like nothing BUT nutrition. Aside from having some really cool branding, their supplements are also superb. In fact, they state that 91% of their customers come back for more, repurchasing their products – that’s a hard level of customer satisfaction with which to argue.
Their magnesium supplements are also superb, if a little strong. Each serving gives you a pretty whopping 360mg of easily absorbed elemental magnesium. This is due to its incredibly high bioavailability – it stands at around 89%+, compared to the 4% often associated with cheaper products. This is in large part due to their decision to use the slightly costlier magnesium citrate over the cheap yet ineffective magnesium oxide that plenty of companies go with (though none in this list).
Everything is natural and high quality. They source their magnesium from the Dead Sea, the same as MAGNOX, whose waters are famously mineral rich. They purify this water, removing any residual sodium chloride and leaving just 100% high quality, bioavailable magnesium.
It’s also pretty easy on the digestive system which, as we have seen, magnesium often isn’t. Again, this is down to the choice and source of magnesium – magnesium citrate is twice as gentle (which I think means half as rough, though I’m not sure…) as other forms, making it perfect for anybody with sensitive stomachs.
Everything is third party tested for quality and purity. And by everything, I mean every single batch. The capsules are completely vegan and vegetarian friendly, are designed to be easy to swallow, and contain no GMOs or artificial ingredients.
It’s hard to pick a winner. Realistically, they are all good sources of good quality magnesium, which is near enough the only thing that matters. However, they aren’t quite all equal. For instance, some are stronger than others. If you want something with a good kick, I would highly recommend nothing But nutrition – their magnesium supplements are genuinely terrific. If you want something slightly lower, consider either Incite or, for your own control Solgar.
This being said, everything on our list is strong. If I were going in with my own money, I would want to go with nothing But nutrition. However, I wouldn’t be disappointed by anything I’ve looked at here.
Want to learn more about the role magnesium plays for us and why it’s so important? Then read on for more…
Why Do We Need Magnesium?
As I mentioned right at the beginning of this article, magnesium is very important. It doesn’t just benefit various areas of your health and wellbeing. It completely facilitates some of them – supporting healthy muscle and nerve function, giving you energy, and allowing for musculoskeletal health, among other things.
You won’t generally see symptoms of low magnesium intake (though this doesn’t mean that it isn’t affecting you). However, people who suffer with chronically low levels will see an increase to their risk from high blood pressure, heart disease, osteoporosis, and type II diabetes. This will come alongside depressed energy levels and diminished athletic ability.
Therefore, it is crucial to maintain an adequate intake, both from dietary sources and, where needed, from supplementation.
Benefits of Magnesium?
The benefits of magnesium therefore become very obvious. We need a good amount from dietary sources. Where this isn’t available, or where for other reasons we cannot get enough magnesium in our diets, we need to consider supplementation.
There are few noticeable areas of your physical and mental health that will stay unaffected by low levels of magnesium. Conversely, there are very few areas that won’t benefit from taking in an appropriate amount.
You will have far more energy when your magnesium levels are where they need to be. Magnesium is crucial to energy production, thus helping you with a natural lift. It is also closely associated with healthy muscular and nerve function. All told, this will give you more mental and physical energy alongside a good boost to your athletic ability.
As above, there are also several chronic health concerns associated with low magnesium levels, including life-threatening diseases like heart disease and type II diabetes, and debilitating ones like osteoporosis.
Maintaining appropriate magnesium levels will significantly diminish your risk of suffering from any of these.
It will also allow you to better maintain a healthy body mass. It is associated both with improved athletic ability and energy levels, as above, and with stabilised blood sugar levels. In improving your ability to exercise, it opens you up to maintaining lean muscle with low body fat. In stabilising your blood sugar levels, it will stop energy crashes and sudden hunger pangs, allowing you to stick far more easily to an appropriate caloric load.
Where Can We Get Magnesium From?
There are lots of everyday foods that include plenty of magnesium. However, we typically don’t get enough in our diets, generally by skipping these kinds of ingredients. Certainly consider supplementation if your magnesium levels are low.
However, also try to get a rich assortment of the following ingredients into your daily diet.
Foods that deliver plenty of magnesium include:
- Nuts, especially almonds and cashews
- Seeds like pumpkin and chia
- Leafy greens like spinach, collard greens, and kale
- Whole grains like whole grain bread, oats, and brown rice
- Dairy, including yoghurt and cow’s milk. Note also that almond milk is a good source of magnesium
- Beans and legumes, like kidney beans, edamame, black beans, and peanuts
- Certain fish, including salmon and halibut
How Much Magnesium Do We Need?
We actually don’t need that much magnesium. It’s a micronutrient. Where macronutrients like protein and fat are measure in grams, we typically measure micronutrients in milligrams or micrograms.
The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) states that adult men should be taking in between 400-420 mg daily. Adult women who are not pregnant should be aiming at more like 310-320 mg. Pregnant women need a little more, at between around 350-360 mg daily, as they need extra to support the baby’s growth.
We can get most, if not all, of this from food – simply fill your diet with the kinds of foods mentioned above. It’s also very hard to over consume magnesium from food. Healthy adults shouldn’t see this as any kind of concern.
High intake from supplementation is a different matter, however. If your supplement is causing undue, high levels of magnesium, you may experience side effects such as nausea, abdominal cramping and diarrhoea.
As well as these side effects, supplementary magnesium may interfere with certain types of medicine, perhaps most notably antibiotics.
If you experience any of the above symptoms, consider stopping your supplementation and consult your doctor. If you’re unsure about intake, or are currently taking any other kind of medicine, consult your doctor before taking any new supplement.