Unexpected Way To Prevent Diabetes
Insulin resistant diabetes is one of the fastest growing diseases among American men. In today’s article I’m going to share with you a little-known but proven way to protect yourself. By increasing your dietary intake of the mineral magnesium, you can keep yourself healthier. But don’t make the common mistakes many men make! I’ll give you a no-nonsense guide to safely and effectively increasing your magnesium intake so you can do it right.
The Power Of Magnesium
You’d think that if a simple nutrient deficiency was proven to lead to developing diabetes that there would be a public education campaign to notify the public, right? But not so. Yet for decades it has been known that a deficiency in magnesium is a significant contributor to the development of diabetes. Not only that, but studies have shown that increasing dietary magnesium protects against diabetes.
In a major study over 120,000 people were monitored for several decades. A huge amount of information was collected regularly. The researchers kept track of what the people ate, how much they exercised, their body fat, smoking habits, and family history.
Initially none of the people had developed insulin resistant diabetes. But after several decades thousands were diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.
At that point in the study the researchers wanted to find out what were the differences between the people who developed diabetes and those who did not. And after they accounted for all the variables, there was one thing that stood out.
The difference was magnesium.
The people who developed diabetes were deficient in magnesium.
Other studies have shown the same thing. Magnesium deficiencies are strongly associated with type 2 diabetes. It’s not that magnesium deficiencies in and of themselves cause diabetes. But a magnesium deficiency can significantly increase the risk.
Correcting a magnesium deficiency can greatly reduce the risk.
Correcting a Deficiency
According to nationwide research, a whopping 80 percent of American men are deficient in magnesium. That means that the chances are that you are deficient. But the good news is that you can correct that deficiency with some simple changes. And when you do that, your health will improve.
Numerous studies have shown that correcting magnesium deficiencies can significantly improve insulin sensitivity. That’s a good thing. The American Diabetes Association conducted a study that concluded that increasing magnesium intake improves insulin sensitivity. A major Japanese study revealed the same thing. And in yet another major American study it was found that increasing magnesium intake decreased the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Of course the first impulse of many people is to go grab a pill. And while supplemental magnesium can be helpful, that’s not the place to start.
To begin with, you’ll want to reduce your risks of losing excessive magnesium. Some medications are known to cause loss of magnesium. So if you take any medications - even over the counter - find out if they deplete magnesium. If they do, then consider alternatives.
Another reason some men lose a lot of magnesium is because of excessive alcohol consumption. Keep your alcohol consumption to no more than one drink per day at most.
Next, the very best way to increase your magnesium intake is from food sources. Research shows clearly that magnesium intake from food is health promoting. While supplemental magnesium may be helpful, it’s not clear.
Many lists of good magnesium sources include nuts and seeds as well as coffee and chocolate. While those foods may have other health benefits, they aren’t actually good dietary sources of magnesium. That’s because although they contain a lot of the mineral, it’s not absorbable. So your body can’t make use of it.
The best sources of magnesium are the following:
- Leafy green vegetables. Spinach, chard, and kale are excellent sources
- Beans of all kinds come in second
- Fish is a close third
- Avocados, dairy, bananas, and dried fruit are all good sources as well
Eat these foods regularly and you’ll be able to ensure that you’re eating enough magnesium to stay healthy.
Still, some people may want some added insurance. While supplemental magnesium shouldn’t be a stand-in for a high quality diet, it might not be a bad idea either. However, you’ll want to make sure that you select the right form of supplemental magnesium.
The trouble with most forms of supplemental magnesium is that they aren’t well absorbed. In fact, some types of magnesium are actually sold as laxatives! That’s because when magnesium isn’t absorbed, it draws water into the colon and works as a laxative. Not only does that not help to increase your magnesium levels, it can actually deplete your body of all minerals, including magnesium. So don’t make that mistake.
The worst forms of magnesium include magnesium hydroxide (milk of magnesia), magnesium oxide, and magnesium carbonate. Avoid any supplements that contain those forms.
The best forms are magnesium glycinate, magnesium malate, and magnesium citrate. Although these forms can still be laxative when taken in excess, small supplemental amounts (less than 400 mg) taken in divided doses with food are typically well absorbed.
Another way to absorb magnesium is through the skin. Epsom salts, though laxative when used internally, make a relaxing bath salt. And soaking in water to which epsom salts have been added may increase magnesium levels.
Although the drug companies don’t want you to know it, the very best ways to protect your health are natural. And one of the best ways to protect your health when it comes to diabetes risk is to make sure that you magnesium levels are adequate. To do that, make sure you’re taking care not to lose excessive magnesium. And then take steps to ensure that you are taking in enough magnesium from the right sources.