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cramps in legs still!

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  • cramps in legs still!

    so, i have been having cramps in my calves at night. charley horses. horrbile.

    I eat bananas, lot sof spinach and chard, my potassium levels on fit day are good as well as my magnesium levels.

    My question is - WHY didnt this happen BEFORE i went primal? I wasnt eating any more ( and probably less for that matter) potassium or magnesium. What is the deal?

    I have tried mag supplements and it is a diahrea hell. Most say potassium supplements are useless and not close to enough.

    I cannot seem to find coconut water here in italy, if I buy a cocnut and crack it will that be the same?


  • #2
    What kind of exercise do you do and how much liquid do you get per day?
    Calm the f**k down.


    • #3
      I walk. I drink at leat 1.5 litres of water per day.


      • #4 much salt do you get in a day? Only things I can figure are:
        *too vigorous exercise(nope)
        *not enough magnesium or potassium(nope)

        Only other options are not enough salt, low blood calcium, and some pretty unlikely diseases. : /
        Calm the f**k down.


        • #5
          Magnesium ...

          I can't take it by mouth either, even the supposedly gut-friendly glycinate gave me the runs.

          You can try what I did: "magnesium oil" (it's really a brine.) You rub it into your skin. Some people find it itchy -- I don't -- if so, dilute it and try again, gradually working up to full strength. Leave it on for about a half hour or more -- it feels kind of sticky, not all that pleasant -- and then you can rinse it off. By then most of the magnesium will have gotten through your skin. The greater the area you spread it on, the more you get inside you, of course.

          You can Google "magnesium oil" to find sources. The Ancient Mineral people are the original source, but Swanson may have the same stuff for less money. If money is a problem, you can also buy the flakes and mix up your own brine. Apparently it isn't exactly the same, but close. Magnesium chloride.

          For that matter, if you are close to a fairly warm ocean, I've read someplace that swimming in the sea for about a half hour will get some magnesium into you through your skin. I think that rubbing on the "oil" (it's also called "transdermal magnesium") is more certain.

          If this works for you, could you get back onto the thread and tell us? I had only minor cramping, but it seems to be gone now, and my sleep has greatly improved.


          • #6
            Originally posted by Metismomma View Post
   much salt do you get in a day?
            I'd say you've fingered a likely possibility there.

            He or she says "WHY didnt this happen BEFORE i went primal?"

            For example, bread is not in Mark's plan, and that has a fair amount of salt in it. Same for "breakfast cereal". And processed foods and ready meals have plenty in - probably too much - so if someone's dropped those, too, but isn't specifically adding any to food ...

            And the hot weather's now here. That'll make you sweat a lot, and if you drink a lot of water you lose too many salts. You can tell sometimes - because your sweat stops stinging.

            I'd suggest the original poster buys some good quality unrefined seasalt, such as Celtic Salt, and sprinkles a little on his or her food. A good rehydration drink for when one's been sweating a lot is:

            the juice of one lime (or half a lemon or a quarter of a grapefruit)
            top up with water
            add a tiny pinch of seasalt.


            • #7
              Hmmm...Well, on fit day I am ususally at 500 mg of calcium - about 50% of daily reccomended and I do not supplement it. So, maybe that is the culprit? also, I do use some salt - mostly Himalayan pink salt. About 1/2 teaspoon per day. my sodium intake is usually around 100& on fit day.

              but I have read we may not need all that calcium? i am in an abyss of supplementation confusion!


              • #8
                Supplemental confusion is natural these days. There are so many new substances and discoveries, and everything seems to interact.

                Magnesium is needed (along with protein and Vitamin D) to properly absorb and use calcium. Do you supplement with Vitamin D?

                I just ordered some "coral calcium" to try as a supplement now that my magnesium status is improved. Lots of trace minerals in it.


                • #9
                  Nope. not yet. looking into cod liver oil. Off to eat some greek yogurt and a banana and up my carb total for the day to 115 g. Oh well. I guess if I am under 150, its ok. I am not trying to lose alot...


                  • #10
                    I had a bunch of posts about this topic! I was waking up with wicked charlie horses in my legs, it was awful. I started taking an electrolyte supplement on super hot/humid/extensive workout days and once the cramps lessened I switched over to using trace mineral drops in my water. I don't know WHICH of the minerals in this stuff I needed but I haven't had any cramps since using it. The one i'm using supplies you with 63%DV of mag, if you're curious.


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by invino77 View Post
                      so, i have been having cramps in my calves at night. charley horses. horrbile.
                      How much D are you taking?

                      I know you mentioned fitday is telling you you're getting enough mg and K but I'm not buying it. Fitday has so many inaccuracies in their database and their algorithm that I just don't trust the data it puts out.

                      I'd more closely track mg and K, then if it's still happening and you're getting 400 mg K and plenty of K in ratio to Na and Kcal (see my linked doc below), then see your physician. There are some medical issues that can cause cramping.

                      I can't take any mg citrate either fwiw. The only mg supplement that's tolerable for my gut is Jigsaw Health's time released magnesium dimalate. and I do take potassium as needed to balance Na and Kcal - though I try not to rely on it. I use Now potassium gluconate powder....500+ mg K per tsp.....I dose according to Na/kcal intake

                      iherb referral code CIL457- $5 off first order


                      • #12
                        Try the potassium pills....they are cheap, and work well for me. Unlike some others, I have never had stomach issues due to them.

                        If they don't only lost a few bucks!


                        • #13
                          Well, last night was a bit better had a few minor cramps instead of the usual huge one. I am thinking I will try an electrolyte supp with mag/K and maybe supplement calcium. At this point, I am not supplementing D - It is summer, I am in the sun daily and i eat alot of fish.

                          None of this answers the BIG question though - WHY don't I get cramps when I eat teh SAD diet, and I do get them when I am eating primally? I remember having had cramps on other low carb diest too - so it must be related to this aspect. Which makes me think that Low carb is NOT correct.

                          Perhaps I need to up my intake of potatoes, fruits and other carby veggies.

                          I can feel the kilow already!


                          • #14
                            While you're searching for the correct mineral solution, whenever cramps hit, point your toes HARD up, toward your shins, and hold till the cramp eases. This usually makes the cramp go away for me. If i don't do this, the cramps just escelate to extreme pain and I have sore calf muscles in the morning. You may have to do this several times during the night, but it works in the moment. And, of course, keep working to right the imbalance that's causing it to begin with...


                            • #15
                              Well, i found a magnesium/potassium supplement that is magnesium aspartate and potassium aspartate. Is that what I want? Or do I want another form? so confusing. I am half considerring going back to eating grains and pasta so things can be simpler!!!! I still cannot understand what is it about the primal diet that causes this need for supplementation - and the SAD diet did not?