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Does magnesium deficiency cause insulin resistance?

by (20411)
Updated about 6 hours ago
Created August 22, 2011 at 1:00 PM

If I understand Dr. K's blog post below, that is what he is asserting:

http://jackkruse.com/gnolls-com-opens-the-door-to-obesity-fight/

It seems plausible, and of course as a T2, I'm very interested...

Any papers that support this? (Wow, Dr K. - you have your own tag!)

2b2c2e4aa87e9aa4c99cae48e980f70d
1059 · November 02, 2011 at 8:04 PM

Nancy, unless you also happen to be taking an early moring Vitamin D dose...

2b2c2e4aa87e9aa4c99cae48e980f70d
1059 · November 02, 2011 at 8:02 PM

Evelyn are you The Quilt's self-appointed auditor?

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4
20411 · September 14, 2011 at 2:05 PM

Well, you don't have the best reputation among the blogs I tend to frequent. Kudos to you for being a voice in the wilderness who is finally getting some respect. Nobody owns the truth in this nutrition/metabolism mess and it's going to be a while before all of this gets sorted out.

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4
20411 · September 14, 2011 at 2:00 PM

Yeah, well, I used to think you were just a ranting quack, until several fairly respectable people started agreeing with certain points you've been making. I'm pretty sure that nobody has the full picture nailed just yet, no matter how self-assured they are.

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78417 · September 11, 2011 at 9:55 PM

Enzyme downregulation and microbiota change. It will probably be fixed by gradually introducing carbs.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094
78417 · September 11, 2011 at 9:52 PM

IR causes obesity, at least in subset of people. Check out for instance this paper: http://www.jci.org/articles/view/10842/version/1

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094
78417 · September 11, 2011 at 8:23 PM

I am totally with you on that. NOTE: too much magnesium may lead to impaired bone metabolism.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094
78417 · September 11, 2011 at 8:19 PM

Totally with you on that. I take my from carbonated water.

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5
8879 · September 11, 2011 at 3:11 PM

One of free's studies above was in diabetes prone rats. Mg supplementation forestalled diabetes in all but one of the rats while controls all became diabetic. Yet Mg supplementation of already diabetic rats did not improve their situation. For me the lesson is supplement with Mg. I've yet to see where it can hurt, it's cheap so it's not going to break the bank, and it seems to do a world of good.

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5
8879 · September 11, 2011 at 3:07 PM

I missed your comments here Dave. I'm going to take a look at that paper if I can get the full text. I'm working on a general cause/effect post that includes Mg, VitD and BCAA's as examples. It's something I add to from time to time and hopefully I'll have something to publish to the blog soon. I'll try to remember to come back and link to it here for any interested. My gut feeling and initial lit research has me leaning strongly towards the deficiencies/excesses being an effect rather than the cause of the conditions they are associated with. Strangely honored ? Hmmmm :-)

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20411 · August 24, 2011 at 1:02 AM

Hey CarbSane, this may not be the smoking gun, but I'd say it's pretty warm: http://www.springerlink.com/content/mjdtugth6fbdw2le/ "This study reveals a strong relationship between decreased serum magnesium and MS. [non-diabetic Metabolic Syndrome]. So, (1) Mg deficiency can cause IR. (2) Strong correlation of MetSyndrome and Mg deficiency. Maybe it always precedes it? (It certainly precedes it in many or most cases - I'm open to the possibility that a T2 might have enough Mg. But wouldn't the IR worsen intracellular Mg status? So maybe it's a moot point.

8949bf87b0e0aefcad10f29975e4fa2b
8979 · August 23, 2011 at 4:45 PM

Ask this as a new question, and you will probably get more takers

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5
8879 · August 23, 2011 at 1:06 PM

Travis, thanks for the reply. How to explain why so many long term low carbers seem to get more and more glucose intolerant with time? They certainly aren't consuming fructose!

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5
8879 · August 23, 2011 at 1:00 PM

Jack, YOU made the claim on your website. Your readers would presume that you have not just one but several citations in mind when you stated that "Mg deficiency always predates IR". Thanks for clarifying that you have nothing.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 23, 2011 at 2:40 AM

Im not the one with the question in her mind. You are. I gave you plenty of leads.....take the plunge. I am not your librarian

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4
20411 · August 23, 2011 at 1:26 AM

I guess that is the crux of my question. Is magnesium THE cause of IR. One of many colluding causal factors (including, say fructose, alcohol). Or even simply a result of IR, making it worse. I'm guessing that it is causal, but not alone. (As usual, the body is not simple). And I'm strangely honored by the presence of CarbSane!

