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leosmith

Do you get leg cramps at night while in ketosis?

Do you get leg cramps at night while in ketosis?  

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  1. 1. Do you get leg cramps at night while in ketosis?



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leosmith

Do you get leg cramps at night while in ketosis? I'm getting them every night now, so I've finally decided to follow the advice given in The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Performance - take time release magnesium 3 times daily for 20 days, consume a couple of bouillon cubes daily to increase sodium, get enough dietary magnesium and potassium. I just drank my bullion for today, and am waiting for my supplements to come in the mail 2 days from now. I've checked my numbers in cronometer, and potassium is a little low, but nothing startling. I'm disappointed salting the heck out of my food and taking "normal" magnesium supplements twice a day, for well above the RDA, didn't work. If this new thing doesn't work, it's back to carbs for me. Yes, the cramps are that bad.

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Kit

Can't guarantee I'm in ketosis since I don't have a meter to check keytones.  But I don't get muscle cramps.

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Seagal

Dr. Carolyn Dean's "The Magnesium Miracle" is a good reference book to have on hand.  Some magnesium is useless, or maybe I should say non-effective.

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Fishallot

When I originally got into ketosis I used to get them bad in the middle of the night when I was sleeping. Talk about waking up in screaming agony!!!! I learned about the supplements from the same place as you and although I only added the bouillon cube it solved the problem. I use MFP which tracks my sodium intake and I found that any day i'm below 3000mg of sodium if I drink 1 cube I never get cramps anymore. 

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hexex0

I did.  Like Fishallot, being startled awake, moving your let and feeling that "pang" in your muscle that quickly turns into horror as you realize what's about to happen, then the muscle just cramps and cramps and it seems to go on forever.  I'm not on keto now, but I was never able to overcome it regardless of what I supplemented with or ate.  Some of them were so bad that I limped around for the remainder of the day.  :huh:

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leosmith

I get leg cramps only when I'm dehydrated. Try drinking more water.

This is a good point, but I get plenty of water. In fact, I've probably overdone it on occasion, thinking that more is better for cramps, and thus flushing more electrolytes than I should. 

 

Dr. Carolyn Dean's "The Magnesium Miracle" is a good reference book to have on hand.  Some magnesium is useless, or maybe I should say non-effective.

Thanks - I suspect she's right, judging from my limited experience. I might have to read it.

 

I did.  Like Fishallot, being startled awake, moving your let and feeling that "pang" in your muscle that quickly turns into horror as you realize what's about to happen, then the muscle just cramps and cramps and it seems to go on forever.  I'm not on keto now, but I was never able to overcome it regardless of what I supplemented with or ate.  Some of them were so bad that I limped around for the remainder of the day.  :huh:

You're scaring me man! I hope I can find a solution, because I don't want to try this bizarre 50% complex carb diet I've concocted if I have to get out of ketosis. I can totally relate to the frightening super tight muscles that wake you up in the middle of the night. Sometimes places other than calves are affected, but they go away quickly. What normally happens is my calf locks with my toe pointed, and I have to roll out of bed and let my body weight push my foot back into position. Sometimes I feel sore the next day, sometimes I don't.

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comedy

I used to take magnesium for agonising leg cramps long before I was diagnosed with diabetes, let alone keto-adapted. One over-the-counter magnesium citrate tablet works for me.

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hexex0

You're scaring me man! I hope I can find a solution, because I don't want to try this bizarre 50% complex carb diet I've concocted if I have to get out of ketosis. I can totally relate to the frightening super tight muscles that wake you up in the middle of the night. Sometimes places other than calves are affected, but they go away quickly. What normally happens is my calf locks with my toe pointed, and I have to roll out of bed and let my body weight push my foot back into position. Sometimes I feel sore the next day, sometimes I don't.

 

For what it's worth, I stuck with keto regardless because the other benefits outweighed the occasional cramp for me.  I am seriously considering going back on the diet, despite my doctor's strong suggestion that I eat a "more balanced" diet.  Every joint in my body aches when I eat carbs, and I'm only eating <= 80g a day.  The leg cramps seem like a small price to pay to avoid constant pain.

 

But, anyway, I do think as others have suggested that it's a factor of hydration as well as elecrolytes (which are also related, with keto, since without the carbohydrate the body can't hold onto water and you're flushing the salts.)  This seemed to be more extreme for me than others I know on keto -- with risk of TMI, I spent more time in the rest room losing water than I could possibly replace.  One thing I didn't get around to trying which was the next experiment on my list is to pop some supplements with a large glass of water immediately before bed -- I was taking everything in the morning.  But, I would assume your time-release would cover that.

 

Best of luck.

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comedy

This is a good point, but I get plenty of water. In fact, I've probably overdone it on occasion, thinking that more is better for cramps, and thus flushing more electrolytes than I should. 

 

Thanks - I suspect she's right, judging from my limited experience. I might have to read it.

 

You're scaring me man! I hope I can find a solution, because I don't want to try this bizarre 50% complex carb diet I've concocted if I have to get out of ketosis. I can totally relate to the frightening super tight muscles that wake you up in the middle of the night. Sometimes places other than calves are affected, but they go away quickly. What normally happens is my calf locks with my toe pointed, and I have to roll out of bed and let my body weight push my foot back into position. Sometimes I feel sore the next day, sometimes I don't.

Those are the same cramps I used to get, and still get if I stop taking magnesium as I did a few months ago to try to get rid of a persistent diarrhoea. But taking OTC magnesium again stopped the cramps once more.

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leosmith

One over-the-counter magnesium citrate tablet works for me.

That's great. I've been trying it, and despite it's rather large dose, it has no effect on me.

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OldTech

I get them from time to time. I'm still suspicious that in my case it is a sodium deficiency. I already take magnesium (400 mg) and I tried taking extra potasium with no results. I also drink plenty of water so I am not dehydrated especially at night. 

 

The reason that I think it is a sodium deficiency is that 'eating' some extra salt seems to calm my legs down. It seems to work even in the middle of the night. So it is something that I am watching to see if