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Six Must-have Minerals for Diabetics

Minerals play a crucial role in diabetic health. While there is as yet no cure for diabetes, there are six minerals that can halt the progression of diabetic complications and stabilize blood sugar.

The majority of people don’t get enough nutrition. Few meet the minimum RDA guidelines government health agencies say they need to stay healthy. The deficiencies of vitamins are largely responsible for many of today’s diseases. While diabetics are severely depleted of minerals, you don’t need to be diabetic to experience the same complications if you lack the same minerals the diabetic does.

We all need a good supply of minerals to maintain optimum health. The body cannot effectively fight the viruses and bacteria that seek to destroy it. This is particularly true for the diabetic. The diabetic kidney is under a great deal of stress as it attempts to get rid of excess glucose from the bloodstream. Unfortunately, the kidneys also flush out many of the vitamins and minerals along with glucose. This increases the deficiencies. Diabetics need to replace what they lose through the urine by taking twice as many vitamins and minerals than the non-diabetic.

While doctors parrot the need to eat a proper diet and get some needed exercise, they often put little to no emphasis on the need to supplement. Drugs are pushed as the only solution to lower blood sugar. While they do lower blood sugar, no drug has ever prevented any diabetic from going blind or having limbs amputated. A good supplement routine can help prevent those losses of limbs and eyesight. They can prevent the deterioration of the kidneys and the heart.

Diabetes can be controlled through taking six key supplements that can prevent diabetic complications.

Chromium

90% of Americans do not meet the RDA of 50mcg (micrograms) of chromium every day. The Food and Nutrition Board of the National Academy of Sciences considers 50 to 200 mcg to be necessary to maintain health. For diabetics, supplementation should be in the range of 200 to 400 mcg a day.

Magnesium

Low levels of magnesium increase the risk of retinopathy. Blindness occurs from the damage to the small capillaries that feed the eyes. Magnesium helps fight eye nerve damage. The RDA recommendation for healthy men is 350 mg per day and 300 mg for women. Diabetics should supplement between 300 to 600 mg. The average intake of magnesium for many people is between 145 to265 mg a day, which is woefully inadequate.

Potassium

It’s a major component that resides inside all cell membranes. It counters the effects of sodium. Unfortunately, sodium is consumed far too much and is found in too many foods. High levels of sodium lead to high blood pressure and heart disease. Potassium can neutralize the effects of sodium. The more sodium there is, the less likely the cells of the body will open up to remove excess glucose from the bloodstream.

Manganese

Studies done on animals have shown that low levels of manganese lead to low production of insulin by the pancreas. Manganese functions in many enzyme systems including those involved in maintaining blood sugar control and thyroid hormone balance. The majority of diabetics have only half the manganese of normal people.

Vanadium

Well before the discovery of insulin, vanadium was used to help diabetics control blood sugar. Today, this mineral is lacking in the average American diet. In the form of vanadyl sulfate it helps to control the rise in blood sugar after meals. Good sources are found in mushrooms, shellfish, dill, parsley and black pepper.

Zinc

The varied uses of zinc ranges from sexual development to immune functioning. A deficiency of zinc brings a loss of appetite, increases infection rates and results in poor wound healing. Low zinc levels can produce skin disorders and the loss of both taste and smell. Zinc helps prevent the destruction of the beta cells responsible for the production of insulin in the pancreas. It helps prevent the pancreas from burning out when it is forced by drugs like glyburide to produce more insulin. Shellfish, pumpkin seeds, ginger root, nuts and seeds are good sources of zinc.

These minerals are far from a complete list, but they pose the best solution for the diabetic and should be a regular staple of the diet. However, it needs to be remembered that no supplement, nor standard medication will do much good unless the lifestyle that promotes the disease is changed. Smoking, high stress levels, the lack of exercise, lack of sleep and a polluted environment must accompany a diet with mineral supplements if life is to remain healthy and happy.

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