Which is Better for Sleep: Magnesium or Melatonin?

Written by Naomi Meza


Posted on July 15 2022

Good sleep is a basic necessity for everything from our immune system to our mood and brain power. Sleep is important.

And it can be hard to come by. With today's busy lifestyle, our body clocks can get all out of sync.


Related Post: How to Gain Quality Sleep With Magnesium


Even when we are ‘relaxed' or ‘sleeping', the brain still tosses and turns because it never achieves complete rest.

It's bad news, but there may be a few shortcuts. One such shortcut is through magnesium and melatonin supplements, which are both proven to help people sleep longer and better.

Differences Between Magnesium and Melatonin in Regards to Sleep Quality

What is Magnesium?

Magnesium rich foods around a chalkboard with mg written on it

Magnesium is a mineral that's naturally produced in the body. It plays an important role in nerve signaling and muscle contraction, as well as helping regulate blood pressure and blood sugar levels.


Related Post: What is Magnesium - The Forgotten Mineral?


Low magnesium is common in people who don't get enough from their diets, so supplements can help maintain healthy levels of magnesium in the body.

When taken before sleeping, magnesium is good for improving sleep quality by reducing stress and anxiety—two conditions that can negatively impact sleep quality—and increasing GABA production in the brain.


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What is Melatonin?

Person asleep using melatonin

Melatonin is a hormone produced naturally by the brain's pineal gland that regulates our circadian rhythm—the 24-hour cycle of activity and rest that keeps us healthy and alert during daylight hours but allows us to relax at night when it's dark outside.

It's also effective at treating jet lag because it helps reset our body clocks after traveling through time zones quickly; however, melatonin should not be taken more than once per day without consulting a doctor first because it has been linked to some serious side effects if used improperly.

How Does Magnesium Improve Sleep Compare to Melatonin?

Magnesium oil spray greenway biotech in a clear glass bottle

Magnesium is one of the most important minerals, and you need it to keep your body running smoothly.

Here are some ways that magnesium can improve your sleep quality compared to melatonin:

  • Sleep efficiency: Magnesium plays a role in maintaining healthy levels of serotonin, which helps regulate sleep and wake cycles.

Melatonin is a hormone that influences circadian rhythms, or the body's internal clock. Both melatonin and magnesium can help you fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer, but magnesium may be better at improving overall sleep quality.
  • Sleep time: magnesium has been shown to increase sleep time (the number of hours slept), while melatonin has been shown to increase sleep efficiency (the percentage of time spent sleeping).

  • Sleep onset latency: Magnesium reduces how long it takes for your brain and body to get ready for sleep, which means there are fewer interruptions throughout the night when trying to fall asleep again after waking up briefly during the night (this is called "sleep maintenance").

What Are the Benefits of Magnesium and Melatonin?

Woman in blue shirt standing in kitchen drinking greenway biotech magnesium chloride usp powder supplement

Magnesium and melatonin are two natural sleep aids that can help you fall asleep faster, sleep deeper, and wake up feeling more refreshed.

They work on different parts of the body and have different mechanisms of action, but they both have been proven to be effective in helping people who suffer from insomnia or other sleep disorders.


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What Are the Benefits of Magnesium?

The benefits of melatonin include:

  • Helps regulate circadian rhythm

  • Help protect against cancer

  • Boost immune function

What Are the Side Effects of Magnesium and Melatonin?

Person holding stomach in pain

Magnesium and melatonin are key supplements to helping your body function properly. And getting enough can help with sleep, among other things. But ingesting too much of it causes side effects.

Magnesium supplements or medications can cause:

  • Nausea

  • Abdominal cramping

  • Diarrhea

Melatonin supplements are available over-the-counter, but like all medications, there are side effects associated with taking melatonin supplements. Melatonin side effects can include:

  • Headache

  • Dizziness

  • Nausea

  • Drowsiness

How Do You Take Magnesium and Melatonin?

Woman drinking glass of water

Magnesium and melatonin are both popular supplements that can help you sleep. They might even be the perfect pair for a good night's rest!

But how do you take them?


Related Post: What is the Best Way to Take Magnesium?


First, let's talk about magnesium. Magnesium is a mineral that many people are deficient in.

It can help with muscle relaxation, blood pressure regulation, and proper nerve function.

You can find it in foods like spinach, beans, almonds, cashews, bananas, and more.

But if you don't eat enough of these foods or if you're not getting enough magnesium from your diet alone, then taking a supplement may be the way to go for better sleep.

There are a few different forms of magnesium that you can take to help improve sleep quality:

  • Magnesium oil: This type of magnesium is applied directly to the skin and absorbed through the pores. It can be used on any part of the body where you feel discomfort or soreness, including your back and neck. The oil absorbs easily into the skin without leaving behind any oily residue like other topical treatments would do.

  • Powder supplement: This form of magnesium requires you to mix it with water before taking it orally. Many people prefer this method because it's easier than taking pills every day but still provides all the benefits of taking supplements orally (except for those with difficulty swallowing).

  • Epsom salt baths: Epsom salt baths are known for their ability to soothe sore muscles after exercising or working long hours outdoors during hot summer months; however they are also effective at helping promote better sleep quality by relaxing


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Melatonin is a hormone synthesized in the pineal gland and released into the bloodstream at night.

Melatonin levels are highest during sleep, but they also rise during the dark phase when it is time to rest and fall again during the light phase of the day.

Melatonin has been used for years to help people fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. It can also help reset your body's internal clock if you have trouble sleeping because of jet lag or shift work.

Melatonin can be taken as a pill, but it also comes in many other forms, including sprays, gels, and liquids that you put under your tongue.

The effects of melatonin are not long-lasting; they usually wear off within two hours. So it's best to take melatonin about an hour before bedtime on a consistent daily schedule if you want to sleep better.

In What Cases Would One Be Better Than the Other?

Powder supplement and white capsules on a golden spoon on a pink background

For many people, magnesium and melatonin are two supplements that are used to help people sleep better.

However, there are some cases where one would be better than the other.

For example, if you have trouble falling asleep because you feel anxious or excited about something that happened during the day, then taking magnesium before bedtime may help you fall asleep faster.

On the other hand, if your problem is waking up in the middle of the night and not being able to get back to sleep again until morning, then taking melatonin may be better than magnesium because it can help you stay asleep through the night without waking up as much.

Bottom Line

Although magnesium and melatonin are both beneficial supplements that aid sleep, each one differs in its intended purpose.

If you are just trying to get enough magnesium for sleep or overall you want to try to balance your magnesium levels through natural means.

You might want to consider just taking a supplement of Magnesium as there will be less work and also you will be able to see how your body reacts if it needs the extra help.

Shop our magnesium products here!



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