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Leg Cramps in the Night. (You'll never guess what helped!!!)

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posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 02:27 AM
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I don't always double post But when I do it's in CAPS
edit on 12/5/2012 by staple because: (no reason given)




posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 02:30 AM
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reply to post by new_here
 


The old advice about eating a banana to stave off cramp is exactly the same as drinking some salt water. Muscle and nerve cells in the body work through small and frequent impulses (electrical charge movement) which causes a cell to do whatever it's supposed to do, in the case of muscle cells, this function is contraction.

Each individual impulse passing a cell is called an action potential. An action potential works like this:
- Cell is happily sitting with -60mV potential
- Sodium ions (salt - Na+) start to pass in to the cell through Na+ channels while potassium ions (banana - K+) stop moving out of the cell. This increases the potential of the cell.
- At -40mV, calcium ions (Ca2+) start to move in to the cell through the calcium channels in the cell membrane.
- At +10mV the cell has reached its peak potential and begins to repolarise. Basically the opposite happens, K+ leaves the cell, Ca2+ ions are actively transported out of the cell. The potential begins to decrease again.
- At around -30mV the Na+ and K+ pumps swap their activity levels, this means that K+ begins to re-enter the cell while Na+ leaves to restore the original balance of ions either side of the membrane and leave the cell at -60mV.

That's a whole cycle, and it can cause cramp when it happens in people with nutrient deficiencies of potassium, sodium or calcium because it's hard to make the cell revert to -60mV without enough ions. It can also cause twitches in people with excess nutrients for similar reasons.

Most people tend to be low in potassium when they experience cramp considering the excess salt in everything these days, you must have a pretty good diet to be low on sodium. I'd advise keeping a food diary for a week or two for salt intake and comparing it to your recommended daily dose.

As for why you instinctively knew to go for the salt, well we wouldn't last very long as a species if we didn't have cravings for things our body needed!



posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 02:51 AM
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reply to post by NarcolepticBuddha
 


interesting factiod (cant find the link where i read it) when a patient experiences a reaction to a placebo they have proven that the patients body has actualy manifested the chemical/nutrient neccessary for the effect they experienced,

so it was not only their belief that it would work that made it work, it is in fact their belief that they had this chemical in them that caused their body to physicaly create that chemical so they would feel it in them,


ive been trying to get my friends to give me (placebo) super enlightenment pills but for some reason having told them to do it gives me the knowledge its only a sugar pill and ruins the whole thing :/



posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 08:45 AM
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Originally posted by Dispo
reply to post by new_here
 


The old advice about eating a banana to stave off cramp is exactly the same as drinking some salt water. Muscle and nerve cells in the body work through small and frequent impulses (electrical charge movement) which causes a cell to do whatever it's supposed to do, in the case of muscle cells, this function is contraction.

Each individual impulse passing a cell is called an action potential. An action potential works like this:
- Cell is happily sitting with -60mV potential
- Sodium ions (salt - Na+) start to pass in to the cell through Na+ channels while potassium ions (banana - K+) stop moving out of the cell. This increases the potential of the cell.
- At -40mV, calcium ions (Ca2+) start to move in to the cell through the calcium channels in the cell membrane.
- At +10mV the cell has reached its peak potential and begins to repolarise. Basically the opposite happens, K+ leaves the cell, Ca2+ ions are actively transported out of the cell. The potential begins to decrease again.
- At around -30mV the Na+ and K+ pumps swap their activity levels, this means that K+ begins to re-enter the cell while Na+ leaves to restore the original balance of ions either side of the membrane and leave the cell at -60mV.


Well that is the Chemistry of it then.

Going back to the fact that I added a banana to my diet two days in a row (potassium) which was out of the routine, would you say I upset the 'balance' then?



posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 08:46 AM
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Originally posted by pryingopen3rdeye
reply to post by NarcolepticBuddha
 


interesting factiod (cant find the link where i read it) when a patient experiences a reaction to a placebo they have proven that the patients body has actualy manifested the chemical/nutrient neccessary for the effect they experienced,

Now that just adds a whole new spin on the concept that we 'create our own reality' !!!



posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 09:03 AM
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reply to post by new_here
 


Possibly, the body is very adaptable in the long term, but major changes in biochemistry have a harsh toll in the immediate time just after the change. I'd hypothesise that your cells were used to generating an ap with minimal ion concentrations, so when you increased the levels of K+ you managed to prevent proper repolarisation, probably causing the final exflux of K+ from the cell to be too small (since your body is used to transporting small amounts of K+ at this stage) to fully restore the charge balance on either side of the membrane, leaving the cell somewhere around -20mV. The Na+ intake increased the charge on the outside of the cell which decreased the potential to its proper level.

