6

votes

How is supplementing with magnesium citrate different than becoming dependent on laxatives?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created July 28, 2012 at 2:20 PM

I see a lot of people on here talking about taking magnesium citrate as a dietary supplement. Since magnesium citrate is used as a laxative, why is supplementing with it not considered the same thing as making yourself dependent on laxatives?

C485035d5c6471d5d648a15f3f50ae9d

(0)

on August 16, 2012
at 01:45 PM

Natural Calm is Magnesium Citrate. Magnesium carbonate is used to make magnesium citrate.

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on July 30, 2012
at 12:43 PM

Thanks. My question was really more about the difference between the two preparations of Mg citrate: either the fizzy laxative liquid in a bottle, or the tablet supplements. (Also, I don't think Mg sulfate works because of it's bitterness--it draws water to the bowel the same way as any other.)

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on July 30, 2012
at 12:36 PM

Thanks. My question was really about the two different preparations of Mg citrate

E35e3d76547b18096a59c90029e7e107

(15613)

on July 30, 2012
at 07:21 AM

I heard that magnesium citrate produces less of a laxative effect to magnesium *oxide* because the former is more easily absorbed. I don't know how sulfate compares to citrate, but that could be it. Also the sulfate factor per se, could be the cause- I find Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) supplements to be quite hard on the gut and the normal bitter taste of epsom salts would seem to indicate that it stimulates/irritates digestion.

78964c5cc470f86a5897db8e1ce8e6f9

on July 28, 2012
at 05:29 PM

It's worth noting that Natural Calm is magnesium carbonate. I don't think it has as strong a laxative effect as citrate and sulfate.

Af939911afa817f79a4625d4f503c735

(552)

on July 28, 2012
at 03:10 PM

Magnesium is an essential mineral that has other functions in the body. I take it (Natural Calm) for sleep.

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8 Answers

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10
6d64cd6dc98d6ab763bd03678a317964

(2177)

on July 28, 2012
at 03:00 PM

Because laxative dependency usually arises from the over use of stimulant laxatives. Magnesium is a stool softener not a stimulant laxative. It draws water into the bowel to make it easier to go. Stimulants cause contractions. Your brain is still in control when you use something like magnesium.

2
A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on July 28, 2012
at 02:59 PM

Good question. I have used magnesium citrate (the fizzy liquid in a bottle that's hard to drink) as a laxative, and boy howdy, does it work. Magnesium sulfate (epsom salts) works just as well. Both have kind of a bitter/metallic taste.

Curiously, I was Mg depleted once, and was so desperate for relief that I drank some magnesium sulfate in water, and it tasted SWEET, not bitter, and it's laxative effect seemed quite diminished (though still active). Once I was replete with Mg, it tasted bitter again. Very interesting phenomenon that suggests all kinds of things about the purposes of being able to taste things.

However, when I take magnesium citrate pills to supplement Mg missing from my diet, it doesn't seem to have the laxative effect at all. I would like to know why the two preparations with the same compound perform so differently. Perhaps it's a dose-related thing, but I can't understand how to compare the label from the liquid to a tablet.

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on July 30, 2012
at 12:36 PM

Thanks. My question was really about the two different preparations of Mg citrate

E35e3d76547b18096a59c90029e7e107

(15613)

on July 30, 2012
at 07:21 AM

I heard that magnesium citrate produces less of a laxative effect to magnesium *oxide* because the former is more easily absorbed. I don't know how sulfate compares to citrate, but that could be it. Also the sulfate factor per se, could be the cause- I find Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) supplements to be quite hard on the gut and the normal bitter taste of epsom salts would seem to indicate that it stimulates/irritates digestion.

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on July 30, 2012
at 12:43 PM

Thanks. My question was really more about the difference between the two preparations of Mg citrate: either the fizzy laxative liquid in a bottle, or the tablet supplements. (Also, I don't think Mg sulfate works because of it's bitterness--it draws water to the bowel the same way as any other.)

1
8292546789ca48c32ead34c6e884d059

on July 28, 2012
at 02:52 PM

Probably because the magnesium can be used for other things in your body. My doc recommended 10000mg of Vitamin C if I don't go every day. You could always be dependent on prunes if that makes you feel better.

0
67871ef2326f29da48f1522827fc0f80

(704)

on June 01, 2013
at 04:04 PM

I take Naturally Calm, too, as it's not going to have that laxative effect. Plus, magnesium is the ONLY laxative (if you choose the more laxative-effective varieties) my gastro-enterologist says are safe for me. I'm Celiac with other autoimmune issues. I tend to NOT get diarrhea as some people think IBS/IBD people 'always have.' I go into bowel lockdown due to spasms, which is a bad, bad thing.

Natural Calm is a great supplement for me since it doesn't affect pooing -- therefore I keep other forms of mag for when I need them.

0
C6032b723b12cf0073ec6d22c5f4e7ae

on June 01, 2013
at 04:00 PM

Anthraquinones like senna are the worst for laxative dependency, but I know some formulas that draw water into the colon can be habit-forming as well. Try Triphala, it's an effective laxative that actually supports peristalsis, and it also has quite the cleansing effect.

0
F0aac0b1625c6b7b5c4c4f96fc426352

on June 01, 2013
at 03:29 PM

It's a dosage (mg) effect. Take the same total mag citrate dosage in supplement caps as the liquid laxative adult dose and you'll poop your pants. Not recommended though.

0
191ca96209155910aca7a11f833729f2

on January 02, 2013
at 07:43 PM

I take Mag cit once a month usally on the first weekend to clean out the colon is this too much of a good thing

0
E35e3d76547b18096a59c90029e7e107

(15613)

on July 30, 2012
at 07:25 AM

Using magnesium citrate constantly as a laxative, i.e. taking excess amounts (more than you can absorb) in order to have a bowel movement, would be similar to abusing laxatives in at least on respect. Namely, it would produce some of the downsides of laxative abuse e.g. loss of nutrients because you can't digest them.

Using magnesium citrate wouldn't have some of the harmful effects of abusing laxatives though e.g. senna, as I understand it, is just slightly toxic and irritates the gut, thus producing the laxative effect and I'm assuming that irritating the gut lining is a bad thing.

I would also imagine that the laxative side-effects of magnesium don't diminish (so much) with time because, as noted in previous answers, magnesium produces its laxative effect by drawing water into the gut (rather like some fibres), rather than through a harmful or irritant effect which is contra to the bodies homeostatis and so which the body wants to become resistant to. In consequence, unlike traditional laxatives, one wouldn't need to increase the dose constantly in order to produce the same effect.

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