The Best Vitamins for Muscle Cramps and Spasms
Muscle cramps and spasms are highly debilitating and can be painful enough to stop you dead in your tracks. In most cases, muscle cramps and spasms can hit without warning, often when you’re in the middle of an exercise or workout. Muscle cramps and spasms are when one or more of your muscles suddenly tighten, restricting movement.
Although muscle cramps and spasms typically do not cause permanent harm, they are incredibly inconvenient. As such, taking the necessary measures to treat muscle cramps and spasms is critical as finding ways to prevent them from happening in the first place.
What are Muscle Cramps and Spasms?
A muscle cramp, spasm, or a Charlie horse is a sudden, unmistakable tightening or contracting of one of your muscles. Cramps and spasms are involuntary and are most common in the legs, specifically the calves, feet, hamstrings, thighs, and hips.
While muscle cramps and spasms can happen anytime, anywhere, they most commonly occur during exercise or physical activities where you’re using energy and putting stress on a specific group of muscles.
Symptoms of Muscle Cramps and Spasms
Muscle cramps and spasms are unmistakable, regardless of which muscle they affect.
Here are some of the symptoms you may experience during an attack:
- Sudden tightness
- Extreme contraction
- Feeling like someone punched or kneed you in the affected muscle
- Inability to move or stretch the muscle
- Twitching under your skin due to muscle contraction
- The muscle tissue is dense and hard
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Causes of Muscle Cramps and Spasms
Muscle cramps and spasms are usually a sign of overuse and happen during exercise.
However, many things can cause cramps and spasms, including the following.
- Inadequate blood flow to the affected area
- Dehydration due to not drinking enough fluids
- Having a mineral or vitamin deficiency
- Not properly stretching the muscles before exercising
- Excessive muscle stress or overuse, or exercising in extreme heat
Vitamins for Muscle Cramps and Spasms
One of the leading causes of muscle cramps and spasms is insufficient vitamins and minerals in our system. Here are some prime vitamins for treating and preventing muscle cramps and spasms.
Potassium is an ideal vitamin or mineral for preventing muscle cramps and spasms. You often see runners, athletes, and people working out eating bananas before, during, or after expending energy to help reduce the risks of painful cramps or spasms.
Vitamin B1 helps improve nerve signals and muscle functioning, which reduces the risk of leg cramps.
Vitamin B12 improves blood flow and increases red blood cell activity, reducing cramping risks.
Vitamin D helps the functionality of calcium, potassium, and other essential vitamins and minerals, helping reduce the risk of cramping.
Magnesium is similar to Vitamin B1 in that it helps improve nerve and muscle function, which may reduce the risk of cramping.
What Vitamins Help With Muscle Cramps and Spasms?
While several vitamins and minerals can help with muscle cramps and spasms, B vitamins, and potassium are some of the best.
How do Vitamins Help Alleviate Symptoms of Muscle Cramps and Spasms?
Vitamins and minerals improve your cellular function, blood flow, and nerve and muscle function. These mechanisms are fundamental in preventing and treating muscle cramps and spasms.
Recommended Doses of Vitamins for Muscle Cramps and Spasms
Consulting a doctor is imperative to determine your correct vitamin and mineral dosages. Dosages are different depending on your age, gender, and size, and the type of vitamins or minerals in question.
Preventing Muscle Cramps and Spasms
Taking caution to reduce your risks of muscle spasms or cramps is crucial due to the significant damage and stress they place on your body. Try the following preventive measures during your next workout.
- Stretch thoroughly before any exercise or strenuous activity.
- Drink plenty of fluids and electrolytes before, during, and after exercising.
- Find ways to minimize stressors in your life, as this will result in muscle tightness and a higher chance of cramping.
- Consider taking a supplement to increase your system’s critical vitamins and minerals. Oral supplements are a good option, but vitamin IV therapy is more effective.
As you can see, muscle cramps and spasms are painful and inconvenient, but they can be avoidable with critical knowledge and preparation. Taking the proper precautions and increasing your intake of beneficial vitamins and minerals via oral supplements, dietary changes, or IV therapy can help prevent muscle cramps and spasms. However, it’s important to consult a medical professional before increasing your vitamin or mineral uptake to ensure you take the right amount.
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