I suppose it doesn't really matter how much you take in as long as you aren't flooding your body with one or the other, but if eating a banana upsets your dietary mineral balance that much I'd suggest increasing your uptake of Na+, K+ and Ca2+ a little bit to prevent unforeseeable complications in future.

Na+ and K+ are used in the formation of ATP (energy) from glucose (sugar) too, so if your mineral levels are the limiting factor in energy production, you'll feel a lot better every day and find yourself becoming more active if you take in more of them. Also magnesium is important.



posted on Dec, 26 2012 @ 02:24 AM
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reply to post by new_here
 


After three months of solid leg cramping - I have to warn all people who suffer from leg cramps. leg cramps and pain are NOT a normal process of aging. Get yourself to a doctor and get checked out for blood clots. My leg cramp (after I ignored it for awhile, thought it was a torn muscle from hiking too much) - turned out to be CHRONIC CLOTTING from a rare blood disorder that came from my parents - an inherited gene mutation called Factor V Leiden.

So...if you suffer from really bad leg pain, consider blood clots. Other symptoms include red, hot tender skin, bumps, dizzy, fatigue - these are all things I am experiencing - and bruising easily as well.



posted on Sep, 19 2013 @ 10:57 PM
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reply to post by new_here
 


Let;s not get RLS mixed up with leg cramps. Restless Leg Syndrome is a disease and they are still researching on the real cause. Nearly my entire family suffers from RLS.
If you never had it, it is a crawling very dull pain mainly in the calf muscles and usually starts after you have gone to bed! It makes you want to jump out of bed and run for miles! Stretching doesn't help me. My doctor said for years a lot of docs thought it was 'in the persons head' and it wasn't real, now they know it to be real and have been coming out with meds to help it.
They put me on Hydrocodone and while this helped I felt awful in the morning plus it is tooooo addicting. Just by chance a doctor gave me a sample of Tramadol (it is synthetic and triggers natural receptors in your brain to reduce pain from the neck down) it doesn't seem to do anything for headaches.
I have been on those for awhile now and wake up refreshed.
Any drug can be addicting so use them only as needed usually before bed.
If you really have RLS and not cramps, talk to your doctor about prescribing them.
I told one doctor how well it worked and he told me "Good, my mom has RLS so I am going to try this as nothing else seems to work!" later he told ne it worked great! (not often you can GIVE a doctor advice and have them take it!!) LOL.



posted on Sep, 20 2013 @ 01:16 AM
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reply to post by NarcolepticBuddha
 


Quinine has been prescribed to a family member for the same reasons. And it did the deed, as prescribed.
So I'm backing you up on this one for sure.
I also have an unrelated story on Pickle Juice that I might share sometime. Has nothing to do with cramps, but Y2K.




posted on Sep, 20 2013 @ 01:54 AM
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spacedoubt
I also have an unrelated story on Pickle Juice that I might share sometime. Has nothing to do with cramps, but Y2K.


I look forward to it! Pickle juice is supposed to be good for electrolytes...did I read that in this thread? I don't remember, it's been a while



posted on Sep, 22 2013 @ 12:00 AM
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new_here
Ok, OUCH. Waking up at 3:30 AM with the muscles on the top of my foot and front of my calf seizing up is new to me! The uncontrollable contraction of the muscles did not respond to my rolling around in the bed moaning, massaging the muscles or forcibly bending my foot against the painful muscle contractions. I HAD to get up, and when I stood on it, it eased somewhat.

Walking, however, was a double-edged sword. Each time I took my weight off of the offending foot, the pain was excruciating. (I'd have thought the opposite would be true. Shows you how much I know about leg cramps in the night.)

Oh, and the look of it!!! I could actually see the seized up muscle in action... by the weird indention at the point of contention.

