Magnesium L-Threonate: A Powerful Nootropic for Memory Deficit

Updated February 16, 2024 by | Reviewed by William Gallagher, MNeuroSci
(Estimated reading time: 5 minutes)

Magnesium L-Threonate has been studied extensively for its ability to improve memory.

It is a powerful nootropic that can help those who suffer from memory deficits or cognitive decline due to aging, disease, and injury.

This article will explore the science behind this supplement and provide tips on how you can incorporate it into your Nootropic stack.

So without further ado, let's just get straight into it.

What is Magnesium L-Threonate?

Magnesium L-threonate is a magnesium salt formed by combining magnesium and threonic acid, a water-soluble component derived from vitamin C metabolic breakdown.

This form of magnesium is readily absorbed.

It helps to promote calming effects in the brain by increasing alpha waves while reducing beta waves.

This means you can expect enhanced memory formation when supplementing with this compound, as well as improved mood and focus. This form of magnesium also helps to boost synaptic density.

Specifically, it enhances synaptic plasticity and cognitive function by targeting the NMDA receptor sites on glutamate neurons (the cells that are responsible for learning and memory).

Synapses are the areas of communication between neurons and glial cells within the brain.

They help to transfer signals from one area of the brain to another, which is integral in maintaining memory function as well as learning ability.

When synapse formation declines with age or disease, cognitive processing also begins to decline at a similar rate.

Supplementing with Magnesium L-threonate helps to increase the number of synapses in your brain, which can help boost memory and focus ability as well as improve overall cognitive function across all age groups!

How does it work?

Magnesium acts centrally on glutamate receptors within neurons, where it regulates synaptic plasticity.

Specifically, it works at the NMDA receptor sites of glutamate neurons and boosts synaptic plasticity within parts of the brain responsible for learning and memory.

This is achieved by its ability to stimulate changes in dendritic spine morphology (the branched extensions that connect one neuron to another).

You can think about it like this:

Magnesium L-threonate helps to form connections between neurons and glial cells, which can help boost memory function as well as learning ability.

By increasing the number of synaptic receptors in your brain, you are helping to activate more neuronal branches that allow for enhanced communication between different areas of your brain.

This means increased focus, better mood, and improved memory formation.

Magnesium L-threonate also boosts brain levels of choline, which is essential for acetylcholine neurotransmitter function.

Acetylcholine is the primary means by which your neurons transfer messages to one another within the nervous system.

It's responsible for allowing your neurons to communicate with each other, which is integral in maintaining memory function as well as learning ability.

Magnesium L-threonate thus helps promote neurotransmitter balance within your brain by increasing acetylcholine levels, which can help improve overall cognitive processing speed and accuracy!

What are the benefits?

Magnesium L-Threonate has been shown to help those suffering from memory deficits or cognitive decline due to aging, disease, and injury.

This includes Alzheimer's Disease as well as other neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's. It can also help mitigate the effects of brain injuries that result in a loss of cognitive function.

In addition to its benefits for boosting memory and focus, Magnesium L-threonate can also improve mood by increasing serotonin production within your brain.

Serotonin is an important neurotransmitter for regulating moods as well as controlling appetite (and thus body weight).

When it comes to its Nootropic functions, Magnesium L-threonate has been shown to help your brain process information more quickly by increasing synaptic plasticity and enhancing cognitive functions across all age groups!

Magnesium L-Threonate Enhances Spatial Memory

According to this study, Magnesium L-threonate upregulated the expression of the NR2B subunit in hippocampal neurons.

Rats that received Magnesium L-threonate compared to control had:

  • The NR2B subunit expression in the hippocampus increased by 60% (p<0.001)
  • Upregulated the activation of CaMKII by 92% (p<0.01)
  • Enhanced the magnitude of LTP by 52% in the hippocampal slices (p<0.0001)

Magnesium L-threonate boosts the expression and magnitude of the NTR2B subunit in the hippocampus, which enhances hippocampal-dependent memory.

On days 0 and 24, a T maze was used to assess spatial working memory, environmental memory, and spatial orientation in a sample of 30 subjects.

On day 0, rats in both groups made 30% fewer correct choices, but magnesium L-threonate-treated aged rats made about 15% more accurate choices than untreated rats at day 24 (p<0.05).

All in all, this study showed that animals receiving magnesium L-threonate performed significantly better than control rats in memory acquisition (p=0.0001) and retention (p=0.002).

Also, the number of errors was dramatically reduced on the third day by more than 30% compared with the untreated control rats (p=0.000) and showed a significant increase in spatial orientation abilities, indicating that magnesium L-threonate enhances spatial memory and learning abilities in aged animals.

Quick Magnesium L-Threonate Dosage Guide

I recommend taking 500mg 1-2 times a day, with or without food.

For optimal results, it's best to take Magnesium L-threonate on an empty stomach (though this may make side effects like diarrhea worse for some people).

Getting the dosage right is key!

If you're taking too much, and your stomach will hate you for it.

If you're not taking enough, then Magnesium L-threonate may be less effective in its nootropic function and memory supporting abilities!

It's best to start with a lower dose (500mg) and work your way up from there until you find the right dosage that works for your body.

What are the side effects?

Magnesium L-threonate is generally well tolerated.

The most common side effect is diarrhea, which can be mitigated by drinking lots of water (which you should do anyway).

This tends to be more prevalent at higher doses.

Other milder yet still annoying symptoms like stomach upset or gas can also occur.

Fortunately, these tend to go away as your body adjusts to the supplement over time, and they should decrease in severity each week you continue supplementation.

In Summary

Magnesium L-threonate is a powerful nootropic that can be beneficial for both healthy individuals and those experiencing the effects of brain injuries, neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's disease.

Magnesium L-threonate is a great supplement for improving memory and learning ability, as well as reducing the effects of stress.

It's also very safe and has few side effects (diarrhea being most common).

The most common dosage is 500mg, though it can be taken in doses of 1000-2000mg.


How does Magnesium L-Threonate work?

L-Threonate is a form of magnesium that has been shown to improve neuroplasticity and enhance the expression of one of the NMDA receptor subunits in animals and people. In animal and human studies, magnesium L-threonate was found to improve cognitive memory assessments.

What is Magnesium L-Threonate used for?

Magnesium L-threonate is a supplement that has been studied for its neurological effects and ability to help manage mental disorders such as depression and memory loss. It is used for improving cognitive ability and memory.

What is the recommended dosage of Magnesium L-Threonate?

The most common dose for magnesium L-threonate ranges from 500mg - 2000 mg per day, taken once or twice daily depending on whether you are taking it as a nootropic supplement or to manage mental health problems like depression.

How long does Magnesium L-Threonate take to work?

Magnesium L-Threonate taken orally has been found to take at least 1 month to raise brain magnesium levels high enough to have an impact on memory formation.

Is Magnesium L-Threonate good for the brain?

Magnesium-L-threonate (MgT) has been shown to enhance brain magnesium levels which may be associated with improved memory and learning abilities. Researchers found that rats fed a diet containing MgT performed better in several cognitive tasks such as those involving short-term memory, long-term memory, and working (short-term) memories compared to animals not receiving the supplement.

What is the difference between Magnesium and Magnesium L-Threonate?

Magnesium L-Threonate is a special type of magnesium that has been found to have better absorption and bioavailability in the brain.