Coach Alicia Fong

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Health tip for week June 7th

  • If you get muscle cramps, increase your magnesium intake.

Many people get muscle cramps especially at night.  Nocturnal leg cramps are sudden, involuntary contractions of the calf muscles that occur during the night or while at rest. The cramps can affect persons in any age-group, but they tend to occur in middle-aged and older populations. Sometimes muscles in the soles of the feet also cramp.

Some researchers believe nocturnal leg cramps is caused by a problem with the transition from wakefulness to sleep and is not a disorder within the brain.  Sometimes the cramps are caused by overexertion of the muscles, structural disorders (flat feet), standing on concrete, prolonged sitting, inappropriate leg positions while sedentary, or dehydration.

Low levels and deficiencies of certain minerals known as electrolytes—magnesium, potassium, calcium and sodium—have long been linked to leg cramps. (Marathon runners sweating out the miles are particularly prone to this variety.) Certain drugs, such as diuretics have also been cited as a cause of leg cramps. Dialysis patients often complain of leg cramps, and pregnancy is also a factor.

To prevent cramping consider the regular use of supplements of calcium, magnesium, potassium and sodium (only if your sodium intake is low or if you sweat a lot).

Magnesium is one of the most common mineral deficiencies in the US.  Magnesium in the body serves several important functions:

  • Contraction and relaxation of muscles
  • Function of certain enzymes in the body
  • Production and transport of energy
  • Production of protein

I will suggest supplementing your diet with magnesium glycinate on a daily basis.  In order to be effective, take high doses initially and back it off after a week or two.  Taking high doses of magnesium glycinate will not make you have the runs or diarrhea.  Regular magnesium does but not magnesium glycinate.  When you buy your supplements, read the ingredient and make sure it is the magnesium is in glycinate form.

This is the one supplement all of my clients who have muscle cramps or restless leg syndrome claim to be effective and it is noticeable within a week.

You can also ensure to eat good food sources that contain magnesium like vegetables such as dark green, leafy vegetables. Other good food sources are fruits (such as bananas, dried apricots, avocados), nuts (such as almonds and cashews), peas and beans.

AF Performance Center sells magnesium glycinate of top brands and doctor brands only.  If you mention this blog, a 20% discount will be given to you.

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June 7, 2010 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , , ,

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