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Does Magnesium Give You Energy? It Can, Here’s How

Magnesium can give you energy by improving your sleep, health issues that impact sleep, and energy production in your body. But more research is needed.
Written by
Jeff Kahn, M.S., Rise Science Co-Founder
Reviewed by
Chester Wu, MD, Rise Science Medical Reviewer
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We bring sleep research out of the lab and into your life. Every post begins with peer-reviewed studies — not third-party sources — to make sure we only share advice that can be defended to a room full of sleep scientists.
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Updated Regularly
We regularly update our articles to explain the latest research and shifts in scientific consensus in a simple and actionable way.
Young woman taking magnesium and looking happy.

Does Magnesium Give You Energy? 

  • Magnesium can give you energy. It plays a critical role in your body’s energy production and magnesium deficiency is linked to fatigue and sleep problems.
  • Taking magnesium supplements may improve your energy and sleep, and it may help with health issues that can affect your sleep, like insomnia, restless leg syndrome, depression, and anxiety. 
  • Magnesium supplements may not be able to give you more energy if you’re not deficient or don’t have a health issue or sleep disorder, though. There’s some research suggesting it may improve athletic performance even when you’re not deficient, but more research is needed.
  • Beyond magnesium deficiency, you may be low on energy because of sleep debt or being out of sync with your body clock. The RISE app can help you improve these to boost your energy, whether you decide to take magnesium or not.

If you’re feeling sluggish and tired, you might be considering a dietary supplement that can boost your energy levels. But is magnesium one of these? 

There’s not enough research to say for sure, but magnesium plays an important role in energy production, so supplementation may boost your energy levels if you’re deficient. 

Below, we cover whether magnesium gives you energy and how you can use the RISE app to fix the common causes of low energy.

Advice From a Sleep Doctor

Advice From a Sleep Doctor

“Getting more magnesium through food or taking a magnesium supplement may give you more energy if you have low magnesium levels,” says Dr. Chester Wu, Rise Science sleep advisor, medical reviewer, and double board-certified doctor in psychiatry and sleep medicine.

“Beyond taking magnesium, prioritize getting enough sleep each night to keep your energy levels as high as possible.”

Does Magnesium Give You Energy? 

Yes, magnesium can give you energy as it plays an essential role in energy production in your body. Hypomagnesemia (low magnesium) is linked to fatigue, sleep problems, and excessive daytime sleepiness. Taking magnesium supplements or eating more foods high in magnesium may improve your energy by addressing deficiencies that cause fatigue as well as improve your sleep, and therefore, your energy. 

Why does magnesium give you energy? There are a few factors at play: 

Magnesium improves energy production and metabolism:

  • ATP activation: Magnesium is vital for the activation of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which stores and provides energy at the cellular level. It binds to ATP molecules, enabling them to function efficiently as an energy source.
  • Energy metabolism efficiency: Animal studies suggest magnesium supplementation may boost the efficiency of energy metabolism (the process of breaking down food and converting it into energy). More human research is needed.

Magnesium helps you get enough sleep:

  • Supplements work by increasing the sleep hormone melatonin and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) — a neurotransmitter that reduces anxiety — decreasing the stress hormone cortisol, and promoting muscle relaxation. Low magnesium is linked to sleep problems and magnesium supplementation may help with sleep disorders like insomnia and restless leg syndrome, helping you get more sleep and energy. We’ve covered when to take magnesium for sleep here. 

Magnesium supports overall health and well-being: 

  • Health symptom relief: Magnesium supplements may improve issues like migraines, depression, anxiety, constipation, hot flashes, muscle cramps and leg cramps, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis, menopause, and PMS symptoms. Getting relief from symptoms related to medical conditions could help you get more sleep at night and feel less drained during the day.
  • Regulatory role in bodily functions: Magnesium is crucial for more than 300 enzymatic processes, including protein synthesis, nerve function, muscle contractions, glucose and insulin regulation, and cardiovascular health. It also helps transport essential minerals like calcium and potassium into cells, supporting bone, heart, and overall health.

The benefits of magnesium extend beyond your sleep and energy. Getting enough magnesium — from food sources or supplements — can help you feel and function your best.

Learn more about how low magnesium can make you tired here. 

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Does Magnesium Give You Energy or Make You Tired? 

