The importance of Magnesium in Diabetics
Magnesium is so important for the human body to function optimally, but in this article I wanted to focus on how important magnesium is for fighting and preventing diabetes. When we think of diabetes we think of high blood sugar, obesity and too many carbohydrates but not of a common mineral like magnesium. Typical treatment and management for diabetes is largely focused on carbohydrate inputs, and while what you eat is important, just avoiding sugary foods isn’t the only answer. To manage diabetes effectively, you definitely need to make dietary adjustments but this disease will also lead to other nutrient deficiencies that need to be addressed in order to function optimally.
What the studies are saying
Studies have shown magnesium deficiencies to be common in people with type 2 diabetes and is more prevalent in those with poorly controlled glycaemic profiles. Diabetics that are experiencing regular blood sugar highs are more likely to be deficient in magnesium as their body may be clearing it out along with excess sugar in the urine.
There is a growing mountain of evidence that points to the role of magnesium in preventing type 2 diabetes. With studies indicating that people who consume a diet rich in magnesium were at a lower risk of developing diabetes. Children can also benefit from getting enough magnesium with research indicating that those who did not get adequate amounts of magnesium where more likely to have insulin resistance, putting them at risk for developing type 2 diabetes.
One study showed magnesium supplementation increased blood magnesium levels as expected, and reduced fasting glucose levels, concluding that magnesium improved insulin sensitivity and metabolic control in type 2 diabetics 
Another meta-analysis of over 280,000 participants and nearly 11,000 cases of diabetes showed that supplementing magnesium resulted in a decreased chance of developing type 2 diabetes. 
Our body produces the hormone insulin to bring down blood sugar which is what diabetics inject to help manage blood sugar. Magnesium actually plays a key role in regulating the bodies natural insulin production so it’s especially important diabetics get enough. 
Ways to get magnesium
There are many foods high in magnesium such as dark leafy green, seeds, sweet potatoes and cacao which should be the number one go to, as well as a supplement if you are deficient. Our magnesium page has plenty of information about magnesium rich foods and which magnesium supplements work best.
Unfortunately, many diabetics can get into a terrible cycle of losing magnesium, becoming deficient and then struggling even more to keep blood sugar down if they have low levels of magnesium. Make sure you get enough of this incredible mineral.
For more everything you need to know about magnesium and magnesium supplements, check out our comprehensive information page here.
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Ron Goedeke MD, BSc Hons MBChB, FNZCAM
Dr Ron Goedeke, specialises in alternative and functional medicine. He is a foundation member of the New Zealand college of Appearance medicine and has been a member of the American Academy of Anti-aging medicine since 1999. With over 20 years of experience in the anti-aging field, Dr Ron Goedeke is recognized as one of New Zealand’s leaders in this new and growing field of medicine.
Disclaimer: The information provided is for educational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or qualified healthcare provider with any questions or concerns about your health. Never disregard or delay seeking medical advice because of something you have heard or read on this website.