Calcium and Magnesium Supplements – What You Need to Know

Happy woman with bottle of Nava CAL MAG PLUS to illustrate calcium and magnesium supplements
Medically Reviewed
March 11, 2024

Lack of specific vitamins and hormones can cause imbalances and diseases in your body. But minerals like calcium and magnesium are also essential to maintain your overall health. Are you consuming the recommended dose of this dynamic duo of minerals? Do you know how to identify calcium-magnesium deficiency in your body? Or what are their primary sources – including foods and calcium-magnesium supplements?

This ultimate guide on taking a calcium-magnesium supplement will show you why, when, and how to take them to achieve optimal health. Read on.

Table of Contents

The Dynamic Duo: Calcium-Magnesium in the Body

What Happens When Your Body’s Calcium-Magnesium Levels Are Low?

Signs and Symptoms of Calcium Deficiency (Hypocalcemia) and Magnesium Deficiency (Hypomagnesemia)

How Do You Ensure an Adequate Calcium-Magnesium Intake for Optimal Health?

Benefits of a Calcium-Magnesium Supplement

Who Should Take Calcium-Magnesium Tablets?

Can You Take Calcium and Magnesium Together?

Choosing Your Calcium-Magnesium Supplement


The Dynamic Duo: Calcium-Magnesium in the Body

Calcium and magnesium are pillars for optimal health, as they’re essential for the proper functioning of countless biological processes within your body.

From your bones to your blood, the duo calcium-magnesium works synergistically to support various physiological functions, including bone health, muscle function, nerve transmission, and cardiovascular health.

So, let’s examine these essential minerals.

The Role of Calcium

Calcium tablets arranged to spell the chemical abbreviation Ca – to illustrate calcium supplements

Calcium is renowned for its important role in maintaining the structural integrity of teeth and healthy bones.

Nearly 99% of your body’s calcium is stored in the skeletal system, providing the strength and support crucial for both activities like standing and complex athletic performances.

But beyond promoting healthy bones, calcium supports many other physiological functions, like muscle contraction, nerve transmission, blood clotting, and cell signaling, underscoring its indispensability for overall health and vitality.

The Role of Magnesium

magnesium tablets arranged to show the chemical sign Mg to illustrate magnesium supplementation

Meanwhile, magnesium quietly asserts its importance as a co-star, no less essential than calcium. It’s one of the most important minerals for optimal health, participating in over 300 enzymatic reactions – from energy production to DNA synthesis.

Magnesium is crucial for muscle function, nerve transmission, heart rhythm regulation, and bone health. It’s also essential to metabolic processes, aiding glucose regulation and protein synthesis.

The Calcium-Magnesium Connection

If calcium and magnesium alone are essential for your wellbeing, they’re powerful together because each mineral influences the other’s absorption, metabolism, and utilization.

So, how does magnesium help absorb calcium?

Magnesium is vital for calcium metabolism. It facilitates activation of vitamin D. And in turn, vitamin D enhances calcium absorption in your intestines. Furthermore, magnesium helps regulate parathyroid hormone (PTH), which is responsible for calcium balance in your body.

This intricate interplay highlights the importance of maintaining adequate levels of calcium-magnesium for optimal health with calcium supplements and magnesium tablets – as well as vitamin D to help facilitate the process.

What Happens When Your Body’s Calcium-Magnesium Levels Are Low?

A calcium-magnesium combination is essential to your health, so a deficiency in either can significantly impact your body, including bone health, muscle function, nerve transmission, and cardiovascular health.

Let’s look at some consequences of calcium-magnesium deficiency.

Signs and Symptoms of Calcium Deficiency (Hypocalcemia) and Magnesium Deficiency (Hypomagnesemia)

Bone Issues

Calcium deficiency can weaken teeth and bones, making them more susceptible to fractures.

In addition, both minerals are involved in bone formation and mineralization, so low levels may contribute to bone loss and increase your risk of osteoporosis.

