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How Much Magnesium Citrate For Migraines

What Is The Role Of Magnesium In Migraine


Two double-blind studies have shown that magnesium supplementation may reduce the frequency of migraine.1,2 Research studies reveal that magnesium levels affect serotonin receptors, and also have an effect on nitric oxide synthesis and release, as well as on NMDA receptorsall brain structures and chemicals suspected to be important in migraine. In small studies, both migraine and cluster headache patients have responded during headache attacks to intravenous magnesium. In a larger double-blind controlled study looking at prevention, the treatment group receiving 600 mg of magnesium for a 12 week period experienced a 41.6% reduction in headaches as compared to only 15.8% reduction in migraine headaches in the placebo group.2 Another controlled trial at a dose of 485 mg did not show benefit.3

How Magnesium Is Regulated:

Magnesium in the blood reflects a balance between absorption in the gut and elimination through the kidney. Magnesium absorption is reduced by some stomach medications for reflux, called proton pump inhibitors. Some of them are over the counter — e.g. prilosec. This means that it is especially important to take magnesium supplements for migraine prevention, if you take a PPI. Magnesium is regulated through the kidney, where it is reabsorbed. Incomplete reabsorption causes magnesium wasting .

There are about a dozen genes that result in hypmagnesiumia – but these are extremely rare in clinical medicine, and finding them does not contribute to therapy .

What Is Magnesium Citrate

Magnesium citrate is an over-the-counter magnesium preparation made with a combination of salt and citric acid. Magnesium citrate is sometimes described as a saline laxative because it effectively works to relieve constipation and clear out the intestines, thanks to its ability to increase water and fluids in the small intestine. However, treating occasional constipation is not the only use for magnesium citrate supplements they are also taken for nutritional support.

What does magnesium citrate do for the body?

Magnesium itself is an essential, multipurposed mineral involved in over 300 enzymatic reactions in the body. About 99 percent of the total magnesium found in the human body is located in bones, muscles and non-muscular soft tissue. The main purpose of using magnesium citrate and other forms of magnesium is to maintain healthy levels, since magnesium deficiency can contribute to a wide variety of symptoms and conditions. These include trouble sleeping, headaches, fatigue, and muscle aches or spams.

Magnesium citrate benefits and uses include:

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How Much Should You Take

Talk to your doctor before taking magnesium supplements. If they give you the go-ahead, they may suggest 400 milligrams a day as a starting dose. Some research studies give people with migraines up to 600 milligrams a day. Donât take more than 1,200 milligrams a day. If you already take a multivitamin, check to see if it contains magnesium.

What If I Take Magnesium And It Doesn’t Work

Magnesium for Migraines: All about

The benefits of supplements can take a while to show up, so try to wait three or four months before giving up on magnesium.

If magnesium’s still not working for you after a few months, you might want to switch to a different supplement with a track record of reducing migraine frequency, like riboflavin or Coenzyme Q10 , or a preventive medication.

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How Much Magnesium Oxide Should I Take For Migraines

Magnesium oxide is frequently used in pill form to prevent migraine, usually at a dose of 400-500 mg per day. Acutely, it can be dosed in pill form at the same dosage, or given intravenously as magnesium sulfate at 1-2 gm. The most frequent side effect is diarrhea, which can be helpful in those prone to constipation.

Consider The Rules Of Thumb

How much does the average person need? What is a typical healthy intake of magnesium? It depends on who you ask.

Health Canada gives Recommended Dietary Allowances for magnesium:

  • For adult men, the RDA is 400 420 milligrams per day .
  • Adult women need 310 320 mg/day, unless they are pregnant, in which case adult women should consume about 350 mg/day.

Now, these numbers are based on height and weight averages, generalized across the population.

Dr. Carolyn Dean, a leading expert on magnesium, recommends 3 4 mg per pound of bodyweight for adults .

If you are

  • 100 pound , thats 300 400 mg of magnesium
  • 125 lbs, you need 375 500 mg
  • 150 lbs, aim for 450 600 mg
  • 175 lbs, look for 525 700 mg
  • 200 lbs, youll need 600 800 mg

You can see how by Dr. Deans formula, many normal weight adults will need much more than the RDA.

