Freeman Cebu Sports

Calming muscle cramps

FEEL THE GAME - Bobby Motus - The Freeman

At some points in our earthly life, we experienced muscle cramps. They happen when our muscles get tensed and we can’t relax them. Dehydration, over exertion and in women’s cases, menstruation are the triggering factors. Usually, we can treat them by ourselves by stretching, massaging and eating foods high in magnesium, potassium, sodium and calcium.

In a medical review by Dr. Poonam Sachdev, a medical practitioner with extensive experience in publishing medical topics, she mentioned the following foods rich in these minerals, called electrolytes. Angela Nelson condensed this review in a WebMD article.

BANANAS – aside from potassium, it’s also high in calcium and magnesium. That’s 3 out of four nutrients needed to ease cramps.

SWEET POTATOES – like bananas, they also have the three nutrients but have three times more calcium than bananas.  Camote also has lots of water, so it keeps us hydrated. These camote riders on our roads probably have brain cramps. They need these minerals on their brains.

AVOCADO – it has 2 times the amount of potassium as a camote or a banana.  Potassium makes our muscles work easier and is beneficial to the heart.  It’s while reviewing this article that I discovered that avocado is a berry. Let’s just watch it as this green creamy berry is high in fat and cholesterol.

LEGUMES – beans and lentils are packed with magnesium and besides that, they’re rich in fibers. High fiber foods were shown to help control blood sugar, lower high cholesterol and ease menstrual cramps.

NUTS – like the above mentioned, they are a great source of calcium and magnesium. It has uric acid so over consumption could lead to arthritis and gout.

MELONS – cantaloupes and watermelons are packed with the three nutrients plus some sodium and lots of water, thus keeping us hydrated. These fruits are essential when we’re exercising as we lose sodium thru our sweat.

MILK – good for hydration, it has calcium, potassium and sodium. It also has protein that helps repair and restore muscle tissues.

DARK, LEAFY GREENS – rich in calcium and magnesium, studies have shown that foods high in these nutrients could help ease menstrual cramps. Broccoli, bokchoy, kale, spinach and tangkong are good sources. In the US, tangkong is banned because there were several cases of food poisoning. As we would like to say here, langkay ug balhibo ra ang dili ka-unon.

For maximum hydration, reach for water. Research shows that women need 11.5 cups a day, men 15.5 cups. The total amount also comes from the other fruits, vegetables and beverages we had for the day. Sports drinks are recommended only if we’re on a high intensity workout for more than an hour. For an electrolyte boost without the sugar, reach for coconut water.

I’m sharing this article as I have occasional bouts with thigh cramps related to my Type 2 diabetes. A hand-held massager had been helpful in relieving the nikaging muscles sa tiguwang.

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