T Nation

What Has Been Your Experience Using ZMA?

For the most part I have a healthy diet, I take GNC Mega Man Multi-Vitamin, ON Whey, Fish Oil, and Vitamin D3.

I am having issues sleeping and being constantly sore and my lifting partner suggested that I try ZMA. He is in his 60s like me and said it has really helped him.

What are your experiences with ZMA? Is it worth a try? How will it interact with my other supplements?


Have you had your hormone panel checked lately? Poor sleep is just one symptom of low testosterone.

There’s any number of reasons for poor sleep and muscle soreness, often nothing to do with hormones. That being said I’m back on ZMA, I seem to get what feels like deeper sleep and very whacky vivid dreams, and normal test levels feel supported. Sometimes I wake up too early feeling quite awake, and some people actually find sleep worsens. I would recommend trying it for a couple weeks and making a decision.

The man is in his 60’s. It very appropriate for him to know his hormone levels so he can make educated choices.

1 Like

I’d get deep sleep, sometimes wake up before my alarm, but sometimes wake up super groggy.

Sometimes I don’t take it if I go to bed too late, but I should probably get that back in.

I like it a lot. I can wake up groggy if I take it right before bed and I have to get up early, but as long as I take it an hour or more before bed I’m good. I normally wake up on my own about 15 minutes before my alarm goes off (about 5:15) even on non-work days, but I’m usually able to go back to sleep for a couple of hours on the weekends.

1 Like

Fixed lol.

I think we’re both correct

Doctor checked it several weeks ago with everything else. Said it was within normal range. Can’t recall the exact numbers at this time.

You can still feel like shit at the so called “normal” range. Any other issues? Brain fog? Low libido? Poor quality erections? Difficulty losing weight?

Here’s 4 years worth of anecdotes that show how stupid most Drs are when it comes to Testosterone and related issues


1 Like

Yeh same. Today more vivid dreams. Woke up half way thru the night, but then what seemed like moments later it was half 5 when I normally get up. Gym opens an hour later on a weekend and had no problem going back to sleep for an hour. It’s certainly a different sleep experience but it kinda feels like how it’s meant to be.

I used to have zma most nights to help with sleep, it worked ok, but have switched to glycine and gaba in the past week and have had 2 nights where I slept just shy of 9 hours, which is unheard of for me. Every other night has been a solid 7 hours waking at around 5 or so feeling fresh.


ZMA doesn’t really help me fall asleep. It may increase dream activity, and honestly, I do feel better in the morning if I’ve been dreaming. Maybe its just a sign of a certain level of sleep, or maybe I resolve some stress during dreams. LOW magnesium can certainly do things that hurt sleep. LOW zinc can lower testosterone and so can poor sleep but I don’t know if ZMA supplements actually claim to have been demonstrated to improve sleep.

But you do need Zinc and Magnesium, and ZMA from Biotest is the only zinc supplement that I have used that doesn’t give me nausea and nausea before bed can certainly make it hard to go to sleep. So in summary I recommend Biotest ZMA as a zinc and magnesium supplement but I don’t recommend multi-vitamins because they don’t contain a proper balance of nutrients and tend to provide too much of some to get enough of others.

My wife has had magnesium deficient patients who have used high doses of magnesium for 3-5 days and basically if got rid of borderline depression symptoms and fibromyalgia, but I would want to use a straight magnesium source for that. B vitamins can sometimes have a calming effect that helps sleep, but I don’t remember which B vitamin does most of the good.

Where can you get GABA and glycine (generally-not asking for a website, though Biotest doesn’t have a GABA or glycine suppliment as far as I know so you should be able to say, as long as you don’t link).

1 Like

That’s interesting what you said about depression symptoms.

I always buy them on eBay, 1 kg of each is about 25 bucks

1 Like

I tried zma for a while but it gave me stomach pain. Tried different brands, but still the same issue.

I don’t take ZMA, specifically. But I do supplement pretty regularly with about 600mg of Magnesium Citrate and 30mg Zinc before bed for depth of sleep. After jiujitsu training (when I don’t get home until after 9pm), I’ll add in some Glycine (3-5g) to help chill the neurons.

CORRECTION: Magnesium Glycinate, not Citrate

1 Like

Normal range from a PCP only means you are not dying from something.
In our world the difference between normal range and optimal range is living in your 60s or just getting by.
OP studhammer is trying to help. I’m 65 by the way.