Magnesium Toxicity

Magnesium Toxicity: Overview

Dietary magnesium very rarely poses a health risk, but very high doses of magnesium supplements, which may be added to laxatives for example, can promote adverse effects such as diarrhea.  The kidneys are efficient at excreting excess magnesium and it is unlikely that the mineral will accumulate to toxic levels. The Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences has established a tolerable upper intake level (UL) for supplementary magnesium for adolescents and adults at 350mg daily.

Complications

As intake increases above the UL, the risk of adverse effects increases.  In extreme cases, this can mean coma or even death.

Magnesium Toxicity

Information On This Page

Signs, symptoms & indicators of Magnesium Toxicity:

Lab Values - Common

Low systolic blood pressure may be a sign or symptom of Magnesium ToxicityLow systolic blood pressure
Extremely low blood pressure is a sign of possible magnesium overload.

Symptoms - Bowel Movements

Symptoms - Cardiovascular

Symptoms - Food - General

Symptoms - Gas-Int - General

Symptoms - Mind - General

Symptoms - Muscular

Specific/severe muscle weakness may be a sign or symptom of Magnesium ToxicitySpecific/severe muscle weakness
Magnesium overload can depress the central nervous system, causing muscle weakness, lethargy, sleepiness, hyperexcitability, mental status changes, nausea, appetite loss, extremely low blood pressure, and irregular heartbeat.

Symptoms - Respiratory

Symptoms - Sleep

Drowsiness may be a sign or symptom of Magnesium ToxicityDrowsiness
Sleepiness is a sign of magnesium overload.

Conditions that suggest Magnesium Toxicity:

Metabolic

Hypersomnolence may suggest Magnesium ToxicityHypersomnolence
The symptoms of magnesium toxicity include central nervous system depression, muscle weakness, fatigue and sleepiness.

Musculo-Skeletal

Nutrients

Calcium Requirement often suggests Magnesium ToxicityCalcium Requirement
Calcium and magnesium levels need to be maintained in balance since they have an antagonistic relationship.  An excess of one implies a need for the other to maintain balance.

Risk factors for Magnesium Toxicity:

Organ Health

Chronic Renal Insufficiency may increase risk of Magnesium ToxicityChronic Renal Insufficiency
High levels of magnesium can develop in patients with kidney failure and in elderly people whose kidney functions are reduced.  This is especially true when supplementing with magnesium.  Kidney disease, rather than diet, is the usual cause of magnesium overload, because the kidneys lose the ability to remove excess magnesium.

Supplements and Medications

Daily osmotic laxative use may increase risk of Magnesium ToxicityRegular/excessive/daily osmotic laxative use
Very large doses of laxatives have been associated with magnesium toxicity, even with normal kidney function.
Magnesium-based antacid use may increase risk of Magnesium ToxicityMagnesium-based antacid use
Magnesium toxicity can come as a result of taking magnesium-containing laxatives and antacids.

Magnesium Toxicity can lead to:

Musculo-Skeletal

Magnesium Toxicity could instead be:

Mental

Recommendations for Magnesium Toxicity:

Mineral

Not recommended:

KEY

Weak or unproven link: may be a sign or symptom of; may suggest; may increase risk of; is very occasionally misdiagnosed as
Weak or unproven link:
may be a sign or symptom of; may suggest; may increase risk of; is very occasionally misdiagnosed as
Strong or generally accepted link: often suggests
Strong or generally accepted link:
often suggests
Definite or direct link: usually leads to
Definite or direct link:
usually leads to
Should be avoided: is NOT recommended for
Should be avoided:
is NOT recommended for