What Is The Best Kind Of Magnesium To Take While Pregnant?


As you do your research on this complex mineral, you’ll likely find yourself asking, “what is the best kind of magnesium to take while pregnant?”.

There are quite a few different types of magnesium out there, and some are much better to take while you’re expecting than others.

We’ll start by quickly explaining the different types of magnesium, but first, a quick refresher on why you may need to take magnesium while pregnant.

Why do pregnant women need to take magnesium?

In general, magnesium is an essential mineral. It’s responsible for a myriad of bodily functions, and helps relax our bodies.

It is pretty common for people to experience magnesium deficiency, especially as food quality continues to drop and nutrition becomes poorer.

But, pregnant women are especially susceptible to a magnesium deficiency. While you are pregnant, you are feeding not just yourself, but your growing baby as well.

So, many essential nutrients are siphoned by the fetus. Plus, your changing hormones can contribute to a magnesium deficiency. Some common signs of this include:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Muscle twitching
  • Poor memory
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Weakness
  • Nausea and vomiting

Benefits of magnesium supplementation

Even if you aren’t yet deficient, you may want to supplement with magnesium anyways. There are tons of benefits for expecting women, including:

  • Reduced leg cramps or RLS
  • Preventing osteoporosis
  • Helping with nausea and morning sickness
  • Improves your delivery process
  • Helping manage headaches
  • Positively impacts your child

These are just some of the most prominent benefits of magnesium supplementation. If you want to learn more, check out our complete guide on the benefits of magnesium during pregnancy.

Is it safe to take magnesium while pregnant?

Many expecting mothers wonder whether or not it’s safe to take magnesium while pregnant. The good news is that there is no research suggesting magnesium can adversely affect your or baby!

At worst, you will experience some side effects from excess magnesium, such as:

  •  Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Lethargy
  • Muscle weakness
  • Low blood pressure
  • Urine retention
  • Respiratory distress
  • Cardiac arrest

If you want to learn more about this, you can check out our post on the safety of magnesium during pregnancy. But, you came here to learn what the best kind of magnesium to take while pregnant is. So, without further ado, let’s discuss the different types!

What are the different types of magnesium women take during pregnancy?

There are so many different kinds of magnesium that it can get overwhelming as you do your shopping or research. The big differences between them are the absorption rate and the therapeutic benefits each offers. They also differ in terms of side effects.

We will just focus on the eight most prominent varieties of magnesium commonly used by pregnant women today. Then, we will offer our selection as the best kind of magnesium to take while pregnant.

Magnesium chloride

When you use magnesium supplements, magnesium chloride is usually what you’ll see on the ingredient label. This is the most common kind of magnesium, which is typically extracted from brine or ocean water.

Studies have shown that this variation is the most effective form of oral supplementation, but it works very well topically too. 

Magnesium chloride promotes deep sleep, healthy digestion, bone health, and a calming presence - both mentally and physically. The one main side effect with magnesium chloride is diarrhea. But, this is pretty uncommon unless you go overboard on your dosage.

Magnesium Sulfate

Magnesium sulfate is most known for its presence in Epsom salts. Using magnesium sulfate topically is one of the best ways to combat sore muscles or aches, and can even be used to help with digestive issues.

This type of magnesium is often prescribed to prevent premature birth and decrease uterine tone in those with heightened risk for these two pregnancy complications. In this instance, you should consult your doctor, as they will help come up with a treatment plan.

Magnesium Phosphate

This is a very mild form of magnesium, that does wonders for people with cramps or tightness. It calms the body and mind, while simultaneously contributing to healthier bones and teeth, while keeping the body’s processes in balance with one another.

Magnesium Citrate

As the name suggests, magnesium citrate is derived from citric acid. One of the main advantages magnesium citrate has over other types its bioavailability - meaning its easily absorbed and utilized by the body. Mothers experiencing indigestion and acid reflux/morning sickness will be pleased to learn that magnesium citrate can combat these issues.

But, magnesium citrate also has been shown to act as a strong laxative - good for those with constipation issues, not so good for those just looking for relief from leg cramps during pregnancy! Nonetheless, it is considered safe for both you and your child during pregnancy.

Magnesium Oxide

Magnesium oxide has much lower levels of bioavailability compared to magnesium citrate, but is still commonly used to treat digestion related issues. Magnesium oxide is one of the main compounds found in Milk of Magnesia.

Magnesium Glycinate

For those that are dealing with stress on top of their magnesium deficiency, magnesium glycinate may be the answer. 

This unique type of magnesium mends a stressed mind and body. It has a bioavailability that rivals that of magnesium citrate, and unlike many types of magnesium, is not a known laxative! Magnesium Glycinate is by far the easiest type of mg on the stomach.

Magnesium Orotate

Magnesium orotate is unique from other types of magnesium, because it also organically encourages heart health. On top of this, it can help repair muscle tissues, leading to an increase in stamina and energy. Because magnesium orotate is such a versatile supplement, it tends to be more expensive than other types of magnesium.

Magnesium L-threonate

This variation of magnesium has been considered a “breakthrough” supplement by some. It features high bioavailability, and has the power to improve cognitive functions (huge for those who suffer from mom brain). 

What Is The Best Type Of Magnesium To Take While Pregnant?

The best type of magnesium to take while pregnant is sort of up for debate. There are a few that we know work very well. Most doctors will recommend you take magnesium with a high bioavailability, which narrows it down to a few. These include magnesium chloride, oxide, citrate, and glycinate.

As you now know, different types of magnesium can accomplish different things. So, it depends on what you are hoping to alleviate with magnesium. Of those four, you can narrow down your option based on what ailments you are experiencing.

You cannot go wrong with magnesium chloride

We do know that Magnesium Chloride is one of the best kinds of magnesium you can take while pregnant. It does so many things that improve your pregnancy. 

Most notably, it promotes a deep, restful sleep. Magnesium chloride creates a very calming sense in both your body and your mind, and can be used to combat irritating leg cramps. 

In fact, this is the type of magnesium we use in our 8 sheep Organics Sleepy Body Lotion. This is a magnesium packed lotion that soothes aching muscles and painful cramps, while preparing you for a night of deep, restful sleep.