What’s the best type of Magnesium supplement

magnesium atom on the periodic tableLet’s assume you’ve read about the benefits of magnesium supplementating, someone suggested you take it, whatever. You decide to get yourself a bottle at GNC or any other store, but it comes in many forms depending on the brand and you don’t know which one to buy.

Generally when we’re looking for the best results out of a supplement, we’re looking for highest absorption rates and lowest undesirable side effects (nothing too crazy here, but some supplements cause temporary digestive problems). An affordable price helps too ;P


Most common forms of magnesium supplements

Here’s a list of the most common types of magnesium supplement products you will encounter on the shelves :

Magnesium oxide :

The one you’ll find in most supplements and multivitamins. Very affordable but shows poor level of bioavailability (around 4%).

Magnesium Orotate :

Considered the superior form of magnesium supplementation; gets well absorbed in the body but is more expensive than other forms.

Magnesium Sulfate :

Commonly referred to as Epsom Salts. Used as home remedy for constipation and can be put in hot baths for relaxation purposes. Also used for the less popular liver cleanse. Very affordable, shows low level of bioavailability.

Magnesium Citrate :

mag citrate probably best form of suppCombined with citric acid, provides very good bioavailability. Not much more expensive than mag. oxide.

Magnesium Malate :

Combined with malic acid, also provides high bioavailability. Also very affordable.. comparable to mag. citrate.

Magnesium chelates :

Chelated magnesium, which means that it is being held in place by a larger molecule such an amino acid, proves to have better absorption rates. Chelates are normally more expensive than malate, citrate or oxide forms.

Magnesium l-threonate :

hyped up product magnesium l-threonateRecently put out on the market, l-threonate from has received a lot of hype about it’s superior effects on brain health. Some even call it a nootropic (a mind/brain enhancing substance).

See the hype in action here and here.

Unfortunately, that seems to be nothing more than hype, according to this forum post on longecity referring to a study on l-threonate.


So, which type of supp. should I choose?

magnesium orotate is one of the best types of mag supplementOkay, here’s my suggestion, in order of preference :

  1. Magnesium Orotate, if you don’t mind spending the extra money;
  2. Mag. Citrate – not much difference with the orotate form, just way cheaper;
  3. Mag. Malate – pretty much like citrate, sometimes a little more expensive.


Also, make sure to check out :

Best type of zinc supplement


  1. says

    I am struggling on a daily basis to lower my blood pressure/blood sugar. Been taking magnesium/potassium/aspartate for at least 2 months now and hardly see much difference. BP is still ranging from 140/80 on prescribed medication for high BP,, and blood sugar fairly high..on no prescribed medication from my doctor.. as he states that I am borderline diabetic with an A1C of 6.2-6.3. watch my diet ie low carbs. diet chromium from the health food store and exercise/yoga…My main question which form of magnesium is best for these conditions,,eg magmesium chloride……

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