Muscle Cramping in the hands and feet.


New member
I have been battling cancer on and off again for about 20 years and over that time have run into many instances where due to an imbalance in my minerals and electrolytes I sufferer from hand and leg cramping that keep me from using my hands at all. I thought I would share my experience and what I have done to make the cramping go agway.

Some Causes of cramping.
- Dehydration
- Malnutrition
- Use of certain medication (IV antibiotics)

Dehydration is the first and foremost the cause of cramping. During hot weather it is important to stay properly hydrated while working. On average, of the total 2.5 Letters of fluid we lose each day 28% of that is from lost from our skin and lungs alone(1). This is increased with heat and exertion. Even when it is not hot out my office runs a toasty 29[SUP]o[/SUP]C, so drinking a good electrolyte rich drink every hour is a must for me. I try and drink one letter of coconut water every day. Unlike sports drinks coconut water is not manufactured in a lab and I have a good soce of it at my local Costco. I understand that most might not like the taste of it so finding a drink that you like to drink that is full of electrolytes is very important to stopping cramps before they begin. Avoid dehydrating drinks that cause stress on the body. These include anything with caffeine in it, coffee, coke, pepsi, mountain dew, and black tea. Alcohol of any kind is massively dehydrating and can cause a lot of other issues but can be the trigger to camping muscles.

Malnutrition like dehydration can over the long term leave you depleted of potassium, calcium and magnesium the big three minerals that play the biggest part when it come to camping, A diet void of fresh foods will leave you void of the minerals your muscles need to function properly. A poor diet is a constant stressor to the body and over time this stress and lack of good minerals can lead to poorer and poorer muscle function, then if there is a hot day where the temperature and humidity spikes your body will not be able to cope and muscle cramping can set in without warning. Eating fresh fruits and vegetables can help stave off any long term depletion of your bodies basic mineral content. If your are not into eating fruit or it is hard to come by on a daily basis, fruit juice.

Many medications can cause cramping, so talk to your doctor if you start a new medication and you begin experiencing cramping, or any other symptoms for that matter. Often getting certain intravenous drugs can case a drop in the minimal content of your blood. Your body then pulls minerals from anywhere it can get them the first place being your muscles. This can in turn lead to cramping and other muscle issues like atrophy. Wile on these medications it may be necessary to take potassium, calcium and magnesium supplements to keep your muscles from locking up.

My Home Remedies.

Like I said earlier staying properly hydrated is key, but sometimes that just is not enough.

Supplements are a great thing to keep around for the times when you need them.

Calcium - Everyone should be taking some form of calcium supplement if you are not eating a diet rich in natural calcium, that would be one with lots of dairy, organ meats, meat and bone broths, and mineral rich vegetables like kale, chard, and beet greens. Calcium citrate is preferred over calcium carbonate which is found in most supplements so read the labels before you bye. Calcium citrate is absorbed by the body better than calcium carbonate.

Potassium - Bananas are good but sweet potatoes are better when it comes to a natural source of potassium, but a large glass of orange juice is loaded with potassium. However when your body is cramping you need a bigger dose of potassium that you can get just from your foods. I have had chronically low potassium and so I keep it on had for when I have a cramping episode and take 10 - 20 MEQ extra, this with a large glass of water or coconut water during a cramping episode helps to ease symptoms.

Magnesium- Taking 400 - 800 mg of magnesium in the evening can help relax your muscles and keep your body cramp free and healthy. Consult your doctor before trying this though to make sure you are not at risk from regular use of Magnesium supplementation. During a crampin episode I will take at least 400mg along with a large glass of water to help the cramping subside.

Tonic Water - The quinine in tonic water is know to help relieve and prevent chronic cramping. When my cramping is bad I try and drink at least 20 oz of tonic water a day. Over ice with a squeeze of lime juice it is a refreshing drink any time of day

I hope this a informative and that it helps if you ever have a bought of cramping muscles that slow you down. Feel free to add any other advice or thoughts about cramping and the use supplements to relieve it.