There is nothing that can wake you up with a jolt as strong as the one you get when you suffer muscles cramps. They come unannounced, and before you know it, you are screaming in pain. Alluded to low levels of calcium, potassium and sometimes because of dehydration, muscle cramps can strike you any time of the day or night.
Not just exercises but even poor nutrition can be a significant factor contributing towards muscle cramps. If one has been suffering from painful muscles every so often, changing one’s diet makes a huge difference. In case you are suffering from a muscle cramp, you could do light stretching exercises. If available, an ice pack applied to the cramping muscle helps. Here are some foods that fight muscle cramps.
The humble watermelon has more to offer than just its water content. Melons are rich in potassium, the mineral needed for the efficient working of muscles. Having even a couple of slices of watermelon has shown tremendous improvements in healing muscle cramps.
- Sweet Potatoes
Such is the abundance of potassium in sweet potatoes that having just one everyday caters to about 12 percent of the daily requirement. Roasted, boiled, baked or mashed- have them whichever way you love.
Not much of a food element, but water is essential for good muscle function. Staying hydrated is the key to avoiding muscle cramps. A minimum of eight glasses daily is a must. If plain water seems too much for you to handle, you could try infused water or have lemon juice mixed in it. Increasing your fluid intake by having tomato juice, sweet lime or orange juice also helps.
- Calcium-rich Foods
Another mineral that is needed for muscle health is calcium. Dairy products, fish, leafy greens, and nuts are all abundant in calcium and therefore work wonders when one is suffering from muscle cramps. Almonds, yogurt, and cheese have the highest concentration of calcium.
There is a reason why you see all the sportspeople chomping on bananas in between matches. Banana is rich in potassium and magnesium; both elements help with controlling muscular cramps. The effects can be felt almost immediately. Having a banana with your morning cereal is one of the healthiest breakfasts that cater to your daily intake of calcium, magnesium, and potassium.
- Salt And Sodium-Rich Foods
Sodium helps in regulating blood pressure and in maintaining fluid balance in the body. It works with other electrolytes like potassium for proper nerve and muscle function. To avoid the muscles cramping up, eat rock salt or sea salt and avoid processed foods that create an imbalance in electrolytes in the blood leading to fluid imbalance. Beetroots, carrots, celery, smoked fishes and meats, and olives are naturally high in sodium.
- Dark Chocolate
Here is one more reason to eat some dark chocolate. Rich in magnesium, dark chocolate helps in improving muscle function. Magnesium aids in contraction and relaxation of muscles and in maintaining electrolytic balance.