But base requirements arent all you need to consider. There are also lifestyle factors that use up magnesium stores and increase our requirements.

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What Is The Best Magnesium For Migraines

Did you know that roughly 1 out of every 6 Americans suffers from migraines ?

Migraines are severe headaches that are often accompanied by symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light or sound, and vision disturbances.

Unfortunately, there is no definitive cure for migraines , so treatment is usually focused on reducing the number of attacks and managing symptoms.

Medications, such as over-the-counter painkillers and prescription drugs, are often used to treat and prevent migraines, but natural remedies are becoming more popular.

One promising option for those seeking natural migraine relief is to try magnesium supplements.

In this article, well explain the link between magnesium and migraines and tell you which magnesium supplement is best for preventing migraines.

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  • Final Thoughts
  • What Type Of Magnesium Should You Take For Migraines

    Migraine Headache Relief with Magnesium

    There are many different types of magnesium that were tested for the management of migraines. I personally like to take magnesium calm, a form of magnesium citrate because I like the way it tastes, believe it is efficiently absorbed, and tends to significantly reduce stress. That said, theres no specific magnesium that is definitively more effective or superior to others for migraine prophylaxis or treatment. Below are various types of magnesium that you could consider testing if you are susceptible to migraines.

    Note: There are other forms of magnesium on the market such as magnesium chelate. To determine whether one type of magnesium may be safer or more effective than another for management of migraines, consult a medical professional.

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    How Magnesium May Prevent Or Treat Migraines

    The specific mechanisms by which magnesium supplementation prevents migraines remains unclear. That said, magnesium may yield therapeutic benefit by: inhibiting cortical spreading depression, modulating serotonin, decreasing excitability of NMDA receptors, and/or reducing calcitonin gene-related peptide . Abnormally low levels of magnesium are understood to increase risk of migraine attacks, and for many individuals with magnesium deficits, increasing its intake can reduce frequency of attacks by over 40%.

    Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide : A biomarker commonly assessed among migraine sufferers is CGRP or calcitonin gene-related peptide. A report by DAndrea et al. entitled Pathogenesis of Migraine: Role of Neuromodulators implies that abnormalities in synthesis of neurotransmitters as well as neuromodulators , may facilitate activation of the trigeminal system to upregulate levels of CGRP.

    Increased levels of CGRP is understood to provoke neurogenic inflammation which triggers migraine attacks via cortical spreading depression. A study conducted by Myrdal et al. assessed the effect of magnesium sulphate infusions on CGRP concentrations. It was discovered that infusions of magnesium sulphate significantly decreased CGRP from 15.5 pmol to 10 pmol.

            Risks Side Effects And Interactions

            Magnesium citrate may have a laxative effect in some cases when taken in high doses but is otherwise considered safe for most people.

            That said, its possible for magnesium citrate side effects to occur, especially if you take a high dose for an extended period of time. Magnesium citrate side effects may include:

            • Dehydration symptoms/loss of too much body water
            • Diarrhea
            • Abdominal pain, gas and nausea
            • Weakness
            • Rarely, serious side effects like slow/irregular heartbeat, mental/mood changes, persistent diarrhea, severe/persistent stomach/abdominal pain, bloody stools, rectal bleeding, decreased urination and allergic reactions

            You dont want to use magnesium citrate too often because this can wind up causing dependence on the product and loss of normal bowel function. People who abuse laxatives, including magnesium citrate, may not be able to have normal bowel movement without using the product after some time.

            You also shouldnt take magnesium citrate or other laxatives if youre taking antibiotics, especially tetracycline/quinolone. If you need to take both, take them at least two hours apart. If you have any of the following medical conditions, talk to your doctor before you start taking magnesium citrate: kidney disease, GI issues that last longer than two weeks, frequent stomach pains, nausea, vomiting, or if youve been told to follow a low-magnesium or low-potassium diet.

