A whole food, nutrient dense diet is a must for Diabetics.
You need to ensure that you are eating plenty of essential vitamins, minerals and plant chemicals called phytochemicals.
Unfortunately, due to the nature of the disease, sometimes diet alone is not enough to meet these requirements.
Diabetics have a higher need for certain nutrients due to higher excretion rates seen due to polyuria (increased urination).
Polyuria is a characteristic feature in Diabetics, constantly using up all your important nutrients.
Below is a comprehensive list of the specific nutrients needed for people living with Diabetes.
Nutrients depleted in Diabetics
· Magnesium, B12, calcium, folate and chromium are depleted by metformin (a common Diabetic medicine)
· Magnesium, Zinc and Manganese due to increased urination
· B Group Vitamins due to polyuria and increased demand in energy metabolism
· Vitamins D & C due to increased usage and excretion
Nutrients needed in therapeutic doses for Diabetics
· Chromium essential for insulin signalling and glucose metabolism, this helps the glucose get into the cell where it is needed
· Zinc and Vitamin C are powerful antioxidants, (to keep your cells healthy), and for glucose uptake into cells
· Magnesium used in all energy transport systems, neuromuscular activity and electrolyte balance also helping to reduce microvascular complications such as poor circulation and eye problems down the track
· Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant, used to reduce damage to the cells and blood vessels that are under a lot of stress due to the increases in glucose in the blood stream, diabetes and cardiovascular disease are strongly linked
· B Vitamins especially B12, B6 and folate are needed in adequate numbers for normal homocysteine metabolism, high homocysteine levels leading to inflammation in the blood vessels a risk factor for cardiovascular disease.
· Omega 3 fish oils are crucial for the health of our cardiovascular system and help to reduce inflammation which is a key driver of many chronic health conditions.
Now you can see the important relationship between these nutrients and Diabetes.
Many of these nutrients which are so important in Diabetes care are being depleted, due to the disease.
In addition, depletion of many of these nutrients are implicated in the disease progression of other diseases that have been strongly linked to Diabetes, such as heart disease.
I would highly recommend that you speak to a registered health care practitioner before taking any of the above supplements to ensure they are the right fit for you.
In clinical practice, we only use supplements available to registered practitioners that have been designed to have a higher therapeutic effect.
Please contact us if you need further assistance with your diabetes care.
Yours in good health
Mark Kiss, nutritionist at Living Holistic Health