Confusingly, magnesium can both give you energy and make you tired. 


  • Magnesium can boost your energy through metabolic support: A magnesium deficiency can lead to fatigue because magnesium is essential for ATP production—the primary energy molecule in the body—and supports over 300 enzymatic reactions, including those vital for muscle and nerve function. So, taking magnesium supplements to improve your magnesium levels can give you energy.
  • Magnesium can promote relaxation and sleep: Magnesium can reduce anxiety, increase melatonin, and relax your muscles. These effects do not directly cause tiredness but prepare your body for restful sleep. This could lead to more sleep that night and more energy the next day.
  • Excess magnesium intake can cause tiredness and lethargy: Taking too much magnesium can lead to gastrointestinal side effects — like nausea, abdominal cramps, and diarrhea — which disrupt your sleep and make you tired. And taking very high doses — typically more than 5,000 mg of magnesium — may cause magnesium toxicity, which can cause lethargy. 

Heads-up: Tiredness is when you feel fatigued and drained, but you can’t necessarily fall asleep and sleep might not give you more energy. Sleepiness is when your eyes are heavy and you’re ready for sleep. Magnesium may make you feel sleepy before bed, but it shouldn’t make you sleepy during the day.

We’ve covered more on whether magnesium can make you tired the next day here.

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Is Magnesium Good for Low Energy? 

Magnesium can be good for low energy. If you have low levels of magnesium — nearly 50% of Americans don’t get enough of the mineral from food — eating more foods high in magnesium or taking magnesium supplements may improve your energy levels. 

If you have a certain condition that magnesium supplements can help — like depression, night sweats, or restless leg syndrome — supplements may help you get more sleep and feel more energized during the day. 

More research is needed, but the studies we have so far are promising: 

  • A 2011 study on women with breast cancer and hot flashes found magnesium supplements led to a reduction in hot flashes, sweating, and fatigue. It’s unclear if participants had low magnesium levels to begin with, though.
  • A 2020 review found magnesium supplements could be beneficial for those with chronic fatigue syndrome and a magnesium deficiency, but studies are mixed. 
  • A 2023 systematic review and meta-analysis found taking magnesium supplements led to an improvement in depression. Depression is linked to sleep problems and feeling unmotivated and mentally exhausted during the day, so improving it could improve your energy via your sleep and your mood. 

Magnesium supplements may also help you feel more energy when exercising. A 2014 study found magnesium supplements decreased lactate production, which can contribute to fatigue when working out. With supplements, participants performed better in physical tests and this was found in those who weren’t deficient in magnesium. 

It’s unclear if magnesium could boost your energy levels if you don’t have a deficiency or health issue, or outside of exercise. Many magnesium studies are often small, low quality, done on specific populations (like older adults), use different types and amounts of magnesium, and have conflicting findings. 

Plus, it’s unclear if magnesium from food would have the same health benefits as magnesium supplements in these cases.

A 2018 study didn’t find a link between the amount of magnesium you consume from food and feeling sleepy during the day. However, it did note that women who consumed a high daily intake of dietary magnesium were less likely to actually fall asleep during the day.

Heads-up: Two of the most common causes of low energy are sleep debt (how much sleep you owe your body) and being out of sync with your circadian rhythm (your internal body clock). 

These factors could be affecting your energy levels alongside a magnesium deficiency or other issue. But improving them is a great place to start on your road to feeling better.

You can lower your sleep debt by: 

  • Taking naps
  • Going to bed a little earlier
  • Sleeping in a little later
  • Improving your sleep hygiene (the habits that help you fall and stay asleep)

You can get in sync with your circadian rhythm by: 

RISE can guide you through it all. The app can work out how much sleep debt you have, predict your circadian rhythm each day to help you sync up with it, and tell you the best time to do 20+ daily sleep hygiene habits. 

Looking into sleep supplements? We’ve compared magnesium vs. melatonin here. 

RISE app screenshot showing how much sleep debt you have
RISE can calculate how much sleep debt you have.

RISE users on iOS 1.202 and above can view their sleep debt here, see their circadian rhythm on the Energy screen here, and set up their 20+ in-app habit notifications here

Which Magnesium Is Best for Energy?

