Magnesium for Heart Health
Magnesium is a mainstay for many heart health and heart-cardiovascular related conditions including strokes, heart attacks, high blood pressure and cardiac arrest.
The European Food Safety Authority (EPSA)
Magnesium is important for neuro-transmission, bone maintenance, electrolyte balance, energy production, protein synthesis and much more.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Magnesium is a vital mineral and is critical to over 300 bio-chemical reactions that range from health of the bones, to support of the immune system, to healthy functioning of nerve and muscle.
There is much research that have been done that confirm the important role of magnesium in almost everything ranging from control of blood sugar to the prevention of cancer.
Additionally, magnesium is also very important for people subject to stress and anxiety. It is a natural muscle relaxer, which immensely helps with tension, anxiety and stress. These are states which impact upon the heart, predisposing it to atrial fibrillation and tachycardia, and more serious conditions including heart failure at a later stage.
Researchers made a detailed and specific study on the relationship between increased intake of magnesium and benefits to overall heart health.
The study involved 16 separate studies and over 313,000 participants. The results were encouraging: For every 0.2 mmol/L increase in circulating magnesium, the participating subjects enjoyed up to a 30% decreased risk of cardiovascular disease.
By increasing dietary magnesium, the results were even better: A 22% decrease in the risks of contracting ischemic heart disease, IHD.
IHD is a heart condition caused by a decrease in the flow of blood to the heart muscle. 22% is, indeed, a very big benefit ~ from a mineral, and not a drug.
The Stellar Advantage
Many people in the modern world today are not taking in their daily quota of magnesium. It’s high time that we recognize the importance of magnesium and start increasing our daily intake.
The best option is, of course, is to choose to eat foods that are right for you, to eat foods high in magnesium. A few of these include:
- Dark, leafy greens eg swiss chard, spinach and kale
- Fish: mackeral, turbot, tuna
- Beans & lentils
- Whole grains: brown rice, quinoa, millet, bulgar wheat, buckwheat
- Dried fruits: figs, apricots, prunes, dates
However, sometimes it may not always be possible to get the necessary amount required for maximum heart health due to depleted soils in which many of the foods are grown.
In any case, the best way is to start a habit of eating real nutrient-rich foods, and to prepare your own meals yourself. This will ensure that you control what ingredients go into your food that you feed your body!
The other solution is supplementation. The best to take is magnesium orotate or aspartate. Stay away from the citrate and oxide forms which are not very absorbable.
© Helen Chow, ND
Health Sifu: Make Smarter Choices
Source: Circulating and dietary magnesium and risk of cardiovascular disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis of prospective studies. Am J Clin Nutr. 2013 Jul;98(1):160-73.