Craving sugar can be an indication of a lack of magnesium and zinc in your diet. Here is why:
Despite being commonly marketed for use in muscle relaxation and cramp prevention, magnesium is involved in over 300 essential enzymatic reactions and is necessary for every major biological process! It plays a role in many processes that are of central importance in the biochemistry of each cell, particularly in energy metabolism. It is required for many important biological functions such as nerve conduction, regulation of vascular tone, muscle activity, amino acid and protein synthesis, DNA synthesis and degradation, and healthy immune function (Rasmassun et al. 1989).
However, is not so commonly known that magnesium is involved with the regulation of glucose, insulin and the neurotransmitter dopamine. Our bodies are commonly searching for that ‘happy level’ of all nutrients, hormones and all other factors that throw out homeostasis (stable and consistent internal physiological environment). If you don’t have enough magnesium in your diet, you may experience cravings for chocolate and sugar and some times find it hard to sleep or relax.
Zinc is an essential component in over 200 enzymes in the human body. It is important for healthy testosterone levels in men and plays an important role in the metabolism of proteins, carbohydrates, lipids and nucleic acids. It is a co factor in a range of biochemical processes, including the synthesis of DNA, RNA and protein (King & Keen 1998). But how does it link to sugar cravings?
In healthy people, zinc is also needed for proper glucose and insulin utilisation. A zinc deficiency can also throw out your bodies homeostasis and lead to those unwanted sugar cravings.
Where can I get good sources of Magnesium and Zinc?
If you have a well balanced diet taking in the following foods, you may not suffer as much from these sugar cravings: Soy beans, spinach, lima beans, almonds, hazelnuts, oat bran and brown rice ( for Magnesium), or beef, pork, oysters, lobster, yogurt, chickpeas, almonds and oatmeal (for Zinc).
If you aren’t taking in enough of the above foods, we recommend trying out our Advanced Diet & Blood Sugar Support product which has 500 mg of Magnesium Citrate and 16.1 mg of Zinc, both of which are therapeutic doses. We’ve also thrown in 200 mg of the ‘Red Wine Secret’ ingredient Resveratrol for good measure. For more information on Resveratrol see our other blogs or contact us.
THE TAKE HOME MESSAGE?
If you aren’t a sugar craver, you probably have enough zinc and magnesium in your diet. But if you love your sugar, especially late at night, you may be deficient in magnesium and zinc and should give our ‘Advanced Diet & Blood Sugar Control’ a try!
***Please always consult your doctor or specialist before trying any health supplements at therapeutic doses.
Rasmussen HS, Aurup P, Goldstein K, et al. Influence of magnesium substitution therapy on blood lipid composition in patients with ischaemic heart disease. A double-blind, placebo controlled study. Arch Intern Med 1989; 149149149149: 1050–1053.
King JC, Keen CL. Zinc. In: Shils ME, Olson JA, Shike M, Ross AC, eds. Modern Nutrition in Health and Disease, 9th edn. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 1998: 223–7 Zinc: Dietary Supplements 239