Congestive heart failure occurs when heart function declines and fluid builds up in the lungs and other parts of the body. A study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association looked at the relationship between heart failure and magnesium intake in 97,725 postmenopausal women. Magnesium intake was measured by a food-frequency questionnaire and divided into quartiles from highest to lowest.
Hospitalized heart failure was monitored in the subjects. Compared to women with the highest magnesium intake, women in the lowest quartile had a 32 percent greater risk of being diagnosed with heart failure.
Furthermore, low magnesium intake was associated with an 81 percent higher risk of reduced ejection fraction (the ability of the heart to pump blood to the tissues) between the lowest and the highest magnesium intake groups.
The authors concluded, “Low magnesium intake in a . . . [group of post menopausal women] was associated with a higher risk of incident heart failure, especially heart failure with a reduced ejection fraction.”
During my medical training, heart failure was generally seen in older men who had suffered either a severe or multiple heart attacks. Thirty years later, things have changed. It is being diagnosed in younger and younger men and women. I now see patients in their early 50s with heart failure.
Why is heart failure so common? The number one reason, in my opinion, is the widespread use of statin drugs, which are known to deplete coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) — a substance necessary for muscle function. Along with the kidneys and lungs, the heart contains the highest amounts of CoQ10 in the human body.
Depletion of CoQ10 could be predicted to cause reduced function in those organs. That is exactly what happens with statin use. More information can be found in my book, The Statin Disaster.
Magnesium is concentrated and highly utilized in the muscles of the body. I have been checking red blood cell magnesium levels in patients for over two decades, and most were deficient. Symptoms of magnesium deficiency include aching, cramping muscles.
It is best to have yearly checks on your core mineral levels which should include magnesium. A holistic healthcare provider should be able to guide you with this.
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