Vitamins for diabetics

People who have diabetes have to watch their diet and lifestyle very closely or they will be at risk of having side effects of the disease. In addition to adhering to a diabetic diet, there are certain vitamins and minerals that diabetics need in increased amounts due to their disease. We will discuss the individual vitamins and minerals here below.

Vitamin C is a very important vitamin for those who are diabetic. Most if not all Type I diabetics have low vitamin C levels in their bloodstream. Vitamin C helps people to fight off infection and improve the immune system. Diabetics do not heal from wounds as quickly as other people. They are also prone to infections. Diabetics do not fight off infection as easily as other people do. This may be due to lower levels of vitamin C in their bloodstream. Research has also shown that vitamin C can help increase glucose tolerance in those who have Type II diabetes. Vitamin C has also been shown to lower the sorbitol levels in diabetics. Sorbitol is a type of sugar that is harmful to diabetics and can damage organs such as the eye, kidneys, and cause nerve damage. Recommended dosage of vitamin C for diabetics is between 1,000-3,000 mg per day.

Vitamin B6 is another vitamin that is very important for people who have diabetes. Research has shown that diabetics who have neuropathy have low levels of vitamin B6 in their blood. Peripheral neuropathy can be caused by a vitamin B6 deficiency. It is almost impossible to distinguish whether a person has diabetic neuropathy or peripheral neuropathy. Research has also shown that diabetics who have neuropathy respond well to supplements of vitamin B6 with their other medications. Women who have gestational diabetes during pregnancy have shown improvements in their glucose tolerance when supplemented with vitamin B6. The recommended dosage of vitamin B6 is 1,800 mg per day.

Vitamin B12 is another vitamin that has a role in diabetic neuropathy. The research has shown that neuropathy has responded well to supplementation of vitamin B12. Scientists are unsure if this is due to the fact that the diabetics were deficient in B12 prior to supplementation or if they were optimizing the metabolism of the vitamin. Vitamin B12 may be taken orally but intramuscular injections may be required. The recommended dosage is 1,500 mg per day divided into three doses.

Research has shown that people who have diabetes also have lower levels of vitamin E in their bloodstream. Further research has gone on to say that it is suggested that people who have low levels of vitamin E in their blood may well become Type II diabetics. Vitamin E helps regulate and improve the efficiency of insulin. It also works as a powerful antioxidant and helps the transportation of oxygen into the cells and the bloodstream. Low levels of vitamin E can lead to increased damage to the cells and tissues due to free radicals. This can cause damage to the vascular system and platelet aggregation or clumping can occur. This is the fore runner to the formation of blood clots in the circulatory system. The recommended dosage of vitamin E is 1,200 IU per day. It is recommended to take 400 IU for one week then increase to 800 IU per day for one week then 1,200 IU per day.

Biotin is another vitamin that most people hear little about. It works with the other vitamins and insulin to process the glucose in the body. This vitamin helps to facilitate the first step of glucose metabolism. It increases the work and activity of glucokinase. This substance is normally found in the liver. In diabetics, the levels are usually very low. Biotin helps increase the release and amount of glucokinase that is available. This can significantly increase the amount of glucose that is metabolized in the body. The recommended dosage of biotin is 16 mg per day.

Some trace minerals are essential for diabetics as well as the vitamins mentioned above. Chromium is essential to diabetics for the proper metabolism of glucose and for insulin efficiency. Niacin should be limited in the diabetic diet as in large quantities it can impair glucose tolerance. The recommended dosages are Chromium 200mg and Niacin 100mg per day.

They also recommend that diabetics get Magnesium 300-400 mg per day and CoQ10 120 mg per day. Potassium levels should be monitored to make sure there are adequate levels in the blood. If not then supplements should be utilized or foods added to the diet that are rich in potassium.

Prior to starting any vitamin, mineral, or nutritional supplement it is advised to consult with a medical professional to make certain it is safe for the individual in question. No two people are alike and individual dosages will need to be tailored to that person.

Last updated on Jul 12th, 2011 and filed under Vitamins and Minerals. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments are closed