Purpose of review: Chromium, zinc, and magnesium are involved in insulin signal transduction, glucose metabolism, and cellular antioxidative defense. This review details the statuses of chromium, zinc, and magnesium in type 1 diabetes patients.
Recent findings: Blood levels of trace elements (especially magnesium and zinc) were lower in type 1 diabetes patients than in controls and were even lower in type 1 diabetes patients with poor glycemic control. Studies with mouse models have shown that chromium and magnesium supplementation alleviated diabetes-induced complications and improved glycemic control.
Summary: Many studies indicated positive correlations between decreased levels of serum chromium, zinc, and magnesium and poor glycemic control. The supplementation of type 1 diabetes patients with zinc, magnesium, and chromium may help to control diabetes and prevent diabetes-related oxidative injuries, but require further study.