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Magnesium supplements and tiredness/sleepiness/muscle weakness?

Discussion in 'General Treatment' started by penny, Dec 3, 2012.

  1. penny

    penny Senior Member

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    I've been taking magnesium (malate) for quite a while now, and I believe it helps me, most noticeably with muscle tension/cramping/pain. I typically take a dose in the morning, a dose in the evening plus an epsom salt bath before bed. I split the dose this way because I wanted to try and get more in every day but taking a single large dose seemed like it would be pointless because of bowel tolerance/absorption.

    Anyway, I've been bad about taking my supplements the last week or so because of nausea (well, the last month but very bad last week) and noticed some ill effects that I think were attributable to missing my normal supplements (increased muscle soreness at night=disrupted sleep, constipation, muscle cramps), but also feeling a little less tired. I am back 'on the wagon', and have this feeling that I get significantly more sleepy/tired/weak after my morning dose of pills, which includes magnesium, potassium, salt and folate.

    I know that magnesium helps relax muscles, and that it helps some people sleep, and it got me thinking that perhaps taking my morning magnesium dose is actually reducing my overall functionality and making me feel worse in the morning.

    My evidence is weak, since so many factors can be at play in how one feels minute to minute, day to day and week to week, but I am wondering if others have noticed magnesium making them feel more tired, sleepy or weak? Or if you know a reason why it might have this effect.

    Thanks, as always, for sharing your wonderful collective experience and wisdom!
    merylg and L'engle like this.
  2. AFCFS

    AFCFS Senior Member

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    I take magnesium and do well with it. It does not make me feel more tired, but more relaxed.

    Improper use of antacids or milk of magnesia can create magnesium toxicity. With severe elevations of magnesium in the bloodstream, called hypermagnesemia, other symptoms such as loss of muscle reflexes, breathing problems, irregular heartbeat and dangerously low blood pressure can occur.

    So, it is conceivable that low blood pressure from magnesium toxicity may make one tired, but it also seems that would not likely occur in isolation from other symptoms. But as we are all so individualistic in our responses to meds and supplements, who knows?

    I have had two docs that would like me to be on less supplements (after one suggested many) and told me the best way to go about it was either to pair down one at a time and see if I was missing it, or start from zero and add on. If had a definite positive impact to keep it. Otherwise, do not use it. As I have been doing this, I have seen very few supplements worth keeping around. Some have had a bit of positive impact but then really nothing miraculous.

    They also noted that combinations I had figured out to be effective for me were OK (like L-Tryptophan, Melatonin, and GABA for sleep) but also might want to toy around with taking one out, adjusting dose, etc.

    Think any supplementation - on or off - should be discussed with a doc.
    merylg likes this.
  3. madietodd

    madietodd Senior Member

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    I take 400mg of mag glycinate, all at night, and it doesn't help me sleep.
  4. L'engle

    L'engle moderate ME

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    I take magnesium everyday. If I don't next thing I know, any exertion causes a headache. If I have a headache and it's from exertion, unless it's from poor sleep or something toxic in the air, I can usually improve it with magnesium.
    merylg likes this.
  5. caledonia

    caledonia

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    I take 7 teaspoons of magnesium glycinate divided throughout the day (2000 mg mag glycinate/300mg magnesium per tsp). It makes my muscles feel relaxed. Without it, I have restless legs that keep me awake all night long, heart palpitations and constipation.

    I haven't noticed any effect, good or bad on energy. It does help me feel relaxed at bedtime - that's when I take the biggest dose (4 tsp).

    The folate might be causing detox, which would make you feel worse. Try reducing the dose and see if that helps.
    merylg likes this.
  6. AFCFS

    AFCFS Senior Member

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    I have used 200-1000 mg / day of Magnesium Orotate. Here is an article and some links if they help:

    Also, a good overview here, at University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC), including this snippet of advice:
    It is a good idea to take a B vitamin complex, or a multivitamin containing B vitamins, because the level of vitamin B6 in the body determines how much magnesium will be absorbed into the cells.

    And then here from WebMD, as well as How Much Magnesium Is Harmful?, and Magnesium is Vital for Good Health.

    I mentioned this in another post, but may also be useful here: Magnesium and the Brain: The Original Chill Pill.

    Dosing guidelines vary, as well as treatment objectives.
  7. penny

    penny Senior Member

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    Thanks for all the ideas & input!

