Top 5 Phosphorus Supplements

Best Phosphorus SupplementsPhosphorus is one of the most overlooked essential minerals in human health, yet it is almost as abundant as calcium in the body. About 87% of the body’s phosphorus is found in the skeleton, 14% in soft tissues such a muscles, and 1% in the blood and fluids. This should give you some idea about its wide-reaching uses in the body – from energy production, skeletal health and even appetite control, phosphorus has a role to play.

A true dietary deficiency of phosphorus is VERY rare, but suboptimal levels can contribute to fatigue, muscle weakness, loss of appetite, bone fragility and numbness in the extremities. Boosting phosphates with supplementation has been shown to have some interesting effects…

Benefits and Use Cases for Phosphorous Supplementation

Bones, Teeth & Heart Health – Phosphate’s Connection With Calcium

Phosphate (the biological form of phosphorus) is essential in the development of skeletal tissues including bones, joints and fluids. In bone, phosphate is bound to calcium and included in the mineral matrix that gives bones their strength.

Unfortunately, phosphate binds easily to calcium outside of the bone environment too. In the blood, phosphate binding renders calcium unusable and causes a relative decline in calcium blood levels. In an effort to boost calcium levels, bone minerals are broken down to release calcium ions into circulation which contributes to weakened bones and teeth, and an increased risk of osteoporosis. If the bound phosphate and calcium can’t be adequately excreted (e.g. due to kidney disease), it may be deposited in the blood vessels and joints, increasing the risk of heart disease, stroke, and arthritis.

Finding the right balance between not-enough and too-much phosphate is key.

Normally, phosphate levels are tightly regulated to prevent the excessive binding of calcium in the blood. But this regulation can be disturbed by two very different things – kidney disease, and drinking soft drinks:

  • If you have kidney disease, it is important to have your calcium:phosphorus balance checked regularly as the kidneys may struggle to eliminate phosphorus. Speak to a nutritionist and your medical doctor before taking phosphate supplements.
  • Soft drinks, particularly colas, are rich in phosphoric acid. Studies have suggested a link between lower bone mineral density and tooth weakness, and soft drink consumption [1]. There is no evidence to date that taking sodium phosphate, calcium phosphate, or other bound phosphate supplements within safe dosage guidelines contributes to calcium disruption.

Phosphate For Weight Management

Studies on obesity have shown that a diet rich in dairy products, whole grains and protein-rich foods can all lead to significant weight loss. What do these three foods have in common? You guessed right – phosphorus.

With the advent of food industrialization, we began eating fewer of these food and more of the processed alternatives which contain lower phosphate levels – refined cereals, oils, sugars and sweeteners. It’s estimated that people in industrialized nations are consuming ~1.5g less phosphorus each day than the average person was 50 years ago; a decrease that correlates to an increase in the average BMI [2].

Recent studies have shown that supplementation of 500mg – 1g of phosphorus per day for 12 weeks can reduce total body weight and waist circumference [2][3]. This may be due to appetite control and metabolic regulation. In a study from 2015, participants in the phosphorus group effortlessly reduced the size of their main meals, their frequency of snacking, and self-reported scores of appetite and hunger. Another showed that phosphorus could boost the metabolic rate of obese and overweight participants [3].

How does it work? It’s still a mystery how phosphorus improves weight management, but it may have something to do with its key role in energy production (how most fat burners work):

Phosphate & Energy Production

Phosphate is essential for the production and utilization of energy within the body:

  • High-energy phosphate bonds are involved in ATP (cellular energy) and the breaking of these bonds provides energy for cellular functions throughout the whole body.
  • Phosphorus is particularly important for muscle strength and energy. It is a key component of creatine phosphate, a molecule synthesized within muscle fibers from ATP and creatine, which provides and replenishes energy to muscles as needed.
  • Phosphorus is involved indirectly in oxygen delivery. It is required within red blood cells for the release of oxygen from hemoglobin into tissue, and a deficiency in phosphorus can diminish the release of oxygen and aerobic energy production.
  • Phosphates are used in the activation of circulating thyroid hormones; likewise, thyroid hormones regulate the metabolism of phosphates. Supplementing with sodium phosphate has been shown to boost basal metabolic rate and thyroid hormone function in women on a low-energy weight loss diet [4].

Phosphate – Ergogenic Substance for Athletic Performance

As well as its role in energy production, phosphate appears to enhance the efficiency of myocardial (heart) tissue, greater delivery of oxygen to the muscles, and buffering of hydrogen ions released during high intensity exercise [5]. This keeps pH levels stable and lactic acid to a minimum, preventing metabolic acidosis and improving exercise recovery.

A review of the literature in 2013 demonstrated that taking of 3g – 5g/day of sodium phosphate supplements can improve sports performance in athletes [6]. A number of exercise-enhancing effects have been reported including improved heart adaption to exercise, increased aerobic capacity, and increased peak power output. Other studies have shown that endurance is also improved [5].

NOTE: A 5g dose is above the upper tolerable limit so stick to a moderate dose of 2g – 3g if you’re looking to safely experiment on yourself and your athletic performance.

How To Take Phosphate Supplements

Dosage: Between 400 mg and 2,000 mg daily is a safe and therapeutic dosage of phosphate.

The upper tolerable level is set at 4,000 mg in people aged 9 – 70 years, and 3,000 mg in those over 70 years or pregnant. Anything over this limit runs the risk of causing renal damage and heart disease.

