Compare Metamucil vs. Magnesium Citrate

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

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Helps get things moving.

Metamucil (psyllium) is a natural fiber that is cheap and effective at relieving constipation.

3.8/ 5 average rating with 454 reviewsforMetamucil
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.

Upsides
  • Inexpensive and available over-the-counter.
  • Made from a natural product.
  • Using Metamucil (psyllium) has multiple benefits, including relieving constipation, lowering cholesterol, and making you feel full.
  • 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.
Downsides
  • Metamucil (psyllium) can take up to 72 hours to relieve constipation.
  • Not the best choice for people who have swallowing problems or can't drink lots of liquids.
  • Metamucil (psyllium) can cause gas and stomach cramps.
  • 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.
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Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Powder
  • Liquid
No pricing information available
No pricing information available
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Reviews
454 reviews so far
71%
saidit'sworth it
45%
saiditworked well
10%
saidit'sa big hassle

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Side effects
The Metamucil (psyllium) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
The Citrate Of Magnesia (Magnesium Citrate) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
Risks and risk factors
  • Blockage of small or large intestine
    • Age 60 or older
    • Cancer
    • Taking medicines that cause constipation
    • Limited liquid intake
  • Choking
    • Limited liquid intake
    • Swallowing problems
  • Serious allergic reaction
    • Hypersensitivity to psyllium
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Bowel blockage
    • Age 60 or older
    • Malignancy
    • Other condition that causes blockage or narrowing of bowel
    • Taking medications that cause constipation
  • Electrolyte imbalance
    • Taking with medications that cause electrolyte imbalance
    • Age 60 or older
  • 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
    • Taking Citrate Of Magnesia (Magnesium Citrate) if you have neuromuscular disease
  • High magnesium levels
    • Kidney disease
    • Taking other magnesium-containing medicines or supplements
See more detailed risks and warnings