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            What Is The Best Magnesium For Migraine

            When people search for a new magnesium supplement without knowing what to look for, they usually focus on price. This means many arent getting the full potential out of the supplements theyre taking. This could be because our body doesnt agree with that particular form of magnesium. Or it could be that the supplement contains additional fillers or potential Migraine triggers, making it poor quality and more difficult to absorb.

            What They Are Used For

            Which Magnesium is Best for Migraines?

            A dietary supplement is a product that contains ingredients to supplement your diet. The dietary ingredients in these products may include: vitamins, minerals, herbs, amino acids, and substances such as enzymes. People take supplements for a variety of reasons, but usually to boost their diet or to try and help with their health.

            Many people with migraine try supplements to help their symptoms. There are many different supplements that claim to be helpful for migraine and headache. However, there is limited evidence about how effective these are. Only a few have some evidence to show potential benefit including riboflavin , magnesium and Co-enzyme Q10.

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            What If You Cannot Tolerate Oral Supplemental Magnesium

            Unfortunately, some of us have very sensitive tummies. Even though the more absorbable and best magnesium for headache and migraine have been discussed above, some people may still have unacceptable symptoms. Here are a few suggestions:

            • Always take magnesium with food.
            • Since there are so many forms of magnesium, try each of the more absorbable types one by one. Yes, this can get frustrating and expensive, but is worth it if you find success. Give the ones that do not work well to someone you love. Magnesium is excellent for much more than migraine.
            • Try two other forms that I did not mention above, magnesium chloride and magnesium malate. They are also typically well-tolerated.
            • Experiment with the time of day that you take the supplement.
            • Dont get discouraged if you can tolerate only lower amounts of magnesium but not 400 mg/day or more. Take what you can and focus on eating some wholesome food .

            Why Magnesium Glycinate For Migraines

            Magnesium glycinate is a form of magnesium that absorbs very well and this becomes crucial when we understand that it is not just about the nutrients that you put into your mouth, but also the amount of those nutrients that get absorbed and used by your body.

            Generally, magnesium glycinate and threonate are recommended for their great absorption and utilization by the body and this is what I have found with migraine sufferers.

            See this pin for different types of magnesium and what they are good for:

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            Lifestyle Factors That Increase Magnesium Needs

            According to Dr. Carolyn Dean, diet, exercise, perspiration, medication and more can deplete the bodys magnesium and/or increase demand for magnesium . Many of these factors are quite common, including:

            • Caffeine
            • Certain medications, including diuretics, asthma medications, birth control pills, insulin, digitalis, certain antibiotics
            • Illicit drugs, including cocaine and nicotine
            • Stress

            What Dosage Of Magnesium Is Most Effective For Migraines

            How Supplementing WIth Magnesium Daily Can Help Reduce Migraine Pain

            It is difficult to pinpoint the specific dosage of magnesium that should be used for the prevention of migraines. Some individuals may require much higher doses than others due to the fact that they are severely deficient. Others may require significantly lower doses due to the fact that they arent as deficient. Therefore, it may take some experimentation and discussion with your doctor to determine a safe, optimal dose of magnesium for migraine management.

            The publication entitled Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain recommends doses of 400 mg to 500 mg per day of magnesium oxide in oral pill form for migraine prophylaxis. When used acutely as an abortive therapy, it can be administered in pill form at a similar dose or administered intravenously as an infusion of magnesium sulfate at a dose of 1-2 grams.

            Prior to taking any magnesium for the prevention or treatment of migraines, individuals should discuss its safety with a medical professional. Dosage differences may be warranted for pediatrics and/or among those with more severe magnesium deficits. In all cases, contraindications should be considered and ruled out among those taking other medications and/or with other health conditions .

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              What Is A Supplement

              Riboflavin B2

              Riboflavin plays an important role in cellular energy production in the body. Its role in mitochondrial energy metabolism suggests it may be effective in migraine. From the evidence available it is well tolerated and potentially effective as a preventive treatment for migraine. NICE Clinical Guidelines for managing headache state that riboflavin may be effective in reducing migraine frequency and severity in some people.