NOTE: A diet that is high in preservatives often contains excessive amounts of phosphorus and adding supplementation to this can be dangerous. Speak to a nutritionist for personalized advice.

Forms: Phosphates are often attached to another mineral as a cofactor to improve the mineral’s availability and uptake. If you are looking to boost phosphorus levels, go with sodium phosphate or a B vitamin chelate to focus on boosting energy.


Taking phosphate supplements is slightly risky, even in healthy individuals. Its connection to calcium and bone degradation is worth worrying about. We recommend undertaking long-term phosphorus supplementation ONLY under guidance of a qualified nutritionist.

Short-term supplementation is generally safe for healthy individuals. Diarrhea and nausea may occur to tell you if taken too much, but some people experience no symptoms. Stick to the dosage guidelines and seek help when required.

Do NOT take phosphate supplements if you have:

  • Heart disease
  • Cirrhosis
  • Thyroid problems
  • Pancreatitis
  • Rickets
  • Osteomalacia
  • High blood pressure
  • Liver disease
  • Kidney disease

Speak to a qualified nutritionist and your medical physician for personalized advice. Do NOT take phosphate supplements with these medications or supplements unless under direction of a qualified practitioner:

  • Alendronate
  • Etidronate
  • Risedronate
  • Tiludronate
  • Potassium-sparing diuretics
  • Vitamin D

The 5 Best Phosphate Supplements

Pure phosphate supplements are few and far between, but we’ve rounded up the best ones for you. It’s more common to find phosphate as a co-factor or bound to the major active ingredient in a supplement (e.g. calcium phosphate). We’ve included the best of both, all delivering a good dose of phosphate to support your body’s energy production, weight management, thyroid health and athletic performance.

#5 Swanson 100% Pure Monosodium Phosphate (113g)

Phosphorus SupplementThis supplement is a great choice if you’re looking to boost your phosphate levels with a pure, easily absorbed salt. Each scoop contains 250mg of phosphate – a gentle, therapeutic daily dose. The product is reportedly a little gritty but it dissolves when stirring it into a glass of water for about 15 seconds. Because of the sodium content, this supplement is NOT suitable for people with cardiovascular disease – peak to a nutritionist and physician before taking monosodium phosphate if you are at risk of CVD.

#4 Throne Research Riboflavin 5′-Phosphate

Thorne PhosphorusThorne Research have “activated” vitamin B2 by attaching a phosphate ion to create a riboflavin molecule that the body will readily and quickly use without any further activation required. In an indirect way, this supplement can boost phosphate levels by sparing the body’s phosphate being used in regular vitamin B2 activation, and by supplying a little extra phosphate too (approx. 13.5mg per capsule). Once this activated riboflavin molecule is utilized, the phosphate ion will be released and reused within the body.

Vitamin B2 essential for the formation of other B vitamins, utilized in methylation pathways, and energy production pathways that also utilize phosphate. Thorne Research products are free from common allergens, artificial preservatives, GMOs, and stearates. This is a great choice if you’re looking for a clean, quick way to boost energy and gently raise your phosphate levels.

#3 Pure Organics Ingredients Monosodium Phosphate Powder (4 oz)

Organic Phosphorus PowderPure Organics Ingredients have packaged a simple, cheap and effective monosodium phosphate supplement. It contains a 1:1 ratio of sodium to phosphate, and just ¼ of a teaspoon (approx. 2g) of this powder is a sufficient therapeutic daily dose. This product is particularly finely ground – it is easily dissolved with no gritty texture.

This monosodium phosphate can also be used as a mouthwash to strengthen teeth – dissolve in water and swish around the mouth for a few minutes after brushing.

#2 Wellness One World Liquid Ionic phosphorus (50mL)

Liquid Phosphorus SupplementIf measuring out powders for precise dosages seems inconvenient, try this ultra-easy ionic form of phosphorus instead. Through a process called “ionization”, Wellness One World have converted the phosphates in phosphoric acid into single phosphorus ions – essentially doing the work of your stomach’s acid during digestion. This reduces nutrient loss and allows the body to easily utilize the phosphate. As a highly concentrated supplement containing easily-absorbed and bioavailable phosphorus ions, just 5 drops in a glass of water per day will deliver a therapeutic dose.

This supplement contains only phosphorus ions suspended in water. It’s clean, easy to use, and has great reviews on Amazon. Check it out!

#1 Bulk Supplements Creatinol-O-Phosphate

Pure Creatinol-o-phosphateBulk Supplements offer a simple, pure creatinol-O-phosphate supplement. Creatinol is NOT the same as creatine. Creatinol-O-Phosphate is used as a drug for cardio protection and to correct heart arrhythmias. In the workout world, this compound is targeted for creating and replenishing muscle energy, maintaining muscle pH and clearing lactic acid for longer, stronger workouts and gains. It may also assist in post-exercise muscle recovery.

Bulk Supplements products are clean powders at affordable prices. No sugar, soy, dairy, yeast, gluten or additives are included. Drink lots of water while working out after taking this supplement to prevent dehydration and support your kidneys.

View Creatine-O-Phosphate on Amazon Here

Further Reading:

About James Lyons

James Lyons (BHSc Nutritional Medicine) is a clinical nutritionist, medical writer, and educator. He specialises in plant-based nutrition and is passionate about improving public access to reliable and accurate health information.

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