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Meta-analysis links increased magnesium intake with fasting glucose and insulin reductions

Meta-analysis links increased magnesium intake with fasting glucose and insulin reductions

Tuesday, January 29, 2013. The results of a meta-analysis published online on January 23, 2013 in the Journal of Nutrition reveal an association between diets that include higher amounts of magnesium and lower levels of fasting glucose and insulin.

American and European researchers sought to determine the influence of genetic variations associated with glycemic traits or magnesium metabolism on fasting glucose and insulin levels, which are elevated in metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. "Evidence from cross-sectional and longitudinal observational studies suggests that diets higher in magnesium are associated with reduced risk of insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes, whereas in intervention studies, supplemental magnesium improves measures of glucose and insulin metabolism in generally healthy adults, as well as in those with insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes," Adela Hruby and colleagues write. "However, little is known about potential interaction between magnesium intake and genetic variability on glycemic traits, in which genetic variants related to either magnesium transport and homeostasis or glucose and insulin metabolism may modify the pathways through which magnesium exerts its effects."

The researchers analyzed data from up to 52,684 nondiabetic men and women who participated in 15 studies included in the Cohorts for Heart and Aging Research in Genomic Epidemiology (CHARGE) Consortium. Dietary questionnaire or interview responses, or food diary entries were analyzed for magnesium content from food and beverages. Participants were genotyped for up to 25 single nucleotide polymorphisms related to fasting glucose, insulin or magnesium.

Average magnesium intake ranged from 224.7 milligrams to 479.7 milligrams per day. Reductions in both fasting glucose and fasting insulin were observed in association with increased magnesium. While a nominal association was found between one of the genetic variants examined in this study and fasting glucose and two variants showed nominal interactions with magnesium intake on fasting glucose and fasting insulin, no significant effects for the variations were observed.

"To our knowledge, this is one of the largest observational studies to investigate magnesium intake's associations with fasting glucose and fasting insulin, and it is the largest meta-analysis investigating interactions between magnesium intake and risk loci on fasting glucose and fasting insulin," the authors announce.

"Our results indicate that higher dietary magnesium intake is inversely associated with fasting glucose and fasting insulin in individuals free of diabetes, generally irrespective of genetic variation at glycemia- and magnesium-related loci investigated," they conclude.

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Diabetes lower in tea drinkers worldwide

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An article published online on November 7, 2012 in the journal BMJ Open reveals an association between black tea drinking and a lower incidence of diabetes around the world.

European researchers analyzed prevalence data from the World Health Organization for respiratory diseases, infectious diseases, cancer, cardiovascular diseases and diabetes, and independently collected sales data for black tea from 50 countries. Countries that sold the most black tea per person included Ireland, the United Kingdom, Turkey and Russia, and countries with the lowest concentration of black tea drinkers included South Korea, Brazil, China, Venezuela and Mexico.

The researchers observed an association between rising black tea consumption and a decline in diabetes. Black tea consumption was not correlated with the other four diseases. Further statistical analysis confirmed the association. While green tea contains catechins that have anti-inflammatory and other properties, the authors remark that the fermentation process that green tea undergoes to become black tea results in the formation of complex flavonoids known as theaflavins and thearubigins that provide additional health benefits.

"This innovative study establishes a linear statistical correlation between high black tea consumption and low diabetes prevalence in the world," Ariel Beresniak and colleagues write. "These results are consistent with biological and physiological studies conducted on the effect of black tea on diabetes and confirm the results of a previous ecological study in Europe."

Although an association does not establish causality, the results strongly suggest the need for further investigation to explore the possible protective effects of tea drinking against one of the most devastating diseases of our time.

February 2013 Life Extension Magazine® Now Available in Electronic Format

February 2013 Life Extension Magazine® Now Available in Electronic Format

This e-issue of Life Extension Magazine® is extraordinarily easy to use, easy to navigate … with the same flip-the-page feeling you get from your printed copy, plus a few extra advantages. You can choose to search out a topic or keyword. Skim quickly. Skip ahead. Even order products. Now all that convenience is right at your fingertips.

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