Minerals That Support Healthy Blood Sugar
Theres a long debate about macronutrients and blood sugar, but theres a lot less information out there about micronutrients . Heres a look at four minerals that are important for blood sugar control, plus some ideas for getting them from delicious, nutrient-dense Paleo recipes.
A quick review :
- Blood sugar: the amount of sugar thats in your blood. Its fine and normal for blood sugar to go up after a meal, but then it needs to go back down again. Too much glucose hanging out in your bloodstream for a long time is very dangerous.
- Insulin: the hormone responsible for clearing sugar from the bloodstream.
- Insulin resistance: when insulin says please take this glucose out of the bloodstream and put it in a fat/muscle cell but your body doesnt listen to the insulin and blood sugar stays high. This is very bad news.
- Type 2 Diabetes: People with type 2 diabetes have chronic insulin resistance, so they have high blood sugar a lot of the time. .
There are reams and reams of studies on diabetes because its officially a disease so it gets a lot of attention. Problems managing blood sugar isnt officially a disease until it gets to a particular cut-off, so it doesnt get as much attention. But type 2 diabetes doesnt come from nowhere. It starts with problems managing blood sugar that steadily get worse over time. Diabetes is the extreme end of the spectrum, not some new and totally unrelated issue.
And now, for the minerals!
What To Look For With Supplements
Dietary supplements are not carefully monitored in the United States. Because of this, the quality can vary from one brand to the next.
For the highest level of quality, look for supplements that have been independently tested by a certifying body like the U.S. Pharmacopeia , NSF International, or ConsumerLab. The certification confirms that the supplement contains the ingredients and amounts listed on the product label.
Always read the label to check for any added ingredients you may be allergic or sensitive to, including gluten and animal-based gelatin.
Dietary Mg Deficiency May Predispose To Dm2
Dietary Mg deficiency may cause insulin resistance as shown by several studies both in humans and in experimental animals. In sheeps, Mg-deficient diet caused a significant impairment of insulin-mediated glucose uptake. In rats, Mg supplements were able to postpone the onset of diabetes. In healthy women , the higher was the intake of Mg, the lower were fasting levels of insulin. In young, nondiabetic African Americans, low dietary Mg was associated with insulin resistance and insulin responses to an oral glucose tolerance test. A low Mg diet in rats produced an increase in triglyceride and plasma glucose levels. In rats, a maternal restriction of dietary Mg was able to cause insulin resistance in pups. Suárez et al suggested that the worsening of glucose metabolism induced by Mg dietary restriction in experimental rats is due to an impairment of both, insulin secretion and insulin action.
Deficiencies of Mg status including both hypomagnesemia and/or reduced dietary Mg intake have been linked to an enhanced risk to develop DM2 or glucose intolerance. Higher Mg intakes were conversely associated with a reduced incidence of DM2.
Similar findings were obtained in the CARDIA study, during a 20-year follow-up, which also confirmed the reverse relationship of dietary Mg with inflammation markers.
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How To Take Magnesium For Diabetes
The most effective way to supplement magnesium is in smaller doses, split throughout the day. This is especially true for those who have pre-diabetes or diabetes and excrete magnesium at a faster rate. You want to keep a steady drip feed of magnesium to supply your cells.
It is easy to take Natual Calm magnesium this way simply by dissolving a tsp of the powder in a quarter cup of hot water and then pouring it into an 8 oz bottle of water and sipping your magnesium throughout the day.
What Is The Link Between Magnesium Insulin Resistance And Prediabetes
Magnesium is an essential co-helper in the pathways involved in carbohydrate processing. It makes cells more sensitive to insulin, facilitates insulin secretion from the beta cells in the pancreas and enables insulin to carry out its action stimulating fat, muscle, and liver cells to absorb excess glucose from the blood.
When magnesium levels are low or deficient, the cells in the body have a reduced capacity to absorb glucose from the bloodstream the pancreas cannot produce enough insulin, and insulin is less able to do its job.
All these factors lead to insulin resistance.
Notably, magnesium deficiencies also reduce the production of antioxidants , which further increases inflammation and promotes insulin resistance.
Prediabetes occurs when blood glucose levels are higher than normal but are not high enough to be classified as type 2 diabetes. And it tends to arise in people with insulin resistance or those whose pancreas doesnt produce enough insulin to maintain normal blood glucose levels. Once cells lose insulin sensitivity, glucose levels in the blood remain elevated, leading to type 2 diabetes over time.
Past studies show that people with low magnesium levels have a higher risk of prediabetes.
The researchers found that a 0.1 mmol/l decrease in blood magnesium levels was associated with a 12% increased risk of prediabetes even after accounting for confounding factors. They also found a significant link between insulin resistance and magnesium levels.
