When Is the Best Time to Take Magnesium Supplements ( 2018 Update)

​Magnesium is one of the most important minerals in the body. It helps maintain normal cellular function. Knowing the answer to when’s the best time to take magnesium will help you maximize its benefits.

What Is Magnesium?

This essential mineral functions in many ways. The body needs about 320 mg of elemental magnesium per day in order to function normally.

What Does Magnesium Do?

This mineral plays a central role in more than 300 enzymatic reactions. It is used by the muscles and nerves for normal function. The immune system also needs magnesium to stay healthy. The heart beats regularly, thanks in part to the presence of magnesium.

The bones are strong because of calcium. Magnesium also plays an important role in this, along with phosphorus.​

What Is Magnesium Used For?

There are so many uses of magnesium in the body. Magnesium pills and magnesium powder are used not just to make sure the body gets the RDA (recommended dietary allowance). The following are some of the purposes for supplementing with magnesium:

  • Sleep improvement
  • Relief of muscle spasms and aches
  • Increased energy
  • Calms the nerves
  • Treat insomnia
  • Relieve constipation
  • Regulate potassium and calcium
  • Improve heart health
  • Prevent osteoporosis
  • Prevent migraines

These magnesium benefits can be obtained by taking supplements. Magnesium in foods may not be in amounts large enough to promote these benefits if you are deficient.

The best magnesium supplements deliver higher doses. These higher doses might be enough to promote the above mentioned benefits of magnesium and correct your deficiency.

What Are the Best Types of Magnesium Supplements?

The most common types of magnesium supplements with good absorption are:

  • Magnesium Chelate​
    This form is highly absorbable. This is the type naturally found in high magnesium containing foods. This is the best form of magnesium to take because it is readily absorbed and used by the cells.
  • Magnesium Citrate
    Benefits include improvement of digestive processes and relief/prevention of constipation. This has a laxative effect when overdosed. This type is commonly used in combination with citric acid.

Other types include magnesium glycinate, magnesium chloride oil and magnesium threonate. See the following article where we cover the best forms of magnesium more in detail.

How Much Magnesium Should I Take?

There is no danger of magnesium toxicity if you are mainly getting the mineral from food. However, concerns of taking too much magnesium mainly arise from the laxative effect. Taking more than 600 milligrams per day may overstimulate the digestive tract, leading to frequent bowel movements.

The recommended daily dosage to avoid magnesium side effects is no more than 300-400mg elemental magnesium per dose.

​Try taking magnesium via Epsom salt. One product, Epsoak Epsom Salt, contains 100% pure magnesium in the form of magnesium sulfate. This product is free of GMO and is certified kosher.

Epsom salt is added to baths. You soak in the bath water and allow magnesium to be absorbed via the skin.​

Getting your magnesium absorbed through the skin makes it difficult to overdose since the body won't absorb more than it needs this way.

When to Take Magnesium?

There are no prevailing standards for taking magnesium. Timing is only a small part of ensuring you get the right amounts. The most important thing is to take magnesium every day.

However, there are prevailing theories that may help get the most out of magnesium. The timing is also believed to help reduce any side effects of magnesium.​

Taking a soaking bath in Epsom salt (with pure magnesium) can help relax the muscles. You may take this after an exercise to help relax the muscles and relieves aches and spasms. You may also take this soaking bat before going to bed to improve sleep.

Take magnesium 1-2 hours before bedtime. This will give ample time for the mineral to calm the nerves and muscles for better sleep quality.

Another likely explanation for this schedule is the time the body absorbs and uses calcium and magnesium. When you take magnesium at night, you are essentially maximizing how much of it will be absorbed and actually used by your cells.

Magnesium also helps in the repair processes. These processes happens mostly at night, while you are asleep. Again, by taking magnesium before sleep, you give enough ammo for the body to use in its nighttime repair process.​


Knowing about when’s the best time to take magnesium is not a matter of life and death. However, it may help your body maximize the absorption and use of this mineral for improved overall health and cellular function.

Product Image credits: Amazon.com

Alex Eriksson (Research Analysis)

Alex Eriksson is the founder of Anabolic Health, a men’s health blog dedicated to providing honest and research-backed advice for optimal male hormonal health. Anabolic Health aspires to become a trusted resource where men can come and learn how to fix their hormonal problems naturally, without pharmaceuticals.

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