Treat Your Heart Right with Magnesium Treat Your Heart Right with Magnesium
By Dr. Carolyn Dean, for Natural Vitality
Americans are prone to heart disease and heart attack because the present American diet is heavily biased toward processed flour, sugar, and unhealthy fats. Poor dietary choices lead to unhealthy eating and a deficiency in a critical mineral: magnesium. Between our mineral-depleted diet, the depletion of minerals from our soil, and the fact that most Americans do not get the RDA for magnesium, over 75% of Americans are magnesium-deficient!
Clinical studies have shown that chronic magnesium depletion has direct consequences for the heart, blood vessels, and many other important functions. Some of the consequences of magnesium deficiency include:
1. Heart Attack: The heart is a very large muscle. Calcium causes muscles to contract and magnesium causes them to relax. If the body is deficient in magnesium, the heart can go into spasm causing a fatal heart attack, beat erratically causing arrhythmia, beat too slowly (bradycardia), or too quickly (tachycardia).
2. Angina: Magnesium prevents blood-clot formation and muscle spasms of the heart blood vessels, which can lead to heart attack. One major cause of angina is spasming of the heart's coronary arteries that are lined with smooth muscles that react to a deficiency of magnesium.
3. High Blood Pressure: Magnesium prevents muscle spasms of the peripheral blood vessels, which can lead to high blood pressure, another risk factor of heart disease. High blood pressure can cause stroke and heart attack. Tension in the smooth muscle of blood vessels throughout the body due to magnesium deficiency is a major cause of high blood pressure.
4. Atherosclerosis: Magnesium prevents calcium buildup in cholesterol plaque in arteries, which leads to clogged arteries.
5. Heart Disease: Your body requires magnesium to maintain healthy elastin, which provides essential elasticity in your arteries. Loss of elasticity is a risk factor for heart disease. Loss of elasticity causes inflammation of heart blood vessels, which interferes with blood flow and leads to heart disease.
6. Cholesterol Balance: Magnesium is a natural statin (anticholesterol medication). It is necessary for the activity of an enzyme that lowers bad cholesterol (LDL) and triglycerides, and raises good cholesterol (HDL).
7. Other Symptoms: Magnesium deficiency symptoms include leg cramps, eye twitching, fatigue, constipation, insomnia, anxiety, racing heart, and chest pain. Adequate magnesium nutrition may lessen the need for heroic surgeries and may lessen the need for or even replace high-cost medications and their adverse side effects.