T Nation

ZMA vs (Zinc + Magnesium)

It looks like ZMA costs considerably more than its components separately. I also didn’t find any particular rational for ZMA ratios and don’t understand what makes it special. The only independent study I found that ZMA has no effect on strength, hormone levels, or anaerobic capacity.

So what is special about ZMA as compared to Zinc + Magnesium for deficiency?

ZMA here comes with free shipping, free articles, and free forums to ask questions.

[quote]msd0060 wrote:
ZMA here comes with free shipping, free articles, and free forums to ask questions.[/quote]

So the T-Nation store is sorta like a donation box, right?

[quote]skor wrote:
It looks like ZMA costs considerably more than its components separately.

Yes it is a little more. There is a patent on it and all still have to pay royalties, I believe.

I also didn’t find any particular rational for ZMA ratios and don’t understand what makes it special.

It is based on studies primarily by the company that developed it.

The only independent study I found that ZMA has no effect on strength, hormone levels, or anaerobic capacity.

Some yes and some no. Did you look at the individual components also? Zinc being the most important?

Effect of fatiguing bicycle exercise on thyroid hormone and testosterone levels in sedentary males supplemented with oral zinc.Kilic M.

School of Physical Education and Sports, Selcuk University, Konya, Turkey. kmkilic@yahoo.com.tr

OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to determine how exercise affects thyroid hormones and testosterone levels in sedentary men receiving oral zinc for 4 weeks. METHODS: The study included 10 volunteers (mean age, 19.47+/-1.7 years) who did not exercise.

All subjects received supplements of oral zinc sulfate (3 mg/kg/day) for 4 weeks and their normal diets. The thyroid hormone and testosterone levels of all subjects were determined at rest and after bicycle exercise before and after zinc supplementation. RESULTS: TT3, TT4, FT3, and total and free testosterone levels decreased after exercise compared to resting levels before supplementation (p<0.01).

Both the resting and fatigue hormone values were higher after 4 weeks of supplementation than the resting and fatigue values before supplementation (p<0.05). CONCLUSION: The results indicate that exercise decreases thyroid hormones and testosterone in sedentary men; however, zinc supplementation prevents this decrease. Administration of a physiologic dose of zinc can be beneficial to performance.

So what is special about ZMA as compared to Zinc + Magnesium for deficiency?[/quote]

Maybe nothing if you use a quality form of Zinc and Magnesium. ZMA also has B6.

I believe Zinc is the most important, but more people are deficient in Magnesium than Zinc. If you take Zinc you may want to make sure you have enough Copper in your diet.

Well it depends what your comparing it too. ZMA uses Zn and Mg amino acid complexes. Rather then inorganic salts like most mg/zn supps. The complexes have a greater bioavailability. I BELIEVE that its because the minerals get absorbed through a different absorption route by being dragged by the amino acid it is covalently bound too.

However, Zn and Mg amino chelates are available in bulk. But then you have to fiddle with getting dosages right by weighing it all up. It would be pain in the arse.

Mate you couldn’t have posted at a better time.

I myself, personally, am a big fan of ZMA. It does increase T levels and somewhat cuts back on the fatigue thats experienced post-training.

However, ZMA formulas are not readily available in my region. Now I know for a fact that in order for this formula to work you need Magnesium Oxide, coupled with Zinc Citrate and Vit B6 as Pridoxine Hydrochloride. Problem is, I can’t seem to find Zinc Citrate thats sold seperately. So I ended up getting Zinc Sulphate. I mix it up with Magnesium that is derived from the Oxide and Citrate form. And B6 as pri.hydro.

Do I need to work with the same dosages? I.e. 450mg Mag, 30mg Zinc, and 10 mg B6…or do I need to play around with the dosages for better absorption?

The advantage is that they are higher quality forms, and it delivers all the minerals that share receptors with calcium and other minerals together so you can take them separately from everything else.

ZMA usually utilizes the aspartate form of magnesium, which is actually absorbable. Try to find a form that ends in -ate for your magnesium (gluconate, citrate, and aspartate are standards) Magnesium oxide has something like a 0.4% absorption rate, so it’s basically a waste of money.

I’ll second msd0060. Works great and the price is good. Take it before bed on an empty stomach and enjoy some colorfull dreams!

