Have you ever been woken from a deep sleep with your muscle twisting itself into a painful, tight knot? Yup, I've definitely been there. And sometimes those cramps can be so bad, they'll leave your leg sore for days!
Thankfully, there are some simple things you can do during the day to avoid this painful experience at night and stop it from happening in the future.
Usually, the first thing I will ask someone when they tell me they're experiencing leg cramps is "are you drinking enough water?" Dehydration can affect your body in so many different ways, and leg cramps at night is only one of them.
You want to be sure you're drinking a minimum of half your bodyweight in ounces of water each day. For example, if you currently weigh 200 pounds, your goal should be to drink a minimum of 100 ounces of water each day. It's also best to drink the majority of that water during the earlier hours of the day – otherwise you might get rid of the leg cramps only to be woken up by late-night trips to the bathroom.
The second thing to look at is your potassium and magnesium intake throughout the day. It's hard to know exactly what these levels are in your body without a specific test, but you can easily increase your intake of each, in a healthy way, without causing any other issues in your body.
There are so many wonderful foods rich in potassium that are already included in your New Life Promise meal plans – delicious foods like spinach, broccoli, cucumbers, leafy greens, sweet potatoes, and zucchini, just to name a few. For those experiencing leg cramps who may need a bit more each day, you can also add 4-8 ounces of a pure natural coconut water to get a large dose of potassium quickly. Just be sure to read the label and ensure it is pure coconut water without anything else added.
Magnesium can also be easily increased, but it may take a bit more to get the right amount. Many studies have shown that over 50% of Americans are deficient in magnesium, which can contribute to leg cramps, constipation, low energy, joint and muscle pain, and poor sleep.
Your meal plans are loaded with magnesium-rich foods such as almonds, spinach, cashews, avocados, potatoes, yogurt, oatmeal, salmon, chicken, ground beef, and broccoli. Pumpkin seeds are also chock full of magnesium, delivering almost 50% of your needed amount of magnesium in just 1 ounce.
You can also supplement with magnesium, but I would encourage you to discuss any added supplements with your healthcare provider before adding them in. Although magnesium supplements are incredibly beneficial and very well-tolerated by most people, you want to be sure you do not have any contraindications and are not taking any medications that would interact poorly with a magnesium supplement.
Magnesium also comes in spray form because it has the ability to absorb through your largest organ – your skin. Many people who suffer from painful conditions like back pain, hip pain, knee pain, and shoulder pain, will use spray magnesium because they can target the exact area of their body where they are experiencing pain (as compared to a supplement which doesn't allow you to pinpoint a specific spot). In the case of leg cramps, you can spray your calves and legs right before bed, preventing any nighttime cramping.
One of the best magnesium sprays available is myKore Essentials Magnesium Oil. It also has the added benefit of containing THC-free CBD oil, which has now been touted as one of the best ways to control pain in the body. So, if you are not just suffering from cramps but also some joint pain, this would be a great option for you.
I like to keep this magnesium oil handy for any time I may overwork or over use my muscles and joints. The last time my family and I went hiking, I woke up the next day with the worst shin splints. That day and evening, I sprayed the myKore Essentials spray on my shins, and the next day the shin splits were completely gone!
You don't have to suffer from leg cramps another night. Be sure to get in your water each day, ensure you're eating your potassium- and magnesium-rich foods, and add in a small coconut water and some magnesium spray to ensure you are adequately hydrated and replenishing your mineral levels well. With these simple tweaks, you should feel relief quickly and permanently.