03 May 2011

Exercise-induced muscle cramps

Muscle cramps are painful when you're exercising. Biolineticist Keri Drake, of The Lean Aubergine Dietetic Services explains how to avoid them and how to treat them.

Muscle cramps are painful, involuntary muscle contractions that occur suddenly and can be very debilitating, especially when you’re busy exercising. Biolineticist Keri Drake, of The Lean Aubergine Dietetic Services explains how to avoid them and how to treat them.

Dehydration is believed to be a common cause of muscle cramps. As a general guideline, try to consume 500ml of fluid per hour, or 120ml every 15 minutes in order to prevent dehydration. After exercise, a balanced electrolyte recovery drink or sports drink (such as Energade or Powerade) may help to prevent muscle cramping.

Except in extreme heat or humidity, dietary intake will normally replace these losses. If you are going to be exercising in excessively hot or humid conditions, pay close attention to your salt intake.

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