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In Mild Kidney Disease, Dietary Restriction May Be The Best Way To Reduce Phosphate's Negative Effects On The Heart

High phosphate levels in the blood carry increased heart-related risks, but taking a drug that targets phosphate does not improve cardiovascular measures in patients with mild kidney disease, according to a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN). The findings suggest that, at least for now, reducing dietary intake of phosphate may be the best way for these patients to reduce the mineral's effects on the heart.

Higher blood levels of phosphate, even in the normal range, are linked with an increased risk of dying from heart-related causes. This was first demonstrated in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) and subsequently in the general population. Researchers have suggested a number of possible explanations, including phosphate's ability to promote calcification and stiffening of blood vessels and its potential to cause structural changes in the heart, such as increased wall thickness.

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