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Mechanisms Of Mg Deficiency In Dm2
Reduced Mg intake and/or augmented Mg urinary loss are among the most important causes of Mg deficits in DM2, while Mg absorption and retention seems to be maintained.
A relationship between Mg levels in the plasma and the development of DM2 in the general population has been suggested. DM2 is frequently accompanied by renal calcium and Mg loss, but the mechanism of this wasting is still not completely elucidated.
Both hyperglycemia and hyperinsulinemia may increase urinary Mg excretion. Urinary Mg excretion and fasting blood glucose have been found to be inversely related to serum Mg levels. Thus, hyperglycemia decreases Mg tubular reabsorption. A good metabolic control is associated with a reduction of the urinary Mg wasting.
In streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats, Lee et al found an increase in renal Mg transporters. The alteration was corrected by insulin administration. Insulin resistance and hyperinsulinemia may also affect Mg transport.
Which Type Of Magnesium Is Best For Diabetics
Magnesium citrate is said to be more absorbent than magnesium oxide. Magnesium taurate is the most effective form of the mineral for treating elevated blood sugar. According to the capsule manufacturer, this version is also easier on the stomach and can help with anxiety, fear, and maintaining a healthy heart rhythm.
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Why Are People With Diabetes More Likely To Be Deficient In Magnesium
The kidneys are important organs that are charged with maintaining a balance of magnesium, according to a study published in the journal Biological Trace Element Research. But people with diabetes end up losing large amounts of magnesium in their urine. People with diabetes may tend to be deficient in magnesium, especially if they have uncontrolled and high blood sugars, because their body may be clearing it out along with excess sugars in the urine, Sheth says.
Its especially worrisome if youre on diuretics more urine equals more chances for magnesium to escape or elderly, Sheth notes. As we get older, our stomach acid production decreases, and this can lead to a decreased absorption of magnesium from the food we eat, Sheth adds.
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Groups At Risk For Magnesium Deficiency
People with diabetes
- When there is a large amount of glucose in the body, the kidney compensates by getting rid of the glucose through increasing urinary output. Magnesium is also lost through this increased urinary output, following the glucose . It has even been suggested that altered magnesium levels may promote the development of type 2 diabetes .
- It has been found that older adults have decreased intakes of magnesium compared to younger adults . The amount of magnesium absorbed in the intestine also decreases with age, while the amount excreted by the kidney increases.
People taking certain medications
- Certain medications including diuretics, antibiotics, and proton pump inhibitors may also have the potential to decrease the amount of magnesium in the body .
People with gastrointestinal issues
- Crohns disease, celiac disease, and individuals who have undergone resection or bypass of the small intestine may not be absorbing magnesium sufficiently .
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Is Magnesium Good For My Blood Sugar Levels If I Have Diabetes
Magnesium has many important functions in your body, including managing your blood sugar levels. Our nutritionist looks into whether those with diabetes should take magnesium.
Q: Is it true that magnesium is good for my blood sugar levels if I have diabetes?
Magnesium is a mineral that plays many important roles in your body, including managing your insulin and carbohydrate metabolism. Its involved in your bodys ability to secrete insulin and may help your cells use insulin more effectively .
Magnesium appears to help manage blood sugar levels among people with diabetes. Also, those who tend to consume less magnesium typically have poorer blood sugar regulation and a higher risk of type 2 diabetes than people who consume higher amounts .
For example, one review of 26 studies including 1,168 people found that those with the highest regular intake of magnesium had a 22% lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes than those who regularly consumed the least magnesium .
Increasing magnesium intake through food or supplements may help people with diabetes improve their blood sugar regulation.
For example, a 12-week study in 54 people with type 2 diabetes found that taking 300 mg of magnesium daily significantly lowered fasting blood sugar levels, as well as post-meal blood sugar levels, compared with taking a placebo pill .
Mg Deficiency And Cardio
Mg deficiency may be also a factor implicated in DM2 complications. We found a relation between ionic changes and echocardiographic indices alterations. We observed an significant association of reduced cellular Mg with cardiac hypertrophy in DM2 patients.
Cellular Mg measured in vivo in skeletal muscle and in the brain with 31P-NMR, was directly related to aortic distensibility.
Reduced Mg levels were also associated with an increased prevalence of arrhythmias in DM2 obese subjects, and with a more rapid decline of renal function. Thus, hypomagnesemia is currently considered an accurate predictor of progression of diabetic nephropathy. Mg deficits have also been associated with cognitive decline, multimorbidity and agin.
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Magnesium Supplements For Diabetics
According to the piece on About.com,Healthy adults who eat a varied diet do not generally need to take a magnesium supplement.
