Magnesium levels don’t predict heart risk

(Reuters Health) — Taking blood-pressure pills at night, rather than in the morning, may better control hypertension and significantly reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke, new research suggests.

After analyzing data from more than 3,500 healthy people followed for as long as 20 years, a team of researchers concluded there is no association between blood magnesium levels and the probability of developing high blood pressure or heart disease in the future.

Researchers are always looking for good markers to identify people at risk of disease that might be forestalled with early intervention.

Magnesium is known to be important to the proper functioning of cells, and animal studies have found low blood levels of magnesium seem to raise blood pressure while higher magnesium intake wards off hardening of the arteries.

Because magnesium deficiency is common among women, the elderly and minorities and previous research in both animals and people has yielded mixed results, Dr. Thomas Wang at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, and colleagues looked for patterns in data gathered through the Framingham Heart Study.

In a population of 3,531 study participants who were healthy at the beginning of the study, 22 percent (551 cases) developed high blood pressure after 8 years, and 16 percent (554 cases) had a cardiovascular event such as heart attack or stroke within 20 years.


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