Cramps: those awful moments when your muscles decide to tense painfully and maybe even spasm. The worst ones happen in the middle of the night, waking you up for no reason.

Weirdly, my mom used to tell me that my body was telling me to drink more milk for calcium, but it turns out that there are a few minerals that can determine if you are more susceptible to cramping or not. Some of the more important ones are calcium, magnesium, potassium, and sodium.

Other than the typical poor diet, dehydration, poor muscle condtion, and overexertion that you’d expect to contribute to cramps, some other factors include:

·         Tight muscles

·         Poor muscle tone

·         Exertion of cold muscles

·         Muscle injuries

·         Muscle fatigue

·         Excessive perspiration

·         Reduced blood supply

·         Wearing high heels for two long

If you do find yourself suffering from a cramp, the best treatment is to stretch out the muscle the best you can in a safe manner. While stretching, gently massage the muscle until the cramp subsides. An icepack may also help the muscles relax.

If you have problems with persistent cramping, you should see your doctor. They may be able to prescribe you a medication to help with the cramping or come up with other treatments.

Prevention includes the normal better diet and exercise—working towards a healthier lifestyle. Most importantly, make sure to do your stetching, warm ups, and cool downs properly before working out! I know everyone’s guilty of skipping those at least once or twice. Lots of water and proper footwear are also good. A tip a lot of people may enjoy: a regular massage can help reduce tension in the mucles.

So, lesson of the day: take care of yourself, drink lots of water, and do your workout right. 

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