High blood pressure is the leading preventable cause of premature death in the world. It affects almost half of all adults in the U.S.
Recently, researchers have found that adding two essential minerals, calcium and magnesium, to drinking water may help lower blood pressure.
The finding may provide a simple method to help fight high blood pressure.
In the study, the team examined how drinking water sources influence the health of people in an area of coastal Bangladesh.
The people used pond water or groundwater in daily life. The team tested blood pressure in people who drank salinated water and people who drank freshwater.
They found that people who drank mildly salinated water had lower blood pressure.
These people had average systolic blood pressure levels 1.55 mmHg lower than those who drank freshwater. In addition, their average diastolic blood pressure levels were 1.26 mmHg lower.
The finding seems against the fact that sodium can increase blood pressure.
Further analyses of urine samples showed that these people had higher levels of calcium and magnesium in their body.
The team attributed this to drinking the salinated water and believed that the lower blood pressure levels were caused by the calcium and magnesium in water.
Previous research has shown that both calcium and magnesium are important for maintaining good blood pressure.
The current finding suggests that the two minerals are protective and may decrease blood pressure levels.
The team says that adding calcium and magnesium to drinking water could be an effective way to control blood pressure and help people at a high risk of the disease.
But future work is needed to find out how to add these minerals to water to benefit people.
The lead author of the study is Abu Mohammed Naser, a postdoctoral fellow at Emory University.
The study is published in the Journal of the American Heart Association.
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