Medium avatar
39841 · August 23, 2011 at 12:39 AM

I will say that my stance against fructose has softened a bit and that I doubt now very much that one could get IR from vitamin C-bearing fruits.

Medium avatar
39841 · August 23, 2011 at 12:36 AM

There must be exceptions, but my assumption is that the vast majority of it occurs as a result of hyperuricemia from heavy fructose intake coupled with ascorbate deficiency and a sedentary life (that doesn't restore muscle insulin sensitivity).

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5
8879 · August 23, 2011 at 12:12 AM

Travis -- Do you put IR solely at the feet of fructose?

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5
8879 · August 23, 2011 at 12:10 AM

And yet amongst the thousands, you can't provide one citation specifically to back up your blanket assertion. Do you not see the problem here?

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5
8879 · August 22, 2011 at 11:35 PM

@Jack: No I asked for specific references to support your assertion that Mg deficiency always predates insulin resistance. You sent me to any recently published medical school text. I asked if Guyton & Hall qualified. I don't have the time to follow links through abstracts and texts when I'm looking for specifics. Of course anyone could do a Google scholar search an Mg and IR and find a shitload of citations for a correlation. One citation backing up that assertion is all I'm looking for.

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1112 · August 22, 2011 at 11:23 PM

Thanks Dr. K. I have not found this anywhere else and I would say it is rather important to know this! So I suppose take first dose first thing in the morning before protein breakfast and last dose just before bed to assure absorption.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 9:31 PM

yes.....i have all my patients take Mg on empty stomach with water....you cant take it with Ca or with Vit D at all.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 9:30 PM

That bothers me even more.....honestly.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 9:29 PM

Its a pretty known cornerstone. Nice find Free......plus one.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 9:28 PM

Dave I did not elucidate it......I just allowed some sunshine to shine back on it. It seemed that on that particular SG blog comment section they all we blind to how it all starts. I learned it just like most other docs did and I remember it........maybe not like the others did. Posting about it just shown some light back upon it.

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20411 · August 22, 2011 at 6:41 PM

That's a really great post!

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 6:40 PM

Biochemistry 101 wins again!

Be1dbd31e4a3fccd4394494aa5db256d
17949 · August 22, 2011 at 6:35 PM

Nice! Yeah I would say that magnesium deficiency causing insulin resistance is definitively proven at this point.

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20411 · August 22, 2011 at 5:20 PM

+1 for commenting on a post about your blog. And I really miss the old jokes about floppy disks... I suppose I really asked this question to raise awareness. I knew there was a magnesium-diabetes connection, but thank you for elucidating the mechanism.

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2231 · August 22, 2011 at 4:15 PM

i take ZMA, i cant live without it

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5531 · August 22, 2011 at 3:51 PM

I also love Natural Calm but I know a lot of people that it doesn't agree with, I'd like to get some non-website info on NC. I thought Mg citrate was the most readily absorbed form but can't find literature on it.

Medium avatar
19479 · August 22, 2011 at 3:33 PM

@Quilt, what is it about natural calm that you don't like? I want to learn as much as I can about this subject and am just curious.

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725 · August 22, 2011 at 3:30 PM

Chris Kresser recommends magensium glycinate or malate because they are better absorbed and have less side effects http://thehealthyskeptic.org/9-steps-to-perfect-health-4-supplement-wisely

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1112 · August 22, 2011 at 3:18 PM

So is she correct about taking Mg on an empty stomach? It is the areas where I have no expertise that make it difficult for me to accept information that is 8 yrs. old from an authority when they are wrong about other areas. She may very well be a great resource on magnesium. I would like to see some corroboration from other experts. I will look into the studies suggested.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 2:55 PM

Not a big fan of natural calm at all.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 2:55 PM

This is what I said in the blog and to carb sane. To me the comments in SG blog were very disturbing from a clinical stand point.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 2:54 PM

The ATPase that controls all energy metabolism requires mag too. It is vital and is the first thing that goes bye bye in chronic Insulin elevation and then the T2 cascade begins

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 2:52 PM

Don't throw the baby out with the bath water......the book is an awesome resource for magnesium not overall health care. Do you throw out the dictionary because then word ain't is in the now?

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 2:51 PM

Plenty of them. Thousands in fact. Carb sane asked for one in the comment section and I pulled one off my hard drive. Any biochemistry book or endocrine book has them listed as well. Very commonly written about but it appears not the tip of many people tongues who talk about IR.

