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Can taking calcium supplements help lower high blood pressure?

Getting plenty of calcium in your diet can lower your blood pressure. The most effective diet for reducing high blood pressure, called Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH), includes plenty of low-fat and fat-free dairy foods (which provide calcium), lots of fruits and vegetables (which provide potassium, magnesium and fiber) and not much sodium.

It's not clear whether calcium supplements help reduce blood pressure. If there is a benefit, it seems to be small. (Supplements appear to be more effective in people whose blood pressure is sensitive to salt, especially if they don't get enough calcium in their diet.) However, calcium from all sources -- food, pills or a combination -- can help prevent high blood pressure.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.