How to Relieve Muscle Cramps

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January 11, 2021

How to Relieve Muscle Cramps

How to Relieve Muscle Cramps

If a muscle cramp has ever stopped you in your tracks mid-workout, you know why people are willing to do just about anything to get the cramping to stop. This sometimes excruciating experience is caused when your muscles contract involuntarily and can’t relax. Also called a charley horse, muscle cramps often occur in the calves, thighs and arch of the foot.

Even the young and active can be prone to painful muscle contractions. While there are many causes, one of the main culprits is a combination of exercise and mineral deficiency. An imbalance of electrolytes, such as sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium, can also make you more prone to muscle cramps. Here are a few things you can do to keep those aching muscle cramps at bay.

Muscle Cramp Treatments

When you feel that painful sensation coming on, here are a few muscle cramp remedies that may help you find relief:

  • Stretch: Put some weight on your cramping muscle. For calf cramps, use a chair for support and pull your foot toward your buttocks.
  • Massage: Hold your cramping muscle in a stretch position and gently massage it.
  • Apply heat or cold: If the muscle is tight or tense, apply heat. If it’s sore or tender, apply cold.

Foods That Help With Muscle Cramps

When you work out, your muscles require adequate amounts of sodium, calcium, potassium and magnesium to function properly without cramping. These minerals are called electrolytes, and they can be found in a variety of foods and beverages.

Foods High in Sodium

Sodium helps balance your body’s fluids and maintain healthy blood pressure. The mineral can also work with other electrolytes to keep muscle contractions in check and regulate nervous system function. If you’re low on sodium, you’ll start craving salty foods. Some sodium-rich options that can help with cramping include:

  • Salted tortilla chips
  • Pickle juice
  • Milk
  • Salmon

Foods High in Calcium

Because of its impact on heart and blood vessel health, calcium plays a critical role in enabling muscular contractions. It can also help regulate nerve impulses. If you’re experiencing cramping, eat calcium-rich foods like:

  • Milk
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Bananas
  • Melons
  • Dark, leafy greens
  • Orange juice

Foods Rich in Potassium

Potassium is one of the most crucial minerals when it comes to proper nervous system function. If you’re experiencing muscle cramps, try these potassium-rich foods:

  • Bananas
  • Avocados
  • Tomatoes
  • Melons
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Milk
  • Orange juice
  • Salmon

Foods High in Magnesium

Adenosine triphosphate is the energy source that fuels muscular contraction, and it’s stabilized by magnesium consumption. If you’re feeling weak and your muscles are twitching or cramping, eat some magnesium-rich foods like:

  • Beans and lentils
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Dark, leafy greens
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Bananas
  • Melons
  • Orange juice

How to Stop Muscle Cramps With Fluids

Water is critical to keeping your body hydrated. In fact, most active individuals experience muscle cramps due to a lack of fluids. While drinking water during activity can help ease muscle cramping, a new study suggests that you shouldn’t down a bunch of water post-workout. Drinking water after exercise can make you more susceptible to electrical stimulation-induced muscle cramps because it dilutes the electrolytes you need. Instead, you need to provide your body with fluids rich in these electrolytes.

Book an IV Treatment With Arizona IV Medics

Instead of reaching for a sugary sports drink just because it’s rich in electrolytes, why not hydrate your body the healthy way with an IV treatment from Arizona IV Medics? If you are experiencing muscle cramps due to dehydration and mineral deficiencies, our IV treatments can replenish key nutrients, rehydrate your body and help alleviate painful cramping. We offer the smooth muscle relent Magnesium and Taurine, with have a soothing effect on muscle cramps. We can stop your cramps fast and safely.

You can book your IV therapy session online for convenience. You can also call or text us at 623-521-5034.

Last Reviewed by Matt Heistan on January 1, 2021.

Matt Heistan
Matt Heistan
Matt is the CEO of AZ IV Medics. Matt has over 15 years of experience in the emergency medicine field. Matt attended Westwood High School, Scottsdale Community College, and the University of Maryland where he received a BS in Psychology. Matt is a 10-year USAF veteran and has been an EMT since 1999. After separating from the USAF, Matt was hired by the Peoria AZ Fire Dept. where he has worked as a Firefighter Paramedic for the last 10 years. Matt is a life-long athlete, from college football to powerlifting, to Crossfit, to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

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