Who would have known that good old magnesium is amazing for weight loss, insulin resistance, and type 2 diabetes? Many studies demonstrate the benefits of magnesium for weight loss and insulin resistance in type 2 diabetics.
Magnesium is one of the most common nutritional deficiencies, which seems coincidental that obesity, insulin resistance, and diabetes is becoming increasingly problematic. The mineral magnesium is a co-factor for many enzymes involved in glucose metabolism.
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The blood-lowering hormone insulin stimulates magnesium uptake in insulin-sensitive tissues. An impaired response of various tissues to insulin is known as insulin resistance.
Intracellular magnesium has been shown to be low in type 2 diabetes which is different than blood magnesium levels. However, both low plasma and intracellular magnesium levels have been associated with increased insulin resistance.
Magnesium for insulin resistance
A study on oral magnesium intake in type 2 diabetes reduced fasting glucose, HbA1c, and insulin levels. A reduction in insulin levels demonstrates that insulin resistance was decreased as insulin levels rise alongside increased insulin resistance.
In the study, the type 2 diabetics that received magnesium supplementation of 2.5 grams of magnesium chloride showed an:
- 15 % increase in serum magnesium
- 37%decrease in fasting glucose
- 30% decrease in HbAlc
- Decrease in the HOMA-IR index by 9.5 % (measurement of insulin resistance)
These reductions in type 2 diabetics were more significant than the control subjects that did not supplement magnesium.
The decrease in magnesium concentration results in defective insulin receptors causing negative effects on glucose metabolism and blood sugar levels due to increased insulin resistance.
This study demonstrates the benefits of magnesium for insulin resistance. Anyone who has high blood sugar levels is a type 2 diabetic or insulin-resistant should have both serum and intracellular magnesium levels checked. Supplementing magnesium is beneficial for insulin resistance when blood or intracellular magnesium levels are low.
Type 2 diabetes is on the rise, and magnesium deficiency is a common nutritional deficiency affecting approximately 70-80 percent of the population. 2.5 grams of magnesium chloride restores serum magnesium and improved insulin sensitivity in type 2 diabetics.
The intake of processed sugar and refined carbohydrates further depletes magnesium levels. According to the author of the magnesium miracle, 23 molecules are required to process 1 molecule of glucose. I highly recommend reading the magnesium miracle to find out how common magnesium deficiency is and all the health problems caused by low magnesium levels. Sometimes a safe and effective mineral such as magnesium does the trick!
Magnesium for weight loss
A study done in obese children versus lean children showed significantly lower serum magnesium compared to thin children. The obese children in this study had higher levels of insulin resistance determined by higher fasting insulin than lean children.
A potential cause for lower magnesium levels in obese children is low magnesium intake via the diet.
The obese children consumed a higher percentage of calories from fat and a lower percentage of calories from carbohydrates and fiber. Lean children consumed more magnesium from leafy green vegetables, fish, beans, yogurt, nuts, and peanut butter.
Eating magnesium-rich foods is important for weight loss and reducing insulin resistance associated with low magnesium levels.
While the study measured serum magnesium correlated with obese and insulin-resistant children, they noted that measuring intracellular magnesium was more effective for determining magnesium deficiency.
Magnesium is one of the most abundant minerals present in living cells. About 65% of magnesium is in the bone, 34% in intracellular space, and only 1% in the extracellular fluid.
The recommended dietary allowance of magnesium in normal healthy adults is 350 mg/day for men and 300 mg/day for women. Not surprisingly, the average intake of magnesium is often under the RDA. Someone who is magnesium deficient would have to get 300 or 350 mg of magnesium per day via diet or supplement to replenish magnesium stores.
Intracellular magnesium is closely related to the level of fasting blood glucose. Both plasma and intracellular magnesium deficiency is associated with type 2 diabetes. Weight gain and type 2 diabetes go hand in hand, so magnesium is beneficial for weight loss and insulin resistance.
There are so many additional benefits of magnesium. Eating magnesium-rich foods and supplementing when necessary are beneficial for weight loss, insulin resistance, and much more! Magnesium is required for over 800 functions in the body and also helps to support a healthy heart, the nervous system, and muscle relaxation. Here is a list of the top vegan foods high in magnesium for weight loss.
Optimal magnesium by Seeking Health contains bioavailable forms of magnesium to help support optimal magnesium levels in the body.
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There are many underlying causes of weight gain and insulin resistance including a fatty liver, food sensitivities and inflammation. Magnesium deficiency is one of the underlying causes of weight gain, insulin resitance and type 2 diabetes especially when processed carbohydrates and refined sugar is consumed.
This chocolate quinoa smoothie high in magnesium is fantastic for weight loss.