              Magnesium plays an important role in a range of biological processes in the body. The evidence available suggests it may be effective as a preventive treatment for migraine. Some people do experience side effects including an upset stomach or diarrhoea.

              Co-enzyme Q10

              Co-enzyme Q10 plays an important role in cellular energy metabolism in the body. The available evidence suggests it may be an effective preventive, but more research would be helpful.

              Co-enzyme Q10150mg/day


              Feverfew is a medicinal herb. There is limited evidence that it may be effective in migraine. From the studies available its not clear what is an effective preparation or dose.

              Other supplements

              There are a range of other supplements that are mentioned as treatments for migraine. These include melatonin, vitamins B6, B9 and B12, vitamin E and vitamin C. At the moment there is a need for more research into whether these have any benefit for migraine.

              Magnesium Supplements For The Treatment Of Cluster Headaches

              Magnesium supplements for the treatment of cluster headaches


              I’ve read quite a few articles on the internet that say people who suffer from cluster headaches and migraines have been found to have very low levels of magnesium in there blood.

              This is from one of those articles, seems quite interesting, thoughts anyone please.

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              Magnesium For Vertigo And Vestibular Migraine That Really Works

              This post may contain affiliate links. Migraine Strong, as an Amazon Affiliate, makes a small percentage from qualified sales made through affiliate links at no cost to you.

              This is an evidence-based article from the authors of Migraine Strong. It includes scientific evidence from studies and peer-reviewed research papers. References to the evidence may be reviewed by clicking the hyperlinked words and/or numbers in parenthesis within the article.

              Medically reviewed by Danielle Aberman, RD

              Vertigo is unpleasant to say the least. True room spinning vertigo is, in my opinion, one the most hideous symptoms someone with vestibular migraine can experience. Imagine turning your head and suddenly feeling and seeing the world violently spinning around you. Like youre seeing the world from the perspective of a childs top spinning on a table. It leaves you feeling helpless as you clumsily feel your way to the bathroom to be sick and wait for it to end. Could a natural supplement like magnesium for vertigo really help to ease this sensation of spinning?

              While Migraine Strong writes about the latest in migraine treatments, this is not medical advice. We are patient educators and all information you read should be discussed with your doctor.

              What Should I Be Cautious Of

              Natural Treatments For Migraines

              Magnesium supplements are relatively safe , but that doesnât mean theyâre for everyone. People with reduced kidney function or certain neurological disorders should not take magnesium without first discussing it with their doctor.

              In addition, magnesium supplements can interfere with your bodyâs ability to absorb some medications, so talk to your doctor before starting if youâre taking any of these medications:

              • antibiotics
              • bisphosphonates, which are used to treat osteoporosis
              • diuretics
              • prescription medications for acid reflux or peptic ulcers

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              Magnesium Pidolate And Brain Penetration

              The dysfunction of the bloodbrain barrier has been described in several neurological disorders, including ischemic stroke and inherited and neurodegenerative diseases . This topic remains controversial: while some studies did not find changes in BBB during a migraine attack , there are studies in human subjects and animals that indicate that BBB permeability may be increased with migraine and headaches . BBB disruption has been associated with magnesium deficiency in the brain . It is therefore interesting to distinguish agents that exert a protective role on BBB and prevent its impairment in response to various challenges. There is evidence that magnesium has a protective role on the BBB in vivo , and a recent paper has highlighted that 10 mmol/L magnesium sulfate reduces the permeability in an in vitro model of the human BBB . This effect could be the result of the antagonism between calcium and magnesium in the endothelial actin cytoskeleton, which remodels intercellular gap formation, thus inhibiting the paracellular movement of molecules through the tight junctions .

              Romeo et al. compared the effect of different magnesium salts at the same concentration in in vitro in models of rat and human BBBs. All salts decreased BBB permeability among them, magnesium pidolate and magnesium threonate were the most efficient in the rat model, and magnesium pidolate was the most efficient in the human model, suggesting differences in response between humans and rodents.

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