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Dieting Study: Calcium May Help You Live Longer by Lowering Blood Pressure, Cholesterol, or Blood Sugar Levels

Seniors and those who are middle-aged might want to pay attention to the results from a new study about calcium.

Researchers began a 10-year study with 23,000 Swedish men between the ages of 45 and 79. By the end of the study period, about 10 percent of the men – more than 2,300 – had passed away.

By studying the diets of the study participants, the researchers found that the men who consumed the most calcium in food were 25 percent less likely to die over the next decade than their peers who took in the least calcium from food. The upper range of calcium intake was about 2,000 milligrams a day, on average, compared to about 1,000 milligrams on the low end.

Calcium may reduce mortality risk by lowering blood pressure, cholesterol, or blood sugar levels. The main sources of calcium for the Swedish men were milk, milk products and cereal products. None of the men took calcium supplements.

Researchers for the study, which appeared in the American Journal of Epidemiology, said the positive effects they found for calcium intake are in line with previous research that links higher calcium intake with lower mortality in both men and women.

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