Muscle Cramps and Spasms

woman's legs to illustrate cramp from lack of calcium and magnesium supplements

Your muscles are vital for daily activities. Since calcium-magnesium is essential for muscle function, including contraction and relaxation, inadequate levels can lead to muscle cramps, spasms, and weakness.

Nerve Function Impairment

Low calcium levels can disrupt nerve function, leading to symptoms such as tingling sensations, numbness, and – in severe cases – seizures.

Cardiovascular Problems

Because the calcium-magnesium duo maintains normal heart rhythm and muscle contraction (including heart muscle), a deficiency in either mineral may increase the risk of heart rhythm abnormalities and cardiovascular issues.

In addition, low magnesium levels may lead to arrhythmias, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease since magnesium also helps to regulate blood pressure.

Fatigue and Weakness

Feeling fatigued could be due to magnesium deficiency. Since this mineral is essential for energy metabolism and ATP (adenosine triphosphate) production, inadequate levels can lead to fatigue, weakness, and reduced physical performance. But magnesium tablets can help restore your energy.

Nervous System Disorders

Because magnesium is involved in nerve transmission and neurotransmitter regulation, a calcium-magnesium deficiency can lead to symptoms such as irritability, anxiety, depression, and insomnia.

How Do You Ensure an Adequate Calcium-Magnesium Intake for Optimal Health?

Three women enjoying preparing healthy food to illustrate the role of calcium and magnesium in the diet

Now you’re aware of the consequences of low levels of calcium-magnesium, an adequate intake via food or calcium-magnesium tablets should be a priority for maintaining optimal health and preventing all these deficiency-related health problems described above.

You can achieve an adequate intake of calcium-magnesium via magnesium tablets, calcium supplements, and by adopting four simple habits:

A Balanced Diet

Consume a balanced diet with calcium-magnesium-rich foods.

Good sources of calcium include:

  • Dairy products, such as milk, yogurt, and cheese.
  • Leafy green vegetables, such as kale, broccoli, and collard greens.
  • Fortified foods, such as tofu, orange juice, and breakfast cereals.
  • Fish, such as canned salmon and sardines.

Magnesium-rich foods include:

  • Nuts and seeds, such as almonds, cashews, and pumpkin seeds.
  • Whole grains, such as brown rice, quinoa, and oats.
  • Legumes, such as beans, lentils, and chickpeas.
  • Leafy green vegetables and certain fruits, such as bananas, avocados, and figs.

Optimizing Absorption with Vitamin D3

You can enhance calcium-magnesium absorption by consuming specific foods and vitamin D, specifically vitamin D3.

Vitamin D in its D3 format plays an essential role in calcium absorption. So, to boost your body’s absorption of calcium, increase your consumption of vitamin D3-rich foods or the time you spend in sunlight, which stimulates vitamin D synthesis in your skin. If you’re not often exposed to sunlight or don’t consume enough foods rich in vitamin D, you can add vitamin D3 supplements to your diet.

For best magnesium absorption, consume foods high in fiber and avoid excessive intake of caffeine, alcohol, and processed foods, which can interfere with magnesium absorption, as will the lack of vitamin D3 we mentioned.

Adopting a Healthy Lifestyle

A healthy lifestyle is always beneficial! Regular physical activity, for example, helps support bone and muscle health and overall wellbeing. But smoking and alcohol consumption can negatively impact calcium-magnesium absorption and utilization in your body. Avoiding these habits may help you achieve adequate levels of both minerals.

Finally, don’t forget to take care of your mental health with stress management techniques, such as meditation, yoga, deep breathing exercises, and adequate sleep, as stress can deplete magnesium levels.


If these lifestyle changes are not enough to reach healthy levels of calcium-magnesium, magnesium tablets and calcium supplements will enhance your healthy food intake.

For example, if you have increased nutritional needs due to pregnancy, breastfeeding, or certain medical conditions, consider taking quality calcium-magnesium tablets and vitamin D3 supplements as well as eating healthy food.

