The Difference Between Magnesium & Magnesium Trisilicate

Magnesium is a mineral that facilitates energy production and regulates calcium, which makes it a vital mineral for your heart, muscles and kidneys. Low magnesium levels cause agitation, anxiety and sleeping problems. Magnesium trisilicate is a magnesium compound that has been used as an antacid because it helps alleviate problems caused by stomach acid, according to health information website 4. The two substances differ in various ways, such as potential interactions and side effects.


One way that magnesium differs from magnesium trisilicate is in use 4. Magnesium supplements are typically used to alleviate magnesium deficiency and hypertension, the University of Maryland Medical Center notes 5. Magnesium is also useful in alleviating arrhythmia and maintaining heart health. Magnesium works with calcium and vitamin D to help prevent osteoporosis. In contrast, magnesium trisilicate is commonly used in treating heartburn, indigestion and stomach upset, explains 14.

Dosing and Proper Use

Magnesium supplements typically vary in dose depending on age and gender. Adult and teenage males typically need between 270 mg to 400 mg daily, notes. Adult and teenage females need about 280 mg to 300 mg daily. Magnesium dosage also varies according to use as determined by your doctor. Magnesium tablets are not meant to be chewed or sucked on. This is noticeably different from magnesium trisilicate tablets that are specifically designed to be chewable, notes 14. Magnesium trisilicates are taken with or without food but must be taken two hours before or after beta-blocker medications to avoid adverse interactions. Magnesium trisilicate is typically only taken when needed; magnesium supplements, on the other hand, are taken daily to supplement your body’s magnesium needs 4.

Side Effects

Both substances share side effects such as nausea and diarrhea. However, magnesium overdose causes your blood pressure to drop and severely lowers your heart rate, the University of Maryland Medical Center notes 5. Other side effects associated with magnesium are confusion, calcium deficiency and coma. Magnesium trisilicate typically causes side effects such as constipation and appetite loss 4.

Potential Interaction

Magnesium and magnesium trisilicate should not be used with anticoagulant medications like warfarin and quinidine due to adverse interactions with these medications 4. Magnesium supplements impair the absorption of antibiotics like tetracycline and nitrofurantoin, the University of Maryland Medical Center notes 5. Magnesium also elevates the risk of adverse effects from blood pressure medication such as dizziness and nausea. Magnesium trisilicate should not be taken with angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, notes 14. Always consult your doctor before taking any medication or supplement to avoid potential adverse effects and interactions.