In June 2017 researchers from the USA published the results of their study to assess whether over-the-counter magnesium supplementation improved symptoms of depression. 112 individuals (average age 52 years; 38% male) who had been diagnosed with and currently experiencing mild-to-moderate symptoms of depression were included in the study. The individuals were divided into two groups and received either magnesium 248mg or no supplementation for a period of 6 weeks. Ongoing symptoms of depression were assessed during bi-weekly phone calls. Results showed that magnesium supplementation appeared to be associated with a significant improvement in symptoms, with the first signs of improvement being observed within 2 weeks. The beneficial effect of the magnesium was observed regardless of age, gender, severity of depression, or use of antidepressant treatments. The researchers concluded by stating that the magnesium supplementation worked quickly and was well tolerated without the need for close monitoring for toxicity.
Tarleton EK et al. Role of magnesium supplementation in the treatment of depression: A randomized clinical trial. PLoS One. 2017 Jun 27;12(6):e0180067