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6869a1f2294b3a717a53645589a91d18
10
1689 · August 22, 2011 at 3:34 PM

Here's a few relevant studies:

  • Mg in diabetic rats: better glucose control and less diabetes development.
  • Low Mg diets in healthy humans for 4 weeks: 25% reduced insulin sensitivity.
  • Mg in diabetics: increased insulin sensitivity. Specifically,
  • Mg over 16 weeks in diabetics: 22% HbA1c improvement.
  • Mg in insulin resistant people for 4 months: 43% reduced insulin resistance, 32% reduced fasting insulin, 39% reduced triglycerides.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7485490
http://hyper.ahajournals.org/cgi/reprint/21/6/1024
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12663588
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15223977
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1595589
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12663588
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15223977

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 9:29 PM

Its a pretty known cornerstone. Nice find Free......plus one.

Be1dbd31e4a3fccd4394494aa5db256d
17949 · August 22, 2011 at 6:35 PM

Nice! Yeah I would say that magnesium deficiency causing insulin resistance is definitively proven at this point.

6371f0ae0c075ded1b8cd30aafd4bf16
4
4283 · August 22, 2011 at 5:35 PM

Here's my N equals 1 experiment. I restarted Natural Calm this week and as a Type 1 diabetic have had so much better utilization of my insulin.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 6:40 PM

Biochemistry 101 wins again!

1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f
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20353 · August 22, 2011 at 2:38 PM

We know that by supplementing with magnesium, we improve insulin sensitivity because insulin requires magnesium for binding and for synthesis.

The Magnesium Factor Magnesium researchers, Mildred S. Seelig MD. MPH. Andrea Rosanoff, PhD.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 2:54 PM

The ATPase that controls all energy metabolism requires mag too. It is vital and is the first thing that goes bye bye in chronic Insulin elevation and then the T2 cascade begins

Aa3a90ba6f6a6d488f28cfcdc4e05627
3
200 · August 22, 2011 at 3:55 PM
Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 9:30 PM

That bothers me even more.....honestly.

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4
20411 · August 22, 2011 at 6:41 PM

That's a really great post!

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3
2b2c2e4aa87e9aa4c99cae48e980f70d
1059 · November 02, 2011 at 8:02 PM

Evelyn are you The Quilt's self-appointed auditor?

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5
8879 · August 23, 2011 at 1:00 PM

Jack, YOU made the claim on your website. Your readers would presume that you have not just one but several citations in mind when you stated that "Mg deficiency always predates IR". Thanks for clarifying that you have nothing.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 23, 2011 at 2:40 AM

Im not the one with the question in her mind. You are. I gave you plenty of leads.....take the plunge. I am not your librarian

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5
8879 · August 23, 2011 at 12:10 AM

And yet amongst the thousands, you can't provide one citation specifically to back up your blanket assertion. Do you not see the problem here?

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 2:55 PM

This is what I said in the blog and to carb sane. To me the comments in SG blog were very disturbing from a clinical stand point.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094
2
78417 · September 11, 2011 at 1:50 PM

Just out:

Nine studies uncovered a significant protective effect for increased magnesium intake against the risk of diabetes. A 22 percent lower risk of diabetes was found for those whose intake was highest compared to those whose consumption of the mineral was lowest. Each 100 milligram per day increase in magnesium was associated with a 14 percent lower risk of developing the disease.

Further analysis revealed a more pronounced effect for the mineral among those whose body mass index was more than 25 kg/m2. "It is plausible that high magnesium intake may have greater effects on improving insulin sensitivity in overweight individuals who are prone to insulin resistance,"

http://goo.gl/rpytn

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094
78417 · September 11, 2011 at 8:23 PM

I am totally with you on that. NOTE: too much magnesium may lead to impaired bone metabolism.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094
78417 · September 11, 2011 at 8:19 PM

Totally with you on that. I take my from carbonated water.

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5
8879 · September 11, 2011 at 3:11 PM

One of free's studies above was in diabetes prone rats. Mg supplementation forestalled diabetes in all but one of the rats while controls all became diabetic. Yet Mg supplementation of already diabetic rats did not improve their situation. For me the lesson is supplement with Mg. I've yet to see where it can hurt, it's cheap so it's not going to break the bank, and it seems to do a world of good.

