Lifestyle Changes 4 MIN READ 62 VIEWS November 29, 2021

Magnesium and Diabetes: What is the Correlation?

Written By Garima Bahal
Medically Reviewed By Dr. Aarti Nehra

Magnesium and Diabetes
Magnesium Types
Natural Sources of Magnesium for Diabetes
Magnesium and Diabetes Type 1
Magnesium and Diabetes Type 2
Role of Insulin in Maintaining Blood Sugar Levels
Conclusion

Magnesium is one of the most vital macrominerals that is required for various bodily functions. The body should get at least 100 mg of magnesium per day either through food sources or through a supplement. 50 to 60% of the magnesium derived gets stored by the skeletal system whereas the rest will be in the soft tissues, muscles, and body fluids.  Magnesium and diabetes are well connected, since maintenance of magnesium levels will help control diabetes. Read further to know how can magnesium reverse diabetes, food sources of magnesium, and the impact of magnesium on type 1 and type 2 diabetes.

Magnesium Types

There are various types of magnesium and if you want to know “how can magnesium reverse diabetes and which type can do it?”, then read on

The various types of magnesium are:

  • Magnesium chloride
  • Magnesium oxide
  • Magnesium taurate
  • Magnesium sulphate
  • Magnesium glycinate
  • Magnesium carbonate
  • Magnesium citrate
  • Magnesium aspartate
  • Magnesium lactate
  • Magnesium  threonate
  • Magnesium gluconate

All types of magnesium do not have the same properties. Each one is suited for different ailments. Some dissolve well in liquids and get easily absorbed into the system. When a comparison was made, it was observed that magnesium chloride, magnesium aspartate, magnesium citrate, and magnesium lactate are absorbed better than magnesium sulphate and magnesium oxide.

It was observed that 300 mg of magnesium chloride and 1000mg of magnesium oxide were the preferred types of magnesium for diabetes. They were able to control the blood sugar levels in diabetic patients. You can either get the required magnesium through diet or through supplements. 

Magnesium and diabetes go hand in hand and Magnesium reverse diabetes if an adequate level is maintained, more specifically it helps better sugar control and reduces the risk of development of type 2 Diabetes in prediabetics. Over absorption of magnesium through food will not have any adverse effect, as the excess absorbed will be relieved as waste through urine. But you should be careful when you are supplementing the required magnesium, as it can have adverse effects if the dosage is more than the required level. 

Please consult a physician for supplements if the magnesium deficiency is surfaced. Magnesium supplements are available in capsule, powdered, and liquid forms. Alternatively, it can be injected into the body as well. 

Natural Sources of Magnesium for Diabetes

The daily requirement of magnesium for females is 320 to 360 mg and for males, it is 410 to 420 mg. It can be easily sourced from the supplements available in the market. However, it is advisable to derive it as much as possible from a natural diet by including the following: 

  • Legumes
  • Seeds and nuts
  • Green leafy vegetables like spinach and collard greens
  • Breakfast cereals
  • Whole grains
  • Peanut butter
  • Avocado
  • Chicken breast
  • Broccoli
  • Yoghurt
  • Oatmeal

Even tap water, bottled water, and mineral water are good sources of magnesium, though the levels vary according to the source of water. Despite this, if the level is lower than the normal requirement, then you can resort to supplements.

Even before confirming the deficiency through a blood test, you will get warning signals like fatigue, cramps, nausea, and loss of appetite.

Magnesium and Diabetes Type 1

Type 1 Diabetes is generally genetic and is an autoimmune disease that targets the pancreas and prevents them from producing insulin. The environmental factors are also believed to cause type 1 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes normally surfaces at a young age and lasts throughout life. 

Magnesium and Diabetes type 1 are interrelated. Magnesium deficiency can increase the risk of development of cardiovascular issues in Type 1 diabetes.  Oxidation of LDL-cholesterol occurs due to a deficiency in magnesium. This causes plaque deposition that narrows the blood vessels supplying blood to the heart, impacting the normal functioning of the heart. Reduced blood supply to the heart gives rise to cardiovascular issues.

Type 1 diabetes and the associated health issues can be averted by increasing the magnesium levels in the body. You can derive the required level of magnesium either through diet or supplements. 

Magnesium and Diabetes Type 2

There are several factors that contribute to type 2 diabetes. It could be genetic and could surface due to lifestyle issues like obesity and less physical activity. Magnesium deficiency increases the risk of development of  type 2 diabetes. Magnesium depletion could be due to intake of a diet that is low in magnesium or due to excretion of higher amounts of magnesium through urination. Depleted levels of magnesium give rise to insulin resistance that leads to diabetes type 2 and so magnesium and diabetes type 2 are associated.

You can control type 2 diabetes with physical activities that can control weight loss and mitigate both the causes of diabetes i.e., obesity and less physical activity. As for increasing the magnesium levels in the system, it can be done by either deriving it from natural sources or by intake of supplements.

Role of Insulin in Maintaining Blood Sugar Levels

Insulin is a hormone that helps regulate blood sugar levels along with another hormone, glucagon. Carbohydrate content in the food we intake is converted into sugar during the process of digestion. Glucose enters the bloodstream and when its level increases, pancreas get a signal to produce insulin.

Insulin instructs the cells in our body to absorb glucose from the bloodstream to maintain the sugar level. Glucose is converted into energy by some cells and the cells in the muscles and liver store it as glycogen. Glycogen provides fuel to your body as and when required. 

Deficiency in magnesium builds up insulin resistance i.e. body cells do not utilize insulin effectively which may lead to increase in blood sugar levels.

Conclusion

An adequate level of magnesium for diabetes control is very important and so it is highly recommended to plan a diet that will provide the daily requirement of this mineral. Diabetes is a highly demanding disease and needs constant maintenance. Diabetes can lead to several eye-related issues such as retinopathy, glaucoma, and diabetic macular oedema. Magnesium and diabetes are interrelated and this is why ensuring maintenance of magnesium levels with proper diet and supplements is important to lead a diabetes-free life.

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