If you're one of the millions of people in the UK dealing with anxiety, you may be looking for a natural way to find relief. Magnesium taurate is a food supplement that's often touted for its ability to reduce anxiety and promote calmness. But does it really work? Let's take a closer look at the science behind magnesium taurate to see if it lives up to the hype.
What Is Magnesium Taurate?
Magnesium taurate is a compound made up of magnesium and the amino acid taurine. Magnesium is a natural mineral that's involved in hundreds of biochemical reactions in the body, including muscle contraction, nerve function, blood sugar regulation, and blood pressure control. Taurine is an amino acid that plays a role in cardiovascular health and nervous system function.
It's theorised that taurine helps magnesium enter the brain more effectively and could partly explain the high potential for magnesium taurate as a anxiety-supporting compound.
How Does Magnesium Taurate Support Anxiety?
Magnesium plays a role in biochemical reactions involving neurotransmitters like serotonin. Serotonin is a chemical that helps regulate mood and emotional balance. Low levels of serotonin have been linked to depression and anxiety. Because magnesium helps regulate serotonin levels, it stands to reason that magnesium supplementation could help relieve anxiety.
In addition to its role in regulating neurotransmitter levels, magnesium also helps to reduce stress hormones like cortisol. Cortisol is often referred to as the "stress hormone" because it's released in response to stress. High levels of cortisol have been linked to anxiety, so by reducing cortisol levels, magnesium can help to reduce anxiety.
Taurine also plays a key role in regulating a neurotransmitter called GABA (γ-Aminobutyric acid). GABA has a primary function of reducing excitability of the nervous system and low levels have been associated with anxiety disorders (1). Taurine can potentially help to normalise GABA levels by binding to GABA receptors as shown in the diagram below (2).
What Does the Research Say?
There are some studies which suggest magnesium and taurine may help with anxiety but further research is needed (3, 4). Anecdotally many user experience improvements in anxiety and sleep but scientific research is required to confirm these effects. Regardless, magnesium taurate is a safe and effective compound and is therefore a low-risk product to trial.
If deficient in magnesium it can take up to 40 weeks to fully replenish levels so it's important to be patient when considering magnesium supplementation (5).
While research on magnesium taurate is limited, there is some evidence to suggest that magnesium and taurine may help to relieve symptoms of anxiety. If you'd like to learn more about magnesium taurate click here.
1. Anxiety disorders and GABA neurotransmission: a disturbance of modulation. Neuropsychiatr Dis Treat. 2015; 11: 165–175.
2. Taurine Supplementation as a Neuroprotective Strategy upon Brain Dysfunction in Metabolic Syndrome and Diabetes. Nutrients 2022, 14(6), 1292.
3. The effects of magnesium supplementation on subjective anxiety. Magnesium Research. 2016 Mar 1;29(3):120-125.
4. Taurine Partially Improves Abnormal Anxiety in Taurine-Deficient Mice. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2019;1155:905-921.
5. Chronic magnesium deficiency and human disease; time for reappraisal? QJM: An International Journal of Medicine, 111 (11), November 2018, Pages 759–763.