Magnesium, yet again, sorry!

Saw the registrar to my EP today and I asked him whether I should take magnesium supplements. His answer was fairly obvious which was that I didn't need to take magnesium unless I was deficient. He said to ask my GP to do a blood test, then take it from there.

Now I remember something funny about testing for mag levels in your blood. So how do you go about testing for it?

Thank you and sorry to be a pain :-(


20 Replies

  • Thanks bigleg, I'll follow through on that, see what my GP says.

    Koll :-)

  • Yes, I agree bigleg. I saw my London Alternative practitioner yesterday and I am to be retested for Mg using the Red Cell Magnesium test with Biolab. Also checking my CoQ10 level at the same time.

    My original test was done back in August 2014 as a base line and after taking supplements for 9 months hoping to see some improvements! GP not very helpful so I get the blood taken at our local hospital and they charge me £25.

  • Could I ask you please for the name of you alternative practioner in London?


  • Thank you.

  • Orchardworker, Did you just go the hospital and ask them to take blood, or get a referral? Or was it private?


  • I rang the NHS hospital first to find out the cost and they said just turn up and invoiced me for £25. I turned up gave them the package I received from Biolab by post and they sent it back to Biolab. Biolab then send the results via my Alternative Practitioner.

  • Hi can I ask what type of mag you take and how much. Thanks

  • Hi Rocheen, I started by taking 1tsp of Nutri Ultra Muscleze (this is Mag but is a compound with other stuff useful for AF) per day and increased it steadily to the current one and a half tsp per day.

    However after 9 months my Red Cell Mg test (not the test your GP will do if pushed, which is also on blood but nearly always shows as OK) had actually gone down - this could be due to the Flecainide leaching it or maybe my body not absorbing Mag from food and supplements as it should.

    I am therefore now taking additional Mag - 150 gms of Mag Citrate from Klaire Labs.

    Incidentally, as with food sources I think it is as important to get your supplements from the best places as the supplement itself; that is why I consult an experienced Alternative Practitioner for these things...expensive but if you are going to do it do it right.

    Good Luck.

  • I regret have found my GP seems to reactive in a negative way when asking for various tests saying my annual MOT in autumn covers everything...which I doubt.

  • Hmmmm, maybe time to find a more empathetic GP. My present model is rather the same...suggest anything that isn't totally pharmaceutical and he adopts this irritating pitying look! Wish the older model hadn't retired!! I think that some doctors are surprised when they come across well-informed or at least curious patients.

  • Having been disappointed several times by the way my GP practice (and no doubt many others) is tied by either lack of interest, practice profitability or NHS constraints, I frequently bypass them and pay privately.....I back my own judgement and appreciate a rapid response but I do double check any actual supplements prescribed with my GP/cardiologist after I have started just in case and to keep my notes up to date!

  • I think some doctors are shocked if you sound informed... I hadn't thought about being tested but I remember someone saying that if you had sufficient magnesium then taking more would just make you have the 'runs', not great I guess but a practical way to find out...


  • I wish it was as simple as just getting some Mg from Holland & Barrrett but as noted here and elsewhere there are many different forms of Mg compounds.

    In the end I am relying on my Alternative Practitioner (who treats many AFers but of course could also be wrong) and take Nutri Muscleze which is Magnesium (bisglycinate & malate) plus a lot of other relevant stuff in one powder.

  • Thanks Orchardworker...

  • I think if you sound informed they think you are a challenge GP once told me a little knowledge is a dangerous think ....but if you cannot due to time constraints discuss your probs or fears what are you supposed to do?

  • "I think if you sound informed they think you are a challenge GP once told me a little knowledge is a dangerous thing"

    Haha......Well that's mosts GP's with regards to AF :-)

  • Whilst I'm not medically trained I did research my own condition and I think it helps when you have meetings with GPs and EPs to be able to ask the right questions.

    On the original magnesium issue, you're not going to overdose on it providing you keep to the numbers on the box so why not just try it and see if it works. It didn't for me so after a few drugs failed I went for the ablation which, touch wood, has worked perfectly to date.

  • I actually don't think I'll be short of magnesium simply because of water supply and diet. But, I'd still like to know for sure. I doubt that it would take away my arrhythmia because it is so pronounced, but I guess that if I am deficient then taking in more mag in some form may help, and every bit of help has to be a good thing.

    I'm a bit wary of taking mag unnecessarily even with the comments about it. I know from my farming background that it is very funny stuff, unique in fact. If you get too much in the soil, good you may think, it can be bad because it locks itself up and nothing else does that. So there's loads of mag but it will not get through the plants and into the animals. Hence, I'd prefer just the right amount, not overdose until my digestive system rejects it.


  • I think it is important to get out of the mindset of the magic bullet and accept it's going to take a long time to build trust in advisers and what they suggest (i.e. double check elsewhere and introduce supplements very slowly). I have done this over 12 months and haven't regretted it.

    Good Luck.

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