Nutrients protect against heart and circulatory diseases

201607 TIP HEART Magnesium and artery calcification

Calcium can build up on artery walls, raising chances for heart disease, high blood pressure, and type 2 diabetes. Earlier studies found a link between low levels of magnesium and calcium buildup in coronary arteries in those with chronic kidney disease, but doctors wanted to know more about magnesium and calcium buildup in healthy people.

In this study, doctors measured magnesium  levels in 1,276 men and women who were free from symptoms of cardiovascular disease. Compared to those with the lowest levels, those with the highest circulating  levels of magnesium were 48 percent less likely to have high blood pressure, 69 percent less likely to have type 2 diabetes, and 42 percent less likely to have calcium buildup in coronary arteries.

Vitamin B12, omega-3, and inflammation

Chronic inflammation  is a factor in heart and circulatory diseases. In this study, 30 healthy men and women, aged 23 to 25, took 1,000 mg of vitamin B12 alone, 490 mg of DHA plus 98 mg of EPA alone, or the vitamin B12 and omega-3s together.

After eight weeks, all three groups saw a decrease in two important inflammatory factors—homocysteine and C-reactive protein—with those taking the combination of vitamin B12 and omega-3s seeing the most benefit.

Doctors said these two inflammatory factors are important; homocysteine because high levels can be an early signal of heart and circulatory disease, and C-reactive protein because elevated levels are a sign of systemic inflammation. Doctors concluded that vitamin B12 and omega-3s reduce inflammation in healthy young people.



Reference: Nutrition Journal; 2016, Vol. 15, No. 22, Published Online

Natural Insights for WellBeing July 2016

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