How to Make Magnesium Bicarbonate as a Water Additive


Making magnesium bicarbonate to use as a health promoting water additive is both an easy and affordable task!

Supplies needed:

1. A single liter of chilled, generic soda water, which is simply carbonated distilled water (CO2 in distilled water)

Milk of Magnesia2. One container of Milk of Magnesia – Please make certain you purchase pure milk of magnesia with no additional flavoring or additives. One desires simple and plain magnesium hydroxide ( Mg(OH)2 ).

For a supply of pure magnesium hydroxide, alternatively, you can purchase the powder form here: Pure Magnesium Hydroxide Powder (250 grams)   .  Follow the same directions as given below, only, use 3.6 grams of the powder per liter of CO2 Water (just under one teaspoonful).  Add the powder directly to the seltzer water.  If you experience problems getting the magnesium to mix/react, then simply add the magnesium powder to a few ounces of water first.  Mix well, and then add the solution to the carbonated water!

How to prepare:

Shake the bottle of Milk of Magnesia well. Measure out three tablespoonfuls of the white, milky solution.

Open the bottle of soda water, and quickly pour out about three tablespoonfuls of soda water. Then, pour in the three tablespoonfuls of milk of magnesia. Quickly put the cap of the soda water back on. Shake vigorously. Then, place the modified soda water in the refrigerator for thirty minutes. After thirty minutes or so, remove the water, and shake vigorously once more. The solution should become cloudy.

Refrigerate once more. After another 30 minutes or so, the magnesium bicarbonate solution will be ready to use. It should, at this point, be crystal clear. If there is any undissolved magnesium resting at the bottom of the bottle, simply ignore it.

The chemical reaction that produces the magnesium bicarbonate:

Mg(OH)2 + 2CO2 —> Mg(HCO3)2

In essence, the magnesium hydroxide comprising the “milk of magnesia” reacts with the CO2 in the “soda water” to form magnesium bicarbonate.

There are individuals out there who slowly drink this solution straight, drinking small amounts at a time. However, we prefer to use this as a concentrate, adding small amounts (about an ounce or per gallon) to high quality drinking water, as specified in my post An Introduction to Drinking Water.

Unlike other forms of magnesium, magnesium bicarbonate is about 50% bio available through internal use. 50% is adsorbed into the body where it becomes available to cells, and about 50% enters the colon.

Similar water, with trace minerals added, sells for about $32.00 a Liter in Australia, under the commercial name “Amazing Micro Water”.

According to noted magnesium author Marc Sircus, bicarbonates are the perfect delivery system to transport magnesium directly into the mitochondria.

To quote Sircus:

“It was actually the dedicated work of Dr Russell Beckett, a veterinarian with a PhD in biochemical pathology that paved the way to understand the significance of bicarbonate acting in conjunction with magnesium. He has formulated “Unique Water” which, it has been asserted, slowed the aging process and increased the length of life of humans and other mammals and could be used to treat all inflammatory and degenerative diseases. Unique Water is water containing magnesium bicarbonate at an alkaline pH value. Dr. Beckett’s theoretical and experimental research has resulted in the understanding how important both of bicarbonate and magnesium ions are in human physiology and how they work together to optimize human health and the ability to recover from disease.

Bicarbonate ions working alongside magnesium would naturally create the conditions for increased glucose transport across cell plasma membranes. Bicarbonate ions without doubt create the alkaline conditions for maintaining the enzyme activity of pancreatic secretions in the intestines. Bicarbonate neutralize acid conditions required for inflammatory reactions hence sodium bicarbonate would be of benefit in the treatment of a range of chronic inflammatory and autoimmune diseases…”

“…Magnesium does not readily reach the mitochondrion, but if plenty of bicarbonate is available the bicarbonate will act as transport into the mitochondrion. The only problem is that the few magnesium bicarbonate products available for sale are expensive compared to using magnesium chloride and sodium bicarbonate individually. It is possible though, that one can always make their own magnesium bicarbonate.”

Making magnesium bicarbonate a part of a balanced and vibrant drinking water is an exceptional idea. Please note, however, that individuals with chronic inflammatory conditions or calcification of arteries may have to go slow, and limit the amount of magnesium bicarbonate taken on a daily basis until the body goes through a cleansing crisis. This is one reason why we suggest using smaller amounts of magnesium bicarbonate added to drinking water, rather than drinking the concentrated form directly.

That, and just the right amount of magnesium bicarbonate added to good drinking water makes the water taste simply perfect! Be sure to view the article/post on an introduction to drinking water in order to learn how to make the perfect water for your individual preferences.

As with all magnesium products, the symptoms of excessive use are loose bowels and muscle cramps.  Reduce dosage if either of these symptoms occur.

20 thoughts on “How to Make Magnesium Bicarbonate as a Water Additive”

  1. I want to produce magnesium bicarbonate from magnesium oxide adding it in the first step to water for getting magnesium hydroxide out of it.
    But I am not quite sure if there is no problem with this additional step and with the fact that the magnesium oxide is “only” 70-75% chemically pure.
    Could anybody help me with that issue and also tell me what proportions should I use in every single step?