There’s no one best type of magnesium for energy. Dr. Wu usually recommends 400 to 500 mg of magnesium oxide, 250 to 500 mg of magnesium citrate, or 200 to 400 mg of magnesium glycinate to his patients with sleep problems. 

The best type for you may depend on why you’re taking it — e.g. to improve insomnia or depression — or on whether you’ve got a magnesium deficiency or not. Speak to a healthcare professional to find if you should be taking one type of magnesium over another. 

That said, magnesium glycinate may be easier for your body to absorb, and magnesium aspartate, magnesium citrate, magnesium lactate, and magnesium chloride are absorbed more completely and are more bioavailable (a larger amount reaches your circulation) than magnesium oxide and magnesium sulfate. It’s unclear if this makes them more effective at improving your energy, though.

Types of magnesium include:

  • Magnesium glycinate
  • Magnesium aspartate 
  • Magnesium citrate
  • Magnesium lactate
  • Magnesium chloride
  • Magnesium oxide
  • Magnesium sulfate
  • Magnesium L-threonate

More research is needed, but the best type of magnesium for energy may be the kind you can get from food.

Eating a healthy balanced diet can help. Magnesium-rich foods include: 

  • Green leafy vegetables like spinach 
  • Legumes like lentils, black beans, and edamame 
  • Nuts like cashews and almonds 
  • Seeds like pumpkin seeds and chia seeds  
  • Whole grains
  • Fortified breakfast cereals 

Expert tip: If you decide on supplements, use RISE’s wind-down reminder to remember to take them. You’ll get a notification on your phone, iPad, and Apple Watch when it’s time to start your wind-down routine, which can include taking magnesium.

RISE app screenshot reminding you of your evening wind down routine
RISE can help you remember to take magnesium.

How Long Does Magnesium Take to Work for Energy? 

It’s unclear how long it takes magnesium to work for energy. Dr. Wu says you may notice immediate changes, but you should continue taking magnesium for up to two to three months before you discontinue it if it’s not working for you. Your healthcare provider should be able to tell you when you can expect changes in your energy levels. 

How long it takes to feel the effects of magnesium may depend on: 

  • How much magnesium you’re taking
  • Which type of magnesium you’re taking
  • Whether you have a magnesium deficiency (and how severe this is)
  • How your body reacts to magnesium 
  • Whether you have a health condition or something else affecting your energy 

Studies on magnesium and energy are usually short term and they don’t focus on how long it takes for the supplement to work. 

For example, in both studies we mentioned earlier — the 2011 study on women with breast cancer and the 2014 study on exercise performance — participants took magnesium for four weeks. But their fatigue and performance may have improved before this point.   

The same goes for sleep. Studies on magnesium and sleep show benefits after two weeks to three months, so it’s unclear when magnesium started working to improve sleep and when this could translate into higher energy levels.

If you’re getting more magnesium from food, it’s also unclear how long it would take the nutrient to improve your energy. 

Heads-up: If you’re not getting enough sleep, magnesium may not improve your energy at all. Most of us don’t know how much sleep we need, however, and it may be more than you think. Among 1.95 million RISE users aged 24 and over, 48% need eight hours of sleep or more. 

RISE can tell you how much sleep you individually need.

The RISE app can tell you how much sleep you need
How much sleep RISE users need.

RISE users on iOS 1.202 and above can view their sleep need here.

Magnesium and Energy Are Linked  

Magnesium is an essential mineral needed for many jobs in your body — including energy production. 

When you’re low on magnesium, you might feel fatigued and have trouble sleeping. So, increasing your intake of magnesium through food or supplements may boost your energy levels. Magnesium can also improve certain sleep and health issues, which could lead to more energy.  

Lowering your sleep debt and getting in sync with your circadian rhythm can help increase your energy — whether you’re deficient in magnesium or not. 

RISE can work out how much sleep you need, whether you have any sleep debt, and predict your circadian rhythm each day, so you can get in sync. 

Users report more energy from using RISE:

“I’ve tried a few other sleep apps, but this one doesn’t just track your sleep, it helps you improve your sleep! And it’s very accurate. After a few days, I felt rested, energized, and refreshed and didn’t need an energy drink to get going.” Read the review

Your energy levels could pick up fast — 80% of RISE users feel more energy within five days. 


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