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|Scott Greenberg, NatureCity author & contributor|
A new study shows that supplements of magnesium may lower blood pressure for people suffering from hypertension. High blood pressure is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease.
The study was published in the April 2009 issue of Nutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Diseases.
Magnesium is the fourth most abundant mineral in our bodies and is essential for everything from maintaining normal muscle and nerve function to keeping our heart rhythm steady and supporting a healthy immune system.
Researchers from Pusan National University in Korea recruited 155 participants between the ages of 30-60 for this double-blinded, placebo-controlled, randomized trial.
The participants were randomly assigned to receive either a daily supplement of magnesium (300mg) or a placebo for 12 weeks.
At the end of the study, the researchers observed no differences in blood pressure between the magnesium or placebo groups.
However, when the researchers looked only at hypertensive participants, they observed decreases in both systolic blood pressure (17mmHg decrease) and diastolic blood pressure (3 mmHg decrease). The placebo group saw a much smaller decrease in systolic and diastolic blood pressure of 7mmHg and 0.8 mmHg, respectively.
Systolic blood pressure is represented by the top number in a blood pressure reading. Diastolic blood pressure is the bottom number.
This study supports the findings of another study published in the April 2009 issue of the American Journal of Epidemiology, which found that magnesium may cut the risk of stroke, hypertension, and type-2 diabetes.
Foods with the highest levels of magnesium include green leafy vegetables like spinach and lettuce, many nuts such as almonds and cashews, and soy beans and halibut. Or you can get your daily dose of magnesium via a high quality daily vitamin.
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