Two medical studies just released suggest that high calcium rates in men and women could be associated with increased rates of cardiovascular disease. Doctors have speculated that calcium supplements could contribute to calcium deposits into fatty plaques in your arteries creating atherosclerosis, which causes plaque buildup, hardened arteries and increases your risk of heart disease and stroke.
“Results from the British Journal of Medicine showed that during 19 years of follow-up, 11,944 women (17%) died: 3,862 of these (32%) died from cardiovascular disease, 1932 (16%) heart disease and 1100 (8%) from stroke. Highest rates of all-cause, cardiovascular and heart disease were observed among those with a dietary calcium intake higher than 1400mg/day.” Researchers also observed higher death rates among women with an intake below 600mg/day.
“Women with a higher dietary intake of calcium exceeding 1400mg/day and also using supplements had a higher death rate compared to those not taking supplements. Women with a high dietary calcium intake (>1400 mg/day) were more than twice as likely to die compared with women with a 600-999mg/day calcium intake.”
Researchers explained their findings by suggesting that diets very low or very high in calcium can override normal balance in the body causing changes in blood levels of calcium.
The conclusion that researchers wrote was that high calcium is associated with “higher all-cause and cardiovascular mortality rates.” To prevent fractures in the elderly emphasis should be placed on individuals with a low intake of calcium instead of increasing the intake of those already consuming satisfactory amounts.
The second study conducted by Qian Xiao, from the National Institutes of Health, and supports prior research from last year which indicated that calcium supplements are linked to a high risk of heart attack. The researchers based the study on 388,229 middle-aged adults between 50 and 71 years old living in the United States. The subjects for the study were questioned about their lifestyle, overall well-being, and diet, including supplement use, between 1995 and 1996. The study then proceeded to monitor the subjects in the group for 12 years. During the 12 year period the subjects were monitored 12,000 people (3%) died of heart disease. The researchers discovered that males who took at least 1,000 milligrams of calcium every day had a 20% higher chance of dying from heart-related causes compared to those did not take calcium supplements.
“Michael F. Roizen, MD, Chief Wellness Officer for Cleveland Clinic and New York Times best-selling author, said:
“It has been known for some time that heart attacks are less common in areas where the water supplies are rich in magnesium. Magnesium is also known to lower blood pressure, dilate the arteries, and, when given after a heart attack, restore normal heart rhythms. Magnesium is especially important in the regulation of calcium. Because we do know that taking calcium helps reduce Real Age (physiologic age), it is also vital to get enough magnesium to allow for the proper absorption of calcium.”
Doctors are stressing that patients must adjust their magnesium input to balance the calcium they are adding to their diet. Diets low in magnesium are more likely to lead to cardiovascular disease. If you take a calcium supplement then you must have a proper magnesium supplement for the body to properly function.
 Grogan, Martha MD. I’ve read that calcium supplements may increase the risk of heart disease. Mayo Clinic. http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/calcium-supplements/AN01928
 Karl Michaëlsson, professor and others, Long term calcium intake and rates of all cause and cardiovascular mortality: community based prospective longitudinal cohort study. BMJ 2013;346:f228
 Glynn, Sarah Calcium Supplements Lead to Heart Disease, Medical News Today Feb 22, 2013. http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/256791.php