How much magnesium are you really absorbing?

Not as much as you might think!


Today we're going to talk about how much magnesium are you really absorbing. This is a sneak preview of the material that I'm going to be presenting today at the Quantum Health Summit, which it’s not too late to register for. I’m a little late getting this video out (I’ll be presenting in moments), but if you get the paid version, you have access to all the recordings after the event. This is also the kind of content that I’m publishing in the paid version of this Substack, which I encourage you to subscribe to. I'm giving people insights that are based on real papers interpreted through the eyes of someone who actually sees patients and measures their labs - not some ivory-tower expert.

Without further ado, let's talk about how much magnesium you're really absorbing. There are a lot of factors in your magnesium absorption, that can can change, such as which supplement you're using, how much of it you're taking, when you're dosing it, and what your other nutrient levels are. This is a great paper on magnesium absorption in healthy people. They gave people different supplementation levels of magnesium with different meals, and they looked at the absorption. One of the things I want you all to recognize and appreciate is that the highest and lowest levels of magnesium absorption were 65 and 11%. The more magnesium you consume, the less you absorb. At high doses, you only absorb 11%. At low doses, you absorb up to 65%. This is why people, to really fix their magnesium status, have to use so much magnesium.

I’ll be going into more detail as to why this is in my talk during the Summit. I’ll be discussing how magnesium balance works, including losses in urine, stool, sweat, obligate losses, and then how much you're generally speaking, taking in if you eat, you know, different types of diets. Vitamin D is well known to affect magnesium absorption and retention as well as calcium absorption and retention. If you've watched some of my other content on magnesium (See my Magnesium 101 video), you know that magnesium and potassium together determine where calcium goes in the body. You can't replace calcium in the body until you've got your magnesium status corrected.

You’ll see from the graphs in this paper that magnesium absorption tapers off as you take in more and more of it. You’ll also see that magnesium intake and calcium intake co-vary - whether that is causation or coincidence is another story. This is part of why as people increase their magnesium intake, their risk of osteoporosis drops. You can also see how much different forms of magnesium vary in terms of absorption. Magnesium from almonds and magnesium acetate is highly absorbable, but a commercially available form (Slow Mag) is much less absorbable. The form you take matters and this is why buying from places like Amazon is a major mistake. You can see what forms of magnesium I use in my practice by logging into my online dispensary at this link. You get a discount on the products that I use and my supplement proceeds go to help people who are struggling to overcome the effects of pharmaceutical-injuries, or those injured in our nation’s military service or in the line of duty as first responders. Proceeds from my Substack blog and affiliate commissions on products I sell also go toward helping these people.

I hope you enjoy this video and blog post - I encourage you to subscribe to the paid version of this Substack for more great content like this!

Be well,

Dr. Stillman