Like vitamin D deficit, magnesium deficit is considered to be a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Several steps in the vitamin D metabolism, such as vitamin D binding to its transport protein and the conversion of vitamin D into the hormonal form 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D by hepatic and renal hydroxylation, depend on magnesium as a co-factor.
A new analysis of two National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys data sets, published in BMC Medicine, investigated potential interactions between magnesium intake, circulating 25-hydroxyvitamin D, which is the generally accepted indicator of vitamin D status, and mortality. Data indicate a reduced risk of insufficient/deficient vitamin D status at high magnesium intake and an inverse association between circulating 25-hydroxyvitamin D and mortality, particularly cardiovascular mortality, among those with magnesium intake above the median. The study provides important findings concerning potential metabolic interactions between magnesium and vitamin D and its clinical relevance. However, results should be considered preliminary since biochemical data on individual magnesium status were lacking, confounding cannot be excluded and questions on the dose?response relationship still remain to be answered.