[quote]duke6j wrote:
I’ll second msd0060. Works great and the price is good. Take it before bed on an empty stomach and enjoy some colorfull dreams![/quote]

I don’t mean to hijack the thread here but can zinc + magnesium be used in conjunction with GABA? Or is there an effective way of cycling the two or can you use one on training days and the other on non-training days.

Thanks

[quote]threewhitelights wrote:
The advantage is that they are higher quality forms, and it delivers all the minerals that share receptors with calcium and other minerals together so you can take them separately from everything else.

ZMA usually utilizes the aspartate form of magnesium, which is actually absorbable. Try to find a form that ends in -ate for your magnesium (gluconate, citrate, and aspartate are standards) Magnesium oxide has something like a 0.4% absorption rate, so it’s basically a waste of money.[/quote]

Thanks for the info, appreciate it. My supplement contains 500mg of magnesium in the citrate and oxide form, so I guess I’m good to go as far as that is concerned. The zinc I’m taking (40mg) is in the sulphate form. So both these minerals have the -ate form, I’m all set right?

[quote]ComixGuy wrote:
duke6j wrote:
I’ll second msd0060. Works great and the price is good. Take it before bed on an empty stomach and enjoy some colorfull dreams!

I don’t mean to hijack the thread here but can zinc + magnesium be used in conjunction with GABA? Or is there an effective way of cycling the two or can you use one on training days and the other on non-training days.

Thanks[/quote]

There should be no reason why you couldn’t use GABA. You should look into phenibut. GABA can’t cross the blood brain barrier so its effects are limited to the body. Phenibut can pass through the blood brain barrier and will increase your quality of sleep. Phenibut can be purchased as a powder but Biotest sells Z-12 and phenibut is an ingredient in it.

I saw Optimum Nutrition sells a ZMA-like supp for a little bit cheaper. Same quantity of Zinc+Mag in it too. Worth it?

[quote]tw0scoops2 wrote:
I saw Optimum Nutrition sells a ZMA-like supp for a little bit cheaper. Same quantity of Zinc+Mag in it too. Worth it?[/quote]

Dunno, are the ingredients the same?

[quote]Doug Adams wrote:
tw0scoops2 wrote:
I saw Optimum Nutrition sells a ZMA-like supp for a little bit cheaper. Same quantity of Zinc+Mag in it too. Worth it?

Dunno, are the ingredients the same?[/quote]

Yeah, exactly.

[quote]tw0scoops2 wrote:
Doug Adams wrote:
tw0scoops2 wrote:
I saw Optimum Nutrition sells a ZMA-like supp for a little bit cheaper. Same quantity of Zinc+Mag in it too. Worth it?

Dunno, are the ingredients the same?

Yeah, exactly.[/quote]

you know that at Biotest you are getting exactly what you pay for,why chance it to save a couple off bucks and it might work or not! if it doesn’t work at all then you’ve spent money for nothing.

[quote]Rat Poison wrote:
tw0scoops2 wrote:
Doug Adams wrote:
tw0scoops2 wrote:
I saw Optimum Nutrition sells a ZMA-like supp for a little bit cheaper. Same quantity of Zinc+Mag in it too. Worth it?

Dunno, are the ingredients the same?

Yeah, exactly.

you know that at Biotest you are getting exactly what you pay for,why chance it to save a couple off bucks and it might work or not! if it doesn’t work at all then you’ve spent money for nothing. [/quote]

But it’s not like it’s some no name company…Pretty sure ON is a good one, at least their whey is good.

[quote]Rat Poison wrote:
tw0scoops2 wrote:
Doug Adams wrote:
tw0scoops2 wrote:
I saw Optimum Nutrition sells a ZMA-like supp for a little bit cheaper. Same quantity of Zinc+Mag in it too. Worth it?

Dunno, are the ingredients the same?

Yeah, exactly.

you know that at Biotest you are getting exactly what you pay for,why chance it to save a couple off bucks and it might work or not! if it doesn’t work at all then you’ve spent money for nothing. [/quote]

It’s ZMA for crist sake, it REQUIRES skill to screw it up. ON is a VERY reputable company. Personally, I would buy from Biotest because of free shipping.