Let’s look now at calcium-magnesium supplementation and its benefits for health.

Unlocking the Benefits of a Calcium-Magnesium Supplement

women having a workout to illustrate a healthy lifestyle to aid calcium and magnesium absorption

Quality calcium-magnesium supplements offer a convenient and effective way to ensure adequate intake of these essential minerals, providing many benefits beyond bone health, including the following:

  • Improve cardiovascular health, regulate heart rhythm, and reduce the risk of hypertension.
  • Regulate blood pressure, relax blood vessels, and prevent arterial calcification.
  • Promote optimal muscle function, alleviating cramps, spasms, and weakness.
  • Improve sleep quality.
  • Prevent chronic conditions, including colorectal cancer, kidney stones, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and migraines.
  • Regulate glucose and insulin sensitivity.
  • Improve neurotransmitter function, contributing to overall metabolic health and wellbeing.

Who Should Take Calcium-Magnesium Tablets?

If you’re experiencing any of the symptoms described above, are at risk of calcium-magnesium deficiency, or don’t consume enough calcium-magnesium-rich foods, you should start taking supplements to restore balance and improve your health.

In addition, individuals with inadequate dietary intake, increased nutrient needs, and certain medical conditions, such as lactose intolerance, celiac disease, or kidney disorders, may also benefit from a calcium-magnesium supplement.

Timing and Dosage of a Calcium-Magnesium Supplement

Calcium-magnesium tablets can be taken at any time of the day, with or without food, depending on personal preference and tolerance.

Calcium-magnesium dosage recommendations vary depending on age, gender, health status, and specific needs. It’s essential to follow the recommended dosage instructions provided by your doctor and supplement manufacturers to help avoid possible side effects of diarrhea, nausea, or mild abdominal pain.

Before using calcium-magnesium tablets, consult with your healthcare provider to determine your specific nutrient needs, assess potential risks and benefits, and ensure safe and appropriate use of calcium-magnesium, especially if you have underlying health conditions or are taking medications.

According to your body’s specific needs, your doctor may recommend the proper dosage and whether to take calcium, magnesium, medications, or supplements like vitamin D separately or together. Which leads us to…

Can You Take Calcium and Magnesium Together?


woman taking a tablet to illustrate taking calcium and magnesium supplements togetherYes, you can take magnesium tablets and calcium supplements together under your doctor’s guidance. They will tell you the right proportion of calcium to magnesium according to your unique needs.

Taking calcium-magnesium tablets can be beneficial because magnesium helps regulate calcium levels and is involved in calcium absorption and utilization.

Additionally, magnesium is necessary to help the enzymes function that facilitate calcium metabolism. Therefore, ensuring adequate intake of both minerals can help optimize their benefits for overall health.

Many magnesium tablets and dietary supplements contain both minerals in a balanced ratio of calcium to magnesium to provide comprehensive support for bone health and overall wellbeing. However, pay attention to the calcium-to-magnesium dosage and formulation of the supplement to ensure you’re meeting your individual needs and not exceeding recommended intake levels.

You should also tell your doctor if you’re using medications to ensure they’re safe to take together.

The Role of Vitamin D3 in Calcium-Magnesium Intake

In addition to the calcium-magnesium combination, vitamin D supplement plays a crucial role in calcium absorption by facilitating calcium transport across the intestinal lining and regulating PTH secretion. So, ensuring adequate vitamin D intake, specifically vitamin D3, is crucial for optimizing calcium-magnesium absorption and utilization – thereby supporting bone health, healthy muscles and muscle function, and overall wellbeing.

Choosing Your Calcium-Magnesium Supplement

bottle of tablets falling into a hand to illustrate choosing a calcium and magnesium supplement

Now you know how essential it is to maintain adequate levels of these minerals, it’s time to choose a high-quality calcium-magnesium supplementation. This can be challenging!

