Saturday, July 9, 2011
Remedies for Leg Cramps during Pregnancy
Kathie Dolce, a Physician's Assistant and a HypnoBirthing Educator, lists the remedies for leg cramps during pregnancy. I am posting this for any pregnant woman who needs relief in those last few months when cramps literally wake you up and put a death-lock on your calves, and also for myself, so I can refer back to it when I'm pregnant again. It's a long post, but it's great information, so I'm putting it all in. I hope it helps get rid of some horrible moments in your pregnancy. P.S. If you don't want to read the entire post, here's the remedy: Drink one cup of Red Raspberry Leaf Tea and Nettle Leaf Tea per day during pregnancy. The post below explains why.
Remedies for Leg Cramps
from Kathie Dolce
Too little water and/or protein in the diet are responsible for many of the discomforts of pregnancy, including high blood pressure, nausea, and leg cramps. A minimum of two quarts of water per day (and far more in the dry Colorado climate) is needed for proper hydration in pregnancy. At lease 60 grams, and preferably 75-80 grams of protein per day is recommended.
Many sources recommend extra calcium, potassium and/or magnesium to prevent leg cramps. Medical research indicates the mineral supplement most likely to help is magnesium lactate or citrate taken as 5mmol in the morning and 10mmol in the evening.
· Red Raspberry Leaf (tea or capsules) is the most easily assimilated form of calcium there is. Take a cup of tea or a capsule at least once during the day and a cup of tea or a capsule or two before bed.
· Nettle leaves is one of the finest nourishing tonics known. It is reputed to have more chlorophyll than any other herb. Vitamins A, C, D and K, calcium, potassium, phosphorous, iron and sulfur are particularly abundant in nettles. Nettle leaves nourish and strengthen the kidneys, ease leg cramps and other spasms, diminish discomfort during and after birth, prevent hemorrhage after birth, reduce hemorrhoids, and increase the richness and amount of breast milk. It can be used through pregnancy. Dosage: 1 cup of nettle leaf tea per day (same as Red Raspberry Leaf Tea).
· Liquid chlorophyll is high in magnesium and potassium. It is a good blood builder (good for postpartum) and helps a woman to function while sleep-deprived.
Avoid soft drinks, processed meats, and snack foods, which contain a lot of phosphorus. Excess phosphorus decreases the absorption of calcium and other beneficial minerals.
Avoid standing for long periods or sitting with your legs crossed.
Walk or swim as often as you can.
Rotate your ankles and wiggle your toes when sitting, at work, at dinner, or watching TV.
Stretch before bed. Stretching your calf muscles several times before you go to bed could help prevent night cramps completely.
To stop a cramp while it's occurring, flex your foot (pull you toes and foot toward your leg). Getting out of bed and walking around may also give relief.
Use warm, moist heat on the cramp.
Do several pelvic rocks IN BED (on hands and knees, tilt hips forward and let belly sag toward the bed, the tilt back to flat back, repeat several times). Then DO NOT sit up or stand up, but gently lay over on her side. This will improve the circulation to legs by getting the baby out of the pelvis and lessen the pressure on nerves and blood vessels.
Photo via The Good Doctor