Chromium, zinc and magnesium status in type 1 diabetes

Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2015 Nov;18(6):588-92. doi: 10.1097/MCO.0000000000000225.


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.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Blood Glucose / metabolism*
  • Chromium* / blood
  • Chromium* / deficiency
  • Diabetes Complications / blood
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / blood*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / complications
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Humans
  • Magnesium Deficiency / blood
  • Magnesium* / blood
  • Nutritional Status*
  • Oxidative Stress
  • Trace Elements* / blood
  • Trace Elements* / deficiency
  • Zinc* / blood
  • Zinc* / deficiency


  • Blood Glucose
  • Trace Elements
  • Chromium
  • Magnesium
  • Zinc