    1. Hi Matt:

      I wouldn’t be able to help you there. What you could do is simply slowly keep adding magnesium until it starts to crystallize and fall out of suspension to the bottom of the bottle, making careful note of how much you’ve added to the seltzer water.

  2. Is there a reason why you don’t drink the concentrate straight? I have been drinking it straight but wonder now if I’m missing out on the benefits by doing so. Any information on this would be appreciated.
    Thank you in advance.

    1. Hi Donna:

      No specific reason; after adjusting to the effects of Magnesium Bicarbonate, you are certainly welcome to use it straight, many people do. Using it as a water additive is a way to make sure you have bioavailable magnesium titrating through your system throughout the day, and without the “strong” taste of using it straight.


    Good evening Jason,

    I have been making magnesium bicarbonate from your blog tutorial ever since you posted it. The first couple of times, it turned out great — nice, clear, perfect. But these past 2 times I’ve done it, all I get is milky seltzer. It never turns clear, not like before. Would you be able to troubleshoot this? I’m puzzled, since I’ve followed the same procedure each time.

    Fresh bubbly chilled seltzer water – 1 L
    Plain milk of magnesia – 3 T

    Remove 3 T seltzer water. Add in 3 T milk of magnesia. Cap & shake. Frig 30 min. Shake. Frig 30 min. And voila!

    But no! It’s still cloudy!??

    I use this as an essential component of electrolyte water that I use daily, so I need this to work. Any suggestions?


    1. Hi Janis-Marie:

      Usually, this is due to a problem with the seltzer water. If seltzer water sits on the store shelves for too long, it slowly starts to lose its carbonation. If used to make a carbonated drink, one might not notice, as the actual level of carbonation is hard to gauge visually and/or by taste. I would suggest trying a different brand, or trying a different store, and see if that helps!

    2. I wonder if some brands selling milk of magnesia neglect to list other ingredients. I don’t see why other ingredients would be necessary… or if they’d affect the reaction between CO2 and magnesium. Does it taste the same as your better batches? Is it possible the water source has changed for the brand that sells your carbonated water? And if so, would that affect how the magnesium bicarb acts in solution? I haven’t really thought about it – just posing some questions. I’ve only made a couple batches myself, and it turned out a little different each time with the same ingredients (but still good both times).

  4. In case anyone else was thinking of precipitating or otherwise collecting magnesium bicarbonate and turning it into a fine, dry powder… I just read that it only exists in aqueous solution. (darn) It apparently decomposes during drying to product magnesium carbonate and CO2. So don’t waste time trying to figure it out like I did!

    My question, though, is if the crystals I see all over the side of my glass pitcher are mag bicarb or the simpler mag carbonate. If it’s magnesium carbonate, with the stuff in solution still mag bicarb, I wonder how/why it happens, and how I’d prevent it from happening. I did add extra purified water after the fact, figuring that would give my science experiment more room to breathe. I didn’t add water to the last batch, and it never crystallized.

    1. Hi Colby:

      Yes, it is only an actual bicarbonate in hydrated form. Any excess magnesium in the solution will simply settle out at the bottom of the container; it’s not a big issue. I’m not sure the exact form of the precipitate, but it’s probably simply oxidized magnesium.

  5. Hi,
    I made the magnesium bicarbonate using seltzer water & MOM (that has just pure water with no additives). On the 2nd day the seltzer appears to have gone flat.
    My question:
    Does the magnesium remain a bicarbonate even after the seltzer is flat or should the seltzer still have fizz to keep the magnesium a bicarbonate??

  6. Hi eytonsearth,
    Many thanks for the info and the quick answer!!
    Definitely appreciated!
    Another question, If I use a Soda Stream Source to make seltzer water, I’m not sure how much carbonation would be adequate for making magnesium bicarbonate. The SSS has three levels of carbonation light to high. Would the light (bottom lower pump) be enough cO2 for a one liter bottle or should I use the highest level?
    Love your site BTW It’s very helpful.

    1. Hi June:

      You can use a a Soda Stream, but there is no real way to get the numbers perfect without trial and error. The good news is: If you use too much MOM/magnesium oxide, the only thing that will happen is that the extra magnesium will fall out of suspension and rest at the bottom of the container. Use the cleanest water you can (distilled water).

  7. Hi again,
    Sorry I didn’t frame my question well enough in my previous message.
    How much of the magnesium bicarbonate solution (as described in your article) would I add to 4 litres of distilled water for daily drinking.

    1. “we prefer to use this as a concentrate, adding small amounts (about an ounce or per gallon) to high quality drinking water, as specified in my post An Introduction to Drinking Water.”

  8. Hello,
    Sorry for asking the question in my previous messages. I had only skimmed over your article yesterday. Of course the answer is about an ounce per gallon.
    Thank you for this information.
    I have been drinking distilled water for about 5 years, so no doubt I am in dire need of magnesium bicarbonate.

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