Compare Magnesium Citrate vs. Metamucil

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Citrate Of Magnesia (Magnesium Citrate)

Prescription or OTC

Metamucil (Psyllium)

Over-the-counter
Treats constipation.

Citrate Of Magnesia (Magnesium Citrate) works well if you need to really get things moving, but it's not a good medicine to manage chronic constipation.

Helps get things moving.

The natural psyllium fiber in Metamucil (Psyllium) does more than relieve constipation. It lowers cholesterol, keeps blood sugar levels healthy, and makes you feel less hungry between meals.

5.2/ 7 average rating with 454 reviewsforMetamucil
Upsides
  • Really strong laxative that gets things moving fast.
  • Can also be used to prep your bowel before you go for surgery or colonoscopy. Your doctor will give you specific instructions if you use it this way.
  • Psyllium is the most recommended brand of natural fiber laxative
  • Some people feel that taking Psyllium is a hassle, but most think it's worth it.
  • It has multiple health benefits, good to control your hunger between meals, improves your blood sugar and lowers cholesterol levels.
  • Studies show it works better than a stool softener for constipation.
Downsides
  • It doesn't work for everyone and some people feel it's a hassle.
  • Some brands are of Magnesium Citrate are tinted red and can change the color of your stool.
  • Can cause dizziness, weakness, diarrhea, and the feeling that you "have to go right now".
  • Magnesium Citrate contains magnesium which prevents certain medicines from working properly. Make sure you take your dose of Magnesium Citrate at least 2 hours before or after other medicines.
  • You can't take it for more than a week or so.
  • You may have to take Psyllium daily for 1-3 days to see full effects.
  • If you don't take it with enough liquid, it could swell, block your throat and cause choking.
  • Not the best choice for people who have swallowing problems or aren't able to drink lots of liquids.
  • Psyllium contains psyllium. Don't take if you have an allergy to psyllium from breathing it in or swallowing it.
  • Can cause gas and mild belly cramps.
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Liquid
  • Liquid
No pricing information available
No pricing information available
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Reviews
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454 
71%
think this treatment is worth it
45%
think this treatment works well
10%
think this treatment is a hassle

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Side effects
The Citrate Of Magnesia (Magnesium Citrate) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
The Metamucil (Psyllium) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
Risks and warnings
  • Bowel blockage

    Age 60 or older

    ...and 3 more risk factors

  • Electrolyte imbalance

    Taking with medications that cause electrolyte imbalance

    ...and 1 more risk factors

  • Risk to fetus

    Women of childbearing age

  • Worsening of neuromuscular conditions

    Taking Citrate Of Magnesia (Magnesium Citrate) if you have kidney disease and neuromuscular disease

    ...and 1 more risk factors

  • High magnesium levels

    Kidney disease

    ...and 1 more risk factors

See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Bowel blockage

    Age 60 or older

    ...and 3 more risk factors

  • Serious allergic reaction

    Sensitivity to psyllium

See more detailed risks and warnings