Dr. Dean strongly disagrees. She says that the Recommended Daily Allowance is 350 to 400 milligrams per day, but for best health, we may need roughly double this amount. She says the Standard American Diet provides very little magnesium. Soils depleted by factory farming may grow foods low in magnesium. Refined grains and processed foods have usually been stripped of most of their magnesium.
Dean isnt the only one recommending this mineral. Drs. Andrea Rosanoff, PhD, and Mildred Seelig, MD, authors of The Magnesium Factor, state, Mg has effects that parallel those of statins.
In the Journal of the American College of Nutrition, they wrote, Both statins and normal Mg levels prevent clotting, reduce inflammation and prevent plaques. But statins raise liver enzymes, can cause and have many other side effects, while Mg supplements tend to protect and have temporary diarrhea or mild GI distress as the only side effect.
The doctors point to studies showing that nations with low-magnesium/high-calcium diets the US, Finland, and the Netherlands, in particular have a lethal heart disease rate much higher than in nations with high-magnesium/low-calcium diets, such as Japan. Yet our medical system encourages statins and ignores magnesium.
Research Design And Methods
With approval of the protocol by the Mexican Social Security Institute Research Committee and after obtaining informed consent from subjects, a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial was carried out.
Type 2 diabetic subjects recruited from an outpatient Primary Level Medical Care Office in Durango, a city in Northern Mexico, were eligible to participate in the study if they had decreased serum magnesium levels. Based on previous results of healthy subjects from our population, in whom normal values ranged from 0.75 to 0.99 mmol/l, decreased serum magnesium levels were defined by magnesium concentration 0.74 mmol/l .
Before their inclusion at the study, all of the subjects were clinically evaluated and laboratory tested in order to determine the presence of chronic diarrhea, alcohol intake , use of diuretic and/or calcium antagonist drugs, and reduced renal function . In addition, subjects receiving magnesium supplementation were not included.
The primary trial end point was the change in insulin sensitivity and metabolic control. Sample size was estimated based on a statistical power of 80%, value 0.05, and allowing for nonimprovement in the serum insulin level of 35 and 75% for the subjects receiving magnesium supplementation and placebo, respectively. The required sample size to detect a treatment effect was 24 subjects per group .
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Magnesium Supplements May Help Blood Sugar Management For Pre
Data from a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial of 116 men and non-pregnant women indicated that 50% of the people in the magnesium chloride group improved their glucose status, compared with only 7% in the placebo group.
Our results support the hypothesis that oral magnesium supplementation improves the glycaemic status of individuals with prediabetes and hypomagnesaemia, a finding that may be of interest in the planning of public-health strategies focused on decreasing diabetes incidence, wrote the researchers in Diabetes & Metabolism.
Necessary for over 300 biochemical reactions
The findings are particularly important because a large proportion of the US population is not making the recommendations for this essential nutrient. According to NHANES data, 60% of Americans are not hitting the Institute of Medicines intake recommendations for magnesium.
The National Institutes of Health lists magnesium as being necessary for more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body, from helping maintain normal muscle and nerve function, to keeping heart rhythm steady, supporting a healthy immune system, and keeping bones strong. The mineral is also needed for blood sugar management, and healthy blood pressure.
Results showed that, compared with placebo, the magnesium chloride group displayed significant reductions in fasting and post-meal blood glucose levels, while insulin resistance also decreased.
Mg And Insulin Sensitivity
Hypomagnesemia in DM2 is present only in severe Mg deficits. A chronic latent Mg deficiency without alteration in serum total Mg is more commonly observed. These often undetected Mg insufficiencies have clinical importance, since Mg is a main co-factor in numerous enzymatic reactions . Mg also is deeply involved in the regulation of insulin signaling, in the phosphorylation of insulin receptor kinase, in the post receptorial action of insulin, and in insulin-mediated cellular glucose uptake.
The clinical consequence of a chronic Mg deficit is post-receptorial insulin resistance and consequent reduced glucose utilization in the cells, worsening the reduced insulin sensitivity present in DM2.
Another possible link between Mg deficiency and reduced insulin sensitivity is the presence of oxidative stress and/or inflammation. Thus, free radicals are often increased in DM2, hypertension, metabolic syndrome and aging, conditions also associated with Mg deficits. In particular, we demonstrated an age-dependent deficit of cellular Mg in persons aged 65 years and over, as well as in patients with essential hypertension or DM2, independently of age.
Nevertheless, independently of the mechanisms of Mg deficits in DM2, metabolic syndrome, essential hypertension and aging, it is apparent that this Mg deficiency may contribute to enhance the insulin resistance status of these conditions. Mg deficit could precede and cause post-receptorial resistance of insulin and alter glucose tolerance.
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