I have severe cramps in my legs. Do i have too much potassium or not enough?
Bryna Carracino (Los Angeles, CA) on Mar 27, 2012
Probably not enough. Are you dehydrated?
Franklin Antoian (Delray Beach, FL) on Mar 27, 2012
Lack of potassium is sometimes related to leg cramps. Dehydration can also cause leg cramps. It's best to see a doctor regarding these issues.
Shantih Coro (Hallandale Beach, FL) on Mar 27, 2012
Cramps are not only a sign of low/high potassium but also can be a lack of calcium and or magnesium.,80% of americans lack in magnesium. Magnesium is necessary for muscle relaxation, muscle contraction and de-contraction. I suggest you to consult with an experienced nutritionist trained in functional medicine. You can also call our office and we will be glad to help you, educate you and guide you. Regards, Shantih Coro
Ashlie Sykora (Bellevue, NE) on Mar 27, 2012
This is something that you want to discuss with your physician if it persists. That being said, make sure you are not dehydrated.
Chris Jones (Washington, DC) on Mar 27, 2012
Low sodium may be the culprit. Make sure you have the right amount based on your age and body weight. You can also try drinking more water and adding in an electrolyte drink as well. Observe your urination. The clearer, the better!
Bill Ross (Littleton, CO) on Mar 27, 2012
You are having an extreme build up of lactic acid in your muscles. That is why the baking soda is working. Yes, you need more potassium, as well as more water and stretching.
Spencer Hughes (New York, NY) on Mar 27, 2012
Cramping is usually caused by an over-activation of the muscle - it flexes too hard or for too long and shortens. Adequate stretching and warming up should help. If you're looking for a nutritional solution, take in more potassium. Muscle contraction is affected largely by sodium (which is why endurance runners and performance athletes often have a higher sodium requirement than normal people), and balancing that electrolyte with a little extra potassium should help you avoid cramping in the future. Take time to warm up at the beginning of every workout, and stretch at the end.
James Weaver (Milford, CT) on Mar 27, 2012
There can be many possible reasons for your muscle cramps, including poor blood circulation in your legs, overexertion of the calf muscle, inadequate stretching, extreme heat, muscle fatigue, dehydration, drug side effects, insufficient magnesium, calcium or potassium, or a pinched nerve in your back or neck. Treat muscle cramps by massaging, stretching, and icing the muscle. You can also warm the muscle or take a bath in Epsom salt. To avoid cramps in the future, try to eat more foods that are high in vitamins and calcium. Make sure you stay well hydrated and stretch properly before you work out.
Charles Bell (Knoxville, TN) on Mar 27, 2012
Cramps can be caused by a number of factors. They can be caused by dehydration. Try and increase your water intake, which for men is ideally 3 liters a day and 2.2 liters a day for women. Decrease soda intake. Sodas can actually speed up dehydration in the body, leading to more cramping.