June 29, 2022

4 Ways to Combat Restless Legs Syndrome

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Restless legs syndrome can turn what should be a restful night’s sleep into a frustrating, sleepless one. It’s estimated that between 7 and 10 percent of Americans deal with the issue, which is an uncomfortable feeling in the legs that gives you the urge to move them. It usually occurs at night, while either sitting or lying down, especially if you are tired or had an active day. It can reduce the amount or quality of sleep, then sleep deprivation can cause a whole host of other general health problems.

Fortunately, there are ways to help calm those restless legs down. Centers Health Care has four ways to help calm the issue.

  1. Healthy Diet of Iron, Magnesium, and Folate

While there are no firm causes of restless legs syndrome, research shows that deficiencies in these minerals can lead to the problem rearing its ugly head. These foods are high in at least one or more of these minerals: spinach, asparagus, whole grains, edamame, red meat, salmon, eggs, and legumes. Magnesium supplements can also help.

  1. Set a Cut-off Time for Caffeine

If restless legs syndrome is affecting you at night, take a look at your caffeine intake. If you’re having any after lunchtime, especially if you are not getting enough water during the day, it could have an adverse effect on you in the evening. It’s also recommended to not take in over 400 milligrams of caffeine (about four cups of coffee) per day.

  1. Stretch

Stretching can reduce stiffness and ease tension in the legs. Focus on stretches of the quad, calf, and hamstring muscles that you can perform in the evening or before bedtime.

  1. Staying Active

Increasing activity quickly after a period of inactivity can bring on symptoms, so it’s important to have a regular exercise routine that keeps your muscles working. Even light to moderate exercise is fine as long as you stick with it—at least five days per week is recommended.

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