D5096ff5baffc0ba5d20b21346414a7a
2
1112 · August 22, 2011 at 2:10 PM

Dr. K's blogpost sent me to Carolyn Dean's book, The Miracle of Magnesium (2003). However, she is so full of conventional wisdom and so wrong, IMO, in key areas (no saturated fat, whole grains, etc.), that it makes it difficult for me to follow her advice on magnesium. She also says that magnesium needs to be taken on an empty stomach. I cannot find any other source that says this. What about the timing of taking magnesium supplement?

2b2c2e4aa87e9aa4c99cae48e980f70d
1059 · November 02, 2011 at 8:04 PM

Nancy, unless you also happen to be taking an early moring Vitamin D dose...

D5096ff5baffc0ba5d20b21346414a7a
1112 · August 22, 2011 at 11:23 PM

Thanks Dr. K. I have not found this anywhere else and I would say it is rather important to know this! So I suppose take first dose first thing in the morning before protein breakfast and last dose just before bed to assure absorption.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 9:31 PM

yes.....i have all my patients take Mg on empty stomach with water....you cant take it with Ca or with Vit D at all.

D5096ff5baffc0ba5d20b21346414a7a
1112 · August 22, 2011 at 3:18 PM

So is she correct about taking Mg on an empty stomach? It is the areas where I have no expertise that make it difficult for me to accept information that is 8 yrs. old from an authority when they are wrong about other areas. She may very well be a great resource on magnesium. I would like to see some corroboration from other experts. I will look into the studies suggested.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 2:52 PM

Don't throw the baby out with the bath water......the book is an awesome resource for magnesium not overall health care. Do you throw out the dictionary because then word ain't is in the now?

Medium avatar
1
19479 · August 22, 2011 at 1:31 PM

The Google scholar search revealed numerous articles supporting the role of adequate intracellular magnesium and functioning glucose metabolism/insulin sensitivity, however, I could not find any indication of the dose and type of magnesium used in the studies.

Does anybody have any resources pointing to these factors?

I'm currently supplementing my diet with 2 tsp of Natural Calm (350mg magnesium citrate) at night, and am wondering if this is sufficient.

1f8384be58052b6b96f476e475abdc74
2231 · August 22, 2011 at 4:15 PM

i take ZMA, i cant live without it

Cc7381bd787721575ea9198048132adb
5531 · August 22, 2011 at 3:51 PM

I also love Natural Calm but I know a lot of people that it doesn't agree with, I'd like to get some non-website info on NC. I thought Mg citrate was the most readily absorbed form but can't find literature on it.

Medium avatar
19479 · August 22, 2011 at 3:33 PM

@Quilt, what is it about natural calm that you don't like? I want to learn as much as I can about this subject and am just curious.

C3edabc6267abec9b5f8178e5d73552c
725 · August 22, 2011 at 3:30 PM

Chris Kresser recommends magensium glycinate or malate because they are better absorbed and have less side effects http://thehealthyskeptic.org/9-steps-to-perfect-health-4-supplement-wisely

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117
25467 · August 22, 2011 at 2:55 PM

Not a big fan of natural calm at all.

Medium avatar
0
39841 · August 22, 2011 at 11:46 PM

My vote would be for a magnesium and vitamin C deficiency potentiating the effects of a heavy fructose load.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094
78417 · September 11, 2011 at 9:55 PM

Enzyme downregulation and microbiota change. It will probably be fixed by gradually introducing carbs.

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5
8879 · August 23, 2011 at 1:06 PM

Travis, thanks for the reply. How to explain why so many long term low carbers seem to get more and more glucose intolerant with time? They certainly aren't consuming fructose!

Medium avatar
39841 · August 23, 2011 at 12:39 AM

I will say that my stance against fructose has softened a bit and that I doubt now very much that one could get IR from vitamin C-bearing fruits.

Medium avatar
39841 · August 23, 2011 at 12:36 AM

There must be exceptions, but my assumption is that the vast majority of it occurs as a result of hyperuricemia from heavy fructose intake coupled with ascorbate deficiency and a sedentary life (that doesn't restore muscle insulin sensitivity).

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5
8879 · August 23, 2011 at 12:12 AM

Travis -- Do you put IR solely at the feet of fructose?

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5
0
8879 · August 22, 2011 at 11:38 PM

Mg rocks! But did deficiency cause the condition or is it yet another symptom? Does IR cause obesity or the other way around? Any curious takers here?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094
78417 · September 11, 2011 at 9:52 PM

IR causes obesity, at least in subset of people. Check out for instance this paper: http://www.jci.org/articles/view/10842/version/1

8949bf87b0e0aefcad10f29975e4fa2b
8979 · August 23, 2011 at 4:45 PM

Ask this as a new question, and you will probably get more takers

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