Green Living

The Magic of Magnesium

Do you take a magnesium supplement, or have you ever heard about the benefits of taking one?

Some symptoms of magnesium deficiencies include cramping, fatigue, anxiety and depression, migraines, impaired memory, and irregular heart beat.

I have had the  Ancient Minerals lotion and gel on my night stand for a couple of months, after hearing some rave reviews from friends. I didn’t follow the directions and instead just rubbed it on when I remembered (or my Higher Self gently nudged to me that I needed it). I also gave my daughter Penelope several massages with the lotion. The biggest things I noticed from using the product is that I fell asleep faster and that my period cramping became much less severe (sometimes period cramping can be a sign of magnesium deficiency). I am not really a fan of the intitial tingling that you feel when you first rub it on, but I am a huge fan of the results of way less cramping!

Even if you consume a diet rich in magnesium, living a stressed out life, eating sugar and other processed foods, getting too much calcium, or simply drinking water that has been stripped of minerals can contribute to deficiencies. Many medications such as antibiotics, birth control pills, diuretics, and steroids will also deplete magnesium from the body. Not to mention, if you have poor diegestion, you won’t be able to pull up any nutrients or minerals even if you are putting them in your body!

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Little Miss P photo bombing my product photo shoot!

If you are not a huge pill taker or have poor digestion, good news! Transdermal application (rubbing it on your skin like any other lotion) of magnesium is actually the most efficient way for the body to uptake magnesium! For centuries humans would bathe in and drink mineral rich waters, but as we have turned to modern filtration systems, (which has saved lives) unfortunately, we now see the downside of mineral deficiencies.

Ancient Minerals has several different types of magnesium oil products to assist with absorption through the skin. While taking oral forms can sometimes lead to bowel intolerance (diarrhea), your body can absorb every bit that it needs through the skin and nothing more – no overdosing!

Another great part of transdermal magnesium is that by applying the oil directly onto the skin, it can vastly improve the quality of your skin by reducing inflammation and increasing hydration. It even helps with skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis.

While epsom salts are frequently recommended for detox and magnesium supplmentation, the magnesium sulfate that makes up epsom salts has very low absorption into the skin. Magnesium chloride, the kind you find in the oil, is a completely natural salt taken directly from mineral rich oceans.

How much do you need? That’s a tough question to answer. Ancient Minerals has a great guide for usage of each product they sell and attempts to answer the dosage question as plainly as possible.

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  • Haley @ Carrots for Michaelmas
    February 19, 2013 at 2:12 PM

    I need to start on some magnesium! Especially since I’ve had such awful morning sickness this pregnancy and that can be caused by a magnesium deficiency.

    • Stephanie
      February 19, 2013 at 2:51 PM

      Yes you do!!

  • Ashley
    February 19, 2013 at 2:49 PM

    I used a magnesium spray during my third pregnancy bc I found that I was deficient. My first two pregnancies ended with preemies and me with preclampsia. I just delivered our third child via a VBA2C on her due date. The first two were tiny, but my last was over 8 pounds! There really is something to it (magnesium)!

    • Stephanie
      February 19, 2013 at 2:51 PM


  • Kimberly
    February 19, 2013 at 4:10 PM

    Thanks for the info, I would never have thought to try transdermal application of magnesium! I am definitely going to check out their website.

    One nit-pick, though: I just wanted to point out that BOTH magnesium sulfate and magnesium chloride are inorganic salts- it’s the magnesium part that defines it as inorganic, not whatever it is paired with. Just don’t want anyone to get an impression that having an inorganic salt would be a bad thing (actually, ALL salts are by definition inorganic)! I have a degree in inorganic chemistry, so I can’t help myself when I see buzzwords being miss-applied.

    • Cassandra
      February 20, 2013 at 1:32 AM

      Good catch! It was unintentional and I will remove the “buzz word” to prevent confusion. Thanks for the comment!

  • Heidi
    February 19, 2013 at 10:19 PM

    Thank you so much for this post!!

  • Vita @ Juicer Depot
    February 19, 2013 at 10:33 PM

    I didn’t know that magnesium could be rubbed into the skin. I will have to try it especially if it makes you sleep better at night.

    • Stephanie
      February 20, 2013 at 1:27 AM

      Def give it a try!

  • Kelly
    February 20, 2013 at 1:16 PM

    Interesting! One of my best friends just recommended that I start taking magnesium citrate or chelate for my horrible period cramps. I was thinking about asking my midwife for a painkiller – this sounds like a much better option!

    • Stephanie
      February 20, 2013 at 3:47 PM

      Yes! Much better than a pain killer!

  • Mama Bird
    February 20, 2013 at 6:09 PM

    I get horrible insomnia (and my girls do), and forget to use this regularly. We used to do a combo of bath salts and the oil, and did notice the difference when we used it regularly.

    To add, I saw either on wellness mama or mommypotamus (forget which… maybe both!), that magnesium deficiency can be associated with morning sickness, but it’s difficult to raise your levels once your actually pregnant. I’m very deficient and had HORRIBLE morning sickness with both, so I’m really curious if this would really help!

  • Lindsay
    February 25, 2013 at 4:15 AM

    Do you have a preference of the lotion vs. oil? And for the cramping do you rub it into your belly, or will applying it anywhere be equally effective? Thanks!!!

    • Stephanie
      February 26, 2013 at 2:17 PM

      I prefer the lotion. I have a little bit of texture issues and the oils is just a bit too greasy for me and technically you are supossed to wipe the oil off. Since I use it at night before bed, I prefer to use the lotion that I can just keep on. I actually do massage my abdomen now that I have learned the Mayan Abdonminal Massage technique, but previously, I was putting the lotion on my legs and I still got the benefit. Once it gets into your blood stream it takes about one minute for your blood stream to circulate your entire body, twice!

      • jamie burgos
        January 16, 2015 at 9:44 AM

        the lotion is safe to use during pregnance/breastfeeding? im 6 mo preg and get terrible migraines- they are preexisting

        • Stephanie
          January 16, 2015 at 3:26 PM

          Yes! You need the mag more than ever when you are pregnant because some of the pregnancy hormones make it hard for the body to absorb it!

  • Mel
    February 27, 2014 at 1:37 AM

    Hello, can I use the oil on my 13 month old’s feet? I have the spray, so how much would I use? Thanks. I need her to sleep!

    • Stephanie
      February 27, 2014 at 2:38 PM

      Yes, that would be fine. Just use enough for her size feet.

  • Lori Ruhe
    June 28, 2015 at 11:56 AM

    Could small amount of mag oil be safely used on the feet of a 3 mon old?

    • Stephanie
      July 1, 2015 at 9:54 AM

      I don’t see why not. If I had known about it when Penelope was a baby, I would have used it during infant massage for sure. I would have used a very small amount and then watched for reactions (particulary bowel movements, because the mag is so great at moving food through the intenstines.) Of course this is not medical advice, simply sharing what I would do with my own child, be sure to get your doctors recommendation first. 🙂

  • Anne
    August 9, 2016 at 11:00 AM

    Where do i purchase it from. I need it for my 4 year old and 10 month who still do not sleep throughout the night.

    • Stephanie
      August 9, 2016 at 12:20 PM


      • Anne
        August 9, 2016 at 12:41 PM

        Thank you. So i guess its safe to use on my 10month old and 4 year old?