How is Magnesium Useful in Giving Relief from Constipation?

It is a known fact that constipation is a rather irritating and uncomfortable experience. Many people go through this situation since it is a really common problem. Research has revealed that around 20% of the entire population suffers from this problem at some point in time in their life. Research has been proven with evidence that the problem of constipation is faced mostly by women rather than men. The problem of constipation increases with increase in age. One can also go through constipation with interruption or changes in their daily routine. Magnesium citrate relieves this situation acting as a laxative.

How is Magnesium Useful in Giving Relief from Constipation?

Usage of magnesium can be traced back far in the history when the topic of digestive issues is considered. Magnesium is mostly used for two main therapeutic purposes, one being cleansing the colonic tract and the other as a treatment for constipation. These were specifically done prior to any operation or surgical procedures.

A laxative is a product that is specially designed to relieve the sole problem of bowel movement and constipation. Laxatives come in various forms and they are assembled together with respect to their particular modus operandi.

Under the category of “osmotic laxatives” falls magnesium generally and in particular, magnesium citrate. Magnesium citrate concentrates on drawing water from the entire body to the gut. With the water being present in the gut, it provides lubrication for passage of stool easily by adding moisture to it and over-hydrated waste matter. Besides that, water is also absorbed by the bowel itself so that lesser effort needs to be made for releasing it. The gastrointestinal tract is smoothened by magnesium to help it contract easily and better so that the fecal matter can move through it without any difficulty.

The gut functions are specially enhanced by magnesium in people who are rather deficient in magnesium. Magnesium deficiency can be noticed in a person when he or she suffers from sleeping problems, nervousness, and irritability, anxiety, tired and chronic fatigue.

Scientists have verified that magnesium can be equally effective when compared to polyethylene glycol. This is an extremely popular laxative which is generally preferred by the doctors. With the decrease in the intake of magnesium, the tendency of suffering from constipation increases to a great extent. It may be one of the very causes for triggering constipation in an individual.

In another research, (mostly in aged patients) it has been found out that on comparing other laxatives to magnesium hydroxide, it has proved to be better and more effective than any other bulk-laxatives. This is especially useful in elderly who suffer from chronic constipation.

Scientific research and survey have verified that with the consumption of only 350 mg of magnesium reduces the volume of urine by nearly one-third of the entire fluid. This is because the liquid gets sucked in by the large intestine and is released along with the stool. The supplement works gently without giving rise to a situation of emergency to go to the washroom unless consumed in bulk.

Since dehydration is a major reason for constipation along with many other kinds of prospective health problems, so it is absolutely crucial to figure this method of action. Therefore, before indulging in too much consumption of magnesium citrate to sort the problem of constipation, one needs to stop and think twice. For committing to such a practice one also needs to maintain a regular and voluminous intake of water, this will reduce the chance of suffering from dehydration and let the supplement work effectively and do the job perfectly. It is easily available in all drug stores and no prescriptions are required for purchasing it. Magnesium citrate is also used by medical practitioners for carrying out medical procedures like colonoscopy.

However, if the patient is suffering from something as serious as fecal impaction then it is likely for magnesium to not make a difference. The water that is added along with the strong contractions does not prove to be sufficient to eradicate the impaction. If the patient is suffering from acute constipation but without any intervention of fecal impaction then magnesium definitely serves as the ultimate cure.

Studies have been carried out for determining the appropriate dosage of magnesium citrate. After carrying out the tests, the researchers had reached the conclusion that with the increase in the intake of magnesium citrate the bowel output will also increase.

Magnesium citrate works really fast on softening bowels and gives almost instant results just like any other osmotic laxative. On questioning a lot of people who actually consume magnesium citrate supplements, it was found out that on consumption of 2.4 g to 4.8 g of the product, they experience smooth and effortless bowel movements within a span of 6 hours of intake.

Magnesium helps in acid reflux. Basically, magnesium helps in neutralizing of stomach juices. The digestive juices help the food particles to break down easily. As a result of this, the tendency of constipation decreases. The digestive juices help the waste food particles to separate from the important nutrients that need to be absorbed by the body. These stomach acids help magnesium compounds to break down into magnesium ions which in turn help people who are suffering from hard bowels to experience relief from constipation. All this ends up in keeping the colon clean by removing the bowels with the help of magnesium.

“Milk of Magnesia” which is another name for Magnesium Hydroxide, is generally used in the form of a laxative. This is due to the percentage of the compound that is absorbed in the intestines of the body, which is just 4% and 96% of it travels via the intestines and that too unabsorbed. This results in the laxative effect which helps in easy passage of the bowels through the colon. It is considered as the most effective laxative among all the other compounds that help in easing constipation. A mixture of citric acid and magnesium results in magnesium citrate, which is 20% absorbed by the human body and is milder than Milk of Magnesia. Magnesium Malate and Magnesium Sulphate act as mild laxatives.

Curing Constipation with Magnesium and Checking for Bowel Tolerance – If Intake Of Magnesium Will Relieve Your Constipation Or Not?

Excess of magnesium in the body is definitely not good for health. While magnesium increases the moisture or the water content in the stool, one may suffer from loose stools if it is consumed in excess. Vitamin B, when consumed with 200 mg of magnesium, will prove to be more effective. One needs to be “bowel tolerant” and not experience loose motions, which is only possible if the supplements are taken in proper quantity. Beyond the point of bowel tolerance, one starts to get watery bowels.

However, it is specific for specific individuals. One also needs to find out if magnesium is working as a cure for that particular individual. 400 mg of magnesium needs to be consumed with water before bed. If by the following morning the bowel movement has not come back to its normal state then 400 mg more has to be consumed and wait for 4 hours. Even after this, if one still cannot get rid of constipation then 400 mg more of magnesium is required. This is the benchmark. After this stage, one should understand that magnesium cannot serve as a cure for that individual. If one can restore the bowel movement at a certain point then the dosage needs to be noted down, because that is the effective level of magnesium for an individual.

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Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:May 15, 2018

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