Don’t assume you’re safe from muscle cramps just because you don’t do strenuous exercises. You can suffer from them even while sleeping.
Luckily, you don’t have to live in fear of muscle cramps all the time. Eating (and drinking) the right nutrients can prevent or reduce the occurrence of muscle cramps. The foods that prevent muscle cramps below are rich in these nutrients.
Foods that prevent muscle cramps
Eat these foods to prevent muscle cramps. Note that you can also use these foods to prevent cramps during menstruation.
Bananas are a good pre-workout snack to boost your energy and prevent cramps. They contain potassium, magnesium and calcium, all which help prevent cramps.
You’re more likely to get muscle cramps if you do intense workouts without proper hydration. Drink water before and during your workouts. Aim for at least 1.5 to two liters of water a day, depending on how active you are.
Feel free to drink flavored water, since it contains electrolytes. Alternatively, you can drink water infused with fruits such as oranges, watermelon or strawberries.
Avocado is one of those foods you should eat every day, due to its numerous health benefits. It’s perfect for preventing muscle cramps, since it contains a good amount of potassium.
Add it to your salads, smoothies, or eat it by itself. Remember to eat it in moderation since one large avocado can contain 400 calories.
4. Pickle Juice
Research shows that pickle juice can inhibit electrically-induced muscle cramps. The duration of the cramps was 49 seconds shorter when participants drank pickle juice instead of water.
Researchers don’t seem to agree on why pickle juice eases cramps. Some say it’s due to sodium, while others credit the benefits to the acetic acid in vinegar.
Eating watermelon will give you plenty of potassium and keep you hydrated. It may also interest you to know that watermelon is an excellent source of antioxidants that fight inflammation and oxidative stress.
Try this watermelon agua fresca to hydrate and load up on potassium before your next workout.
6. Fortified Orange Juice
Those looking to drop pounds know that juice is high in sugar and calories, but you don’t have to avoid it completely. In fact, drinking fortified orange juice occasionally can prevent cramps, since it contains magnesium and calcium.
7. Sweet Potatoes
There are many ways to cook sweet potatoes, but if you’re trying to lower your calorie intake stick to roasting and boiling. A medium-size sweet potato will give you 12 percent of the potassium you need in a day.
Beans are not exactly the kind of food you want to eat right before a workout, but eating them at any other time will prevent the occurrence of cramps, thanks to their potassium and magnesium content.
Did you know that spinach is one of the best sources of magnesium? It’s also a good source of calcium. Other dark leafy greens, such as broccoli and kale, may also be beneficial foods for preventing cramps.
Your body needs sodium for the normal flow of fluids and muscle contraction. Not only will celery give you this nutrient, but it’ll also keep you feeling full.
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