What Is the Difference Between Magnesium Glycinate and Magnesium Gluconate?

Magnesium glycinate and magnesium gluconate are magnesium salts of an organic acid and magnesium. Both can be used to provide magnesium in the diet.


Magnesium glycinate is composed of magnesium, a common metal, and glycine, a primary amino acid. Magnesium gluconate is composed of magnesium and gluconic acid, a common biological chemical.


You should consult your physician before taking magnesium supplements. There are numerous special cases in which magnesium can be harmful instead of beneficial. Also, an excess of magnesium in the diet can cause diarrhea, and in the long term, kidney damage.


Magnesium helps maintain healthy muscle function, normal blood pressure and it is involved in numerous enzymatic functions.

Magnesium and Diabetics

Low magnesium levels often occur in diabetics from excessive urination and low blood glucose levels. Magnesium glycinate is a better option for stabilizing magnesium levels in diabetics as gluconate is processed through the same pathways as glucose.


There is the possibility of allergic reactions from taking magnesium gluconate. These reactions often occur from one of the support materials in the supplement, rather than from magnesium gluconate itself. Magnesium glycinate can have this same effect.