blood ﬂow problems, thyroid problems, kidney disease, and multiple sclerosis. Certain medicines can also cause cramping. An example of one is a diuretic medication such as Lasix. The diuretic may be pulling ﬂuid off the body and the person goes to the bathroom so much that their system becomes off balance. They might lose too much potassium, that is why most doctors require their patients to have a potassium supplement pill when on a diuretic medication. Remember, low potassium may be the culprit for muscle cramping.
I must add that you should be careful when buying a potassium supplement from the health food store. Even though it’s an over the counter supplement, it could still be dangerous when over used. Signs of potassium overdose can be confusion, a tingling sensation in the arms and legs, low blood pressure, weakness, an irregular heartbeat, and even coma.
Everyone wants to know how to prevent muscle cramps, especially those nasty night ones. First, let’s talk about what to do when you are actually in the middle of one and then we’ll talk about how to possibly avoid getting them. If you ﬁnd yourself in the middle
of a cramp, try to stretch and massage the muscle. You could try to take a warm shower or bath to relax the muscle. Some people get relief from a heating pad. You could also try using ice or a cold pack. And of course, over the counter medications could be used.
Now lets consider trying to prevent the cramps all together. Diet may be a good start. Try to eat foods that are high in calcium such as cheese, kale, almonds, yogurt, broccoli, and kelp. You may want to consider foods high in magnesium such as nuts, legumes, and green leafy vegetables. Foods that are high in potassium are bananas, avocados, nuts, strawberries, apples, carrots, ﬁsh, potatoes, meat, tomatoes, just to mention a few.
Always remember to drink plenty of water. Some electrolyte drinks can be used too. However be careful of the artiﬁcial colorings and the added sugar. It may be helpful to dilute the drink down to half water, half electrolyte drink.
The following is a list of supplements, minerals, and homeopathy which I learned about while in medical school. Please let me make it clear, if you are experiencing continual muscle cramping, please see your doctor. I am in no way trying to treat anyone by giving out this information.
Magnesium 250 mg twice a day is considered a muscle relaxer.
Calcium 500 mg twice a day. Calcium is required for muscle and nerve relaxation.
Potassium 300 mg a day may help but get advice from your doctor.
Homeopathic Magnesia Phosphorica is a remedy and can be found at the local health food store.
B vitamins may be helpful. The B vitamins can become depleted due to the stressful lives we live.
Protease enzymes may reduce muscle aching and inﬂammation.
A good massage not only feels great but it can be excellent to work the cramps out and
help improve circulation.
Stretching can be important.
Seeing your local chiropractor, osteopathic doctor, or a naturopathic doctor in order to check the spinal alignment may also help.
I hope some of these ideas can help you make a plan. Getting a better sleep is important. Sleep helps the immune system to function better and that is the start of keeping a healthy body.