Objective: Higher dietary intake of magnesium may protect against development of type 2 diabetes. The aim of this study was to examine the association between dietary magnesium intake and metabolic risk factors for diabetes.
Methods: We examined cross-sectional associations between magnesium intake and fasting glucose and insulin, 2-hour post-challenge plasma glucose and insulin, and insulin resistance assessed by the homeostasis model (HOMA-IR) in 1223 men and 1485 women without diabetes from the Framingham Offspring cohort. Magnesium intake was assessed by a food frequency questionnaire and magnesium intake was categorized into quintile categories. Geometric mean insulin, glucose, 2-hour post challenge plasma glucose and insulin concentrations and HOMA-IR were estimated across quintile categories of magnesium intake using Generalized Linear Models.
Results: After adjustment for potential confounding factors, magnesium intake was inversely associated with fasting insulin (mean: 29.9 vs 26.7 microU/mL in the lowest vs highest quintiles of magnesium intake; P trend <0.001), post-glucose challenge plasma insulin (86.4 vs 72 microU/mL; P trend <0.001), and HOMA-IR (7.0 vs 6.2; P trend <0.001). No significant association was found between magnesium intake and fasting glucose or 2-hour post challenge glucose.
Conclusions: Improved insulin sensitivity may be one mechanism by which higher dietary magnesium intake may reduce the risk of developing type 2 DM.