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Healthy Diet Plans >>  Diabetic Diet >>  Minerals

Mineral For Diabetes

Diabetes mellitus is the physical ailment that sets in once the body starts building up a resistance to the insulin generated by the pancreas. This results in the sugars flooding the bloodstream as they cannot be absorbed into the tissues of the body. With the onset of diabetes, consistent medical treatment coupled with adequate diet and exercise becomes the norm in the life of a diabetic patient. Diabetes is also accompanied by excessive thirst and micturition, in most cases. This results in the depletion of the body’s reserves of essential nutrients and minerals.
Hence, it is imperative that the diet that is chosen should provide all the minerals for diabetics.
  • Chromium: Among the vital minerals for diabetes mellitus, chromium tops the list and is commonly known as the ‘diabetes mineral.’ Minerals and vitamins comprise the category of micronutrients that are essential for the regulation and proper functioning of diverse mechanisms in the body. Chromium helps the body to convert the carbohydrates from the food into glucose. It is also essential in the regulation of insulin production in the body. The effectiveness of the functioning of insulin in the body is thus attributed to the presence of chromium. Chromium is found in abundance in cheese, nuts, whole grains, oysters, mushroom and yeast. This mineral also increases the absorption of glucose into the cells of the body.
  • Vanadium: Vanadium is another mineral that plays a key role in the management of diabetes. This mineral functions on the same lines as the hormone insulin. Foods that are excellent sources of vanadium include lobster, vegetables, butter, cheese, and skim milk. Vanadium is seen to have a positive effect on lowering fasting glucose levels. It also enhances the sensitivity to insulin in the case of type 2 diabetes.
  • Magnesium: Magnesium is another mineral for diabetes mellitus that helps persons with hypoglycemia or low sugar levels. It digests starch better and stabilizes the sugar levels in the bloodstream. Whole grain, nuts, seeds, cocoa, brown rice, seafood and green vegetables are rich in magnesium and should be included in a diabetic diet menu.
  • Zinc: Zinc is vital among the minerals for diabetes control as it ensures that insulin is aptly released into the bloodstream. Meat, eggs, whole grains, and spinach are good sources of zinc. Diabetic persons should include zinc in their diet and preferably consume it in its raw form.

Diabetic Neuropathy:

Diabetic neuropathy occurs in individuals suffering from diabetes mellitus when excessively high sugar levels in the bloodstream result in nerve damage. This decreases blood flow to the extremities of the body. Diabetic neuropathy often commences with a tingling sensation in the toes, and later the person becomes unaware of cuts and pain. Vitamins C and E along with zinc and magnesium are the vitamins and minerals that are effective for diabetic neuropathy. The administration of these micronutrients as supplements is believed to mitigate the symptoms of diabetic neuropathy to a great extent. Though supplements can be prescribed by a medical practitioner, it is always beneficial to obtain the minerals through natural food sources.

Diabetic Retinopathy:

The onset of diabetes mellitus in an individual often paves way for a host of associated diseases. Diabetic retinopathy is an eye disease that is commonly seen in diabetic persons. Here, the blood vessels that supply blood and nutrients to the retina, the light sensitive part of the eyes, are damaged. In some individuals, the blood vessels may spill fluid or else new vessels are formed over the existing ones. The damage occurs as the imbalance in blood sugars weakens the flow of blood around the retina. This may lead to loss of vision, which can be quite sudden, but the symptoms improve on being treated in time.

Vitamin A is extremely beneficial for the eyes. The beta carotenoids in carrot and leafy greens have good antioxidant properties and protect the eyes from damage. Lutein and vitamin A can also help to eliminate surplus cell growth from the cells in the body. Minerals for diabetic retinopathy include zinc and selenium, which help the body to assimilate vitamin A and E more rapidly.

Mineral Supplements For Diabetes

Mineral supplements for diabetes can be consumed on the prescription of a certified physician. Mineral supplements need to be taken only when vegetables grown on depleted soils, fail to provide the micronutrient requirement for an individual. Diabetic persons who are recuperating from any major surgery or elderly persons may need to take mineral supplements as they cannot be totally obtained or assimilated from their diet. Common mineral supplements for diabetes include vitamins A, C, and E, zinc, magnesium, chromium, and omega-3- fatty acid supplements. It should always be remembered that mineral supplements are no replacement for the naturally occurring minerals obtained from a well planned and wholesome diet.
Submitted on January 16, 2014