A pooled analysis based on 40 high-quality prospective cohort studies from 9 different countries totaling more than 1 million participants showed that higher dietary magnesium intake was associated with a reduced risk of stroke, heart failure, diabetes, and all-cause mortality.1
This comprehensive analysis was conducted by researchers from Zhejiang University and Zhengzhou University (China) who identified all available cohort studies published since 1999 with large sample sizes and long-term follow-up data. In these studies, dietary magnesium intake was assessed using a validated food frequency questionnaire or dietary recall, and disease cases were recorded during the long-term follow-ups (ranging from 4 to 30 years).
The researchers found a lower risk of multiple health conditions among those with higher magnesium intake. In a dose-response analysis, a 100 mg-per-day increase in the dietary magnesium intake was significantly associated with a 7%, 22%, 19%, and 10% reduction in the risk of stroke, heart failure, type 2 diabetes, and all-cause mortality, respectively. Dr. Fudi Wang, corresponding author from the School of Public Health of Zhejiang University, indicated that increasing the consumption of magnesium-rich foods may be beneficial to overall health.
The study results were published in the journal BMC Medicine (December 2016).
Why is this clinically important?
The finding of this study has important public health implications, as nearly 1 out of every 2 Americans 1 year and older had inadequate intakes of magnesium.2 The inadequacy was even greater for some groups:2
- 70% of female and 80% of male ≥ 71 years old did not consume magnesium above the Estimated Average Requirements (EAR).
- 69% of male and 89% of female age 14-18 did not consume magnesium above the EAR.
Magnesium supplementation may help Americans meet recommended dietary intakes for magnesium, according to national surveys and cohort studies.3-5
- Fang X, Wang K, Han D, et al. Dietary magnesium intake and the risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and all-cause mortality: a dose-response meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies. BMC Med 2016;14:210.
- Moshfegh A, Goldman J, Ahuja J, Rhodes D, LaComb R. What We Eat in America, NHANES 2005-2006: Usual nutrient intakes from food and water compared to 1997 Dietary Reference Intakes for vitamin D, calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium. In: U.S. Department of Agriculture ARS, ed.2009.
- Burnett-Hartman AN, Fitzpatrick AL, Gao K, Jackson SA, Schreiner PJ. Supplement use contributes to meeting recommended dietary intakes for calcium, magnesium, and vitamin C in four ethnicities of middle-aged and older Americans: the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis. J Am Diet Assoc 2009;109:422-9.
- Bailey RL, Fulgoni VL, 3rd, Keast DR, Dwyer JT. Dietary supplement use is associated with higher intakes of minerals from food sources. Am J Clin Nutr 2011;94:1376-81.
- Ford ES, Mokdad AH. Dietary magnesium intake in a national sample of US adults. J Nutr 2003;133:2879-82.