Here are some factors to consider to ensure you choose the best calcium-magnesium for your needs:

1. Form of Calcium-Magnesium

Calcium-magnesium supplementation is available in various formats (magnesium tablets, liquid, powder, etc.) and forms, including calcium carbonate, calcium citrate, magnesium oxide, magnesium citrate, and magnesium glycinate. Each form has different absorption rates and bioavailability.

Here’s an overview of each of them and their uses:

Calcium Carbonate

Calcium carbonate contains calcium and, sometimes, other ingredients, such as vitamin D, which aids calcium absorption. It’s widely used because of its high concentration of calcium.

Calcium Citrate

Unlike calcium carbonate, which is primarily composed of calcium and carbonate, calcium citrate is made by combining calcium with citric acid. One of the main advantages of calcium citrate is its enhanced absorption rate compared to calcium carbonate, particularly if you have low stomach acid.

Magnesium Oxide

This version – magnesium oxide – contains magnesium combined with oxygen and is typically available in tablet or capsule form. Magnesium oxide is widely used due to its high magnesium content and low cost.

Magnesium Citrate

This variation – magnesium citrate – is a combination of magnesium and citric acid, creating a form of magnesium that is more easily absorbed by the body than other forms of magnesium. Magnesium citrate is used to address magnesium deficiency and is available in various forms, including magnesium tablets, capsules, and powders. In addition, magnesium citrate may also be used to promote bowel regularity due to its mild laxative effect.

Magnesium Glycinate

Magnesium glycinate is rich in glycine, an amino acid, which makes it highly bioavailable and well-tolerated. Also available in magnesium tablets, powder, and capsules.

2. Dosage and Elemental Content

Check the dosage of calcium-magnesium in each supplement and the elemental content (the amount of the mineral available for absorption).

You should also ensure that your calcium-magnesium product provides the recommended daily allowance (RDA) or adequate intake (AI) of calcium-magnesium for your age, gender, and specific needs.

And don’t forget to tell your doctor if you’re making use of medications before beginning your treatment.

3. Additional Nutrients and Absorption Enhancers

Some calcium-magnesium supplements contain additional nutrients that may enhance their absorption and support bone health, such as vitamin D3, K2, zinc, and boron. These absorption enhancers can help optimize the supplement’s effectiveness and ensure that your body properly absorbs and utilizes the minerals.

5. Quality and Purity

Choose calcium-magnesium tablets from reputable brands that adhere to strict quality control standards and use high-quality ingredients with as few unnecessary “other ingredients” as possible. This means you should look for calcium-magnesium tablets that have undergone third-party purity, potency, and safety testing, such as those certified by organizations like NSF International, USP (United States Pharmacopeia), or ConsumerLab.

6. Formulation and Convenience

Consider the formulation and dosage form of the supplement, such as calcium-magnesium tablets, capsules, chewable tablets, or powder. Choose a formulation that is convenient and easy for you while still avoiding risky “other ingredients.”

Ready to Optimize Your Health with Nava’s Calcium-Magnesium Supplements?

Explore Nava’s range of calcium-magnesium and vitamin D3 supplementation to support your overall wellbeing and unlock these health benefits:

  • Promote strong bones and teeth with calcium.
  • Support muscle function and relaxation with magnesium.
  • Enhance nerve transmission and cardiovascular health.
  • Maintain healthy blood pressure levels.

At Nava Health, we’re committed to providing you with the highest quality calcium-magnesium tablets and vitamin D supplements – trusted products formulated to meet your unique health needs. Schedule an appointment today and let’s talk about calcium-magnesium.

Image attribution

 | Website

A Medical Director, and one of the first physicians to join the Nava Health & Vitality Center, Dr. Douglas Lord has made significant contributions to our Center and its founding principles. Dr. Lord has helped develop and implement the Nava Method™—Nava’s proprietary approach to total body wellness. He has also been instrumental in liaising with other expert practitioners to successfully implement Nava’s range of therapies, treatments, and products.

Article Name
Calcium and Magnesium Supplements – What You Need to Know
Learn about the role and benefits of high quality calcium and magnesium supplements to ensure you meet your unique health needs.