Magnesium threonate, or magnesium L-threonateTrusted Source, is a synthesized form of magnesium. Chemically, it is a salt that forms when a manufacturer combines magnesium with threonic acid. This acid is a product of the metabolic breakdown of vitamin C.
The body can easily absorb magnesium threonate. Some animal studiesTrusted Source have found that magnesium threonate is more effective at increasing magnesium ions in the brain and improving cognitive function than magnesium sulfate. Therefore, doctors may recommend magnesium L-threonate to normalize an individual’s magnesium levels and for potential benefits to the brain.
What are the benefits of magnesium L-threonate?
If supporting brain performance is important to you, you may want to consider taking magnesium L-threonate. Not only has it been shown to increase circulating levels of magnesium in the brain, which helps protect the brain against age-related cognitive decline; it also boosts three other aspects of cognitive health:
- Improves short-and long-term memory—A clinical study published in Neuron journal showed that increasing magnesium levels in the brain by using magnesium L-threonate could improve learning and memory.
- Supports normal stimulation of brain cells—Your brain cells “talk” to one another via neurotransmitters, chemical messengers that relay information to and from the brain, allowing you to make sense of the world around you. Healthy levels of magnesium help promote this neuron-to-neuron communication by maintaining the stimulation of brain cell receptors associated with brain development, memory, and learning. Maintaining normal stimulation of neurons is crucial for supporting mood, memory and healthy cognitive function.
- Formation of new brain cells and synapses—Getting enough magnesium helps your brain maintain and form healthy brain cells and synapses. This keeps your brain function youthful
As magnesium L-threonate can readily elevate magnesium levels in the brain, it has the potential to improve cognitive function. However, research is still in the early stages and mainly involves animal models.
For example, a 2020 studyTrusted Source on zebrafish found that magnesium threonate helps protect against brain cell death and preserve cognitive function.
Similarly, a 2019 studyTrusted Source using a mouse model of Parkinson’s disease found that magnesium threonate successfully elevated magnesium in cerebrospinal fluid and protected against motor deficits and dopamine neuron loss.
Magnesium threonate could have benefitsTrusted Source for memory and nerve pain.
Why do we need magnesium in the body?
Magnesium is a mineral that is abundantTrusted Source in the body and many foods. Magnesium is crucial for bodily processes and is involved in over 300 enzyme reactions. It is essential for:
- protein synthesis
- brain function
- muscle and nerve function
- blood sugar control
- blood pressure regulation
- energy production
- glycolysis, the breakdown of glucose to produce energy
- DNA synthesis
- bone development
- calcium and potassium transport
Magnesium L-threonate: powder vs capsule
- The old-fashioned way
You can dissolve it in water or your favorite healthy drink.
Now you know the brain-boosting powers of magnesium and why magnesium L-threonate is great at supporting circulating magnesium levels—particularly in the brain— but what if you’re not too keen on adding more capsules to your morning routine?
You can always opt to take magnesium L-threonate in powder form, which will give you the same benefits. How should you mix the powder? You have two options:
- Smoothie goodness
If you’re a smoothie lover, you can make it more nutrient-rich by adding a scoop of magnesium L-threonate to your protein smoothie and sprinkle some cinnamon for a dash of antioxidants.
Currently, no recommended daily allowance exists for magnesium L-threonate. However, many companies sell magnesium L-threonate supplements providing around 1500–2000 mg per dose.
Magnesium intake recommendationsTrusted Source vary. The recommended dietary allowances (RDAs) for males and females over 31 years old are 420 mg and 320 mg, respectively.
However, according to manufacturers, 2000 mg of magnesium L-threonate contains only 144 mg of elemental magnesium.