    L'engle Interesting about the headaches! I'll have to try some magnesium the next time I get a headache.

    caledonia Also, I'd be surprised if the folate is causing detox symptoms after over a year of regular use, a fairly modest dose (800mcg). Anyway, I suspect that'd be one supplement my doc's would not want me to drop, what with a bun in the oven ; )

    AFCFS I don't think I have magnesium toxicity, though I guess I don't know that for sure. My dosage isn't terribly high (~560mg of mag malate - not including the malic acid, plus the epsom salt bath) and by all indications my kidney function is fine.

    I do have a strong negative reaction to calcium, and supplemental magnesium has seemed to help counteract/balance this. But maybe I need less of it than I used to, I am being quite good about calcium avoidance so perhaps I don't need as much to counterbalance...

    I do still think it helps me, maybe by making sleep more possible (by reducing one of my obstacles - muscle pain) but I never thought of it as making me sleepy before. But hypothetically if it helps with muscle relaxation, I wonder if it could inadvertently exacerbate POTS symptoms (by decreasing muscle tone thus decreasing vasoconstriction)? Hmmmm....

    Maybe I'll try cutting out my morning dose for a bit and see if my 'energy' patterns in the morning change any...
    merylg and AFCFS like this.
  8. penny

    penny Senior Member

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    Thanks! I do take a b-complex and b6 (as well as b12 and handful of other supp's), though neither are in the same morning dose that my magnesium is in. I generally take:
    - before breakfast - folate, magnesium, potassium, salt
    - after breakfast - lysine, b-complex, salt, vit. c, b12 (was taking serine, but moved to evening dose for a trial)
    - afternoon - lysine, potassium, salt, vit. c (sometimes more b12)
    - after dinner/bedtime - lysine, magnesium, b6, serine, potassium (zinc, when I think my stomach will tolerate it)

    And over the last year and a half I've had good overall improvement but specifically have lost my 'wired/tired' hypersensitivity. I can not only ride in a car without twitching/panicking at every motion, but can drive! as well as a ton of improvement in tolerating sunlight and noise (distinguishing foreground from background noise), handling stress/adrenaline, and in particular being woken up in the middle of the night by noise (which used to just suck, suck, suck). I think a lot of this could be related to the types of 'good' things that decreased nmda/glutamate and increased gaba can do (although admittedly my grasp on the why here is very weak), and I think (for me at least) the magnesium supplements and calcium avoidance help with this. So yes, I can totally see magnesium as a chill pill ;)
    AFCFS likes this.
  9. robertpcx

    robertpcx

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    Hi penny,

    I have experienced the same thing after taking my morning magnesium. I don't feel bad or anything but I do feel like I need to take a nap and I'll stretch out in my recliner. And I fall into a sort of stupor and I will fall asleep for maybe half an hour. I don't fall asleep very easily so this for me is a relief as I can get some badly needed sleep and just go with it.

    Magnesium does have a mild sedative effect.

    After a week of this the heavy or stuper feeling went away and it has not come back. I think it is the magnesium doing it's job.

    How much of magnesium do you take per day?

    I take a sustained release magnesium product which releases the magnesium slowly over a period of 8 hours. And doesn't cause the diarea associated with other oral magnesium supplements. Jigsaw magnesium w/srt.

    A new oral magnesium product on the market is highly concentrated and 100% aborbed search: (Dr.Carolyn Dean MD ND and ReMag) Dr. Dean wrote the book called "the magnesium miracle" and is one of the formost researcher into the benefits of magnesium. Maybe you have heard of her.

    I have not had the opportunity to try the ReMag product yet as it is on backorder and will not ship out untill Dec. 6, 3 days from now.

    Hope this helps.
  10. caledonia

    caledonia

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    Hmmm, maybe what you're describing as tired/sleepy/weak is the same as what others are called a relaxed sensation. You're only taking the mag twice a day, so maybe you could take the same total dose subdivided into four equal doses throughout the day. Or three smaller equal doses with a higher dose at bedtime, which is how I do it.

    ps. congratulation on your lil bun! Hope it all goes well.
  11. penny

    penny Senior Member

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    Thanks Robertpcx, it does sound similar, and you describe it better than I did. It isn't an unpleasant feeling, as Caledonia points out maybe it's the same as being relaxed. And it often seems to be the overpowering desire for a nap, which is odd since I've usually just woken up. I think the problem is more my timing, I need to be awake in the morning (at least when working) not sleepy and relaxed.

    I think you're right, I'm going to start with just omitting my morning dose, and see if the relaxed feeling actually goes away (or whether it's something other than the magnesium causing it) and how I sleep with only my evening dose + epsom salt bath. Then maybe add a bit back in, like you suggest in small doses, or maybe one of the extended release products Robertpcx mentions.

    Thanks! I hope so too, but so far so good (if not easy, though from what I hear, even without ME or POTS it isn't usually particularly easy ;)

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