NOW DON'T YOU TELL ME to eat a banana because I'm low on Potassium, my friend. Fact is, I just recently bought bananas for the first time in ages, and have eaten one the last few evenings. (Otherwise, I'd had thought the same as you!) I actually, considering the circumstances, wondered if the influx of Potassium contributed to the leg cramps in some mysterious way-- maybe due to the absence of some other mineral.

Honestly, I wasn't thinking much except *OUCH* as I stood at the kitchen sink filling up a glass of water while bouncing on one foot in a desperate, sleepy stupor. I did feel thirsty. And that's when it came to me. I can't explain how I knew. Spirit told me? Collective Consciousness? Take your pick, it's all the same to me-- but the point is, I spied the Sea Salt in the salt grinder, and I knew it would help.

I put a few of the unground chunks in my mouth and drank some more water, still justa bouncing in klutzy sleepy stupor. Within 10 seconds of ingesting the rock salt (one piece dissolved in my mouth, the other two went down with the water) the leg cramps just instantly 'Turned Off' --as if someone had flipped a switch.

Coincidence or not? You be the judge. I did, however, find a wealth of info with a simple google search...
Leg Cramps & Sea Salt

While I'm at it, I seem to remember reading it is more dangerous to have too little salt than too much...
Too Little Salt in your Diet?

And while I'm at it, an interesting factoid about your first home-- Amniotic Fluid has the salt content of seawater...
Amniotic Fluid like Seawater

I'm throwing all of this out there for your information, and input, ATS! What experience do you have, if any, regarding Leg Cramps and Sea Salt? What are your thoughts on my experience vs. what you thought to be true?

(There was a recent thread about Cholesterol being 'wrongly accused' in heart disease. Is Sea Salt suffering the same accusation?) Just askin' !



Actually, I also have the same experience. I suspected my previous leg injury that causing my leg cramps. It was really annoying and I felt that my leg was getting paralyzed. BTW, I tried that salt remedy after finishing a 10K marathon and unfortunately, I was hospitalized due to severe allergies. I believe it was the salt remedy that triggered my allergy.



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 11:13 AM
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reply to post by new_here
 


Very good thread. I thought you were going to say mustard at first but seasalt sounds good too. S&F

I have been studying low blood volume lately. Salt is a big part of blood. Also it is comprised of a compound that is like the disodium acetate in dill chips. A combination of acetic acid and bicarbonate.

When you have low blood volume and eat something rich in niacin or any nitrogen compound it can lead to a light headedness or spinning feeling. The nitrous oxide formed causes the blood vessels to expand and this causes less bloodflow to the head when there is low volume. Many things have nitrogen, especially plants. Now, restoring volume is the right cure, you can't do that by drinking water. The problem with hypovolemia is that you always seem to have high bloodpressure to be healthy. I have only read a hundred articles on the enzyme processes involved that should be considered to bring this volume up correctly. It seems like very few of these scientific articles actually address correcting the problem. The cholesterol in the blood would be higher with less volume also, less blood but still a need for all the cholesterol to repair tissues would mean it is in higher concentrations in my mind. Now to coax the blood vessels to relax more means less calcium and more potassium and magnesium in my thoughts. Along with this you need the fluid and extra blood cells forming properly. I make blood cells at half the rate but I do make them. Now the volume will drop if eating the foods I shouldn't be for my condition, but I have to treat my TLE so I have to eat more sulfurs. Also the sulfur foods along with the molybdenum supplement make it easier to breath. Bringing up efficiency of the blood still causes low blood volume just without the breathing symptoms. It is not a cure. I want to cure the problem. I've had this problem all my life, with a heart rate normally at 110 to 120 just sitting around.



posted on Mar, 20 2014 @ 06:38 PM
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reply to post by new_here
 


When I was younger and even stupider all I drank was Pepsi and Dr. Pepper, and milk (idiot). I'd have leg cramps several times a week, get out of bed in great pain, trying to stand up. My dad told me to grab the skin just under my nose and squeeze, and that usually stopped them, but I had them. I must have thought it was a normal part of life. And for me extra salt wasn't the answer, I foolishly ate so much salt that I could have probably walked on water from the salt alone.

Then on January 28, 1988 I stopped the soda and just drank water (and juices). Hydrated myself with water even more as I learned more about it, and have kept myself hydrated since. The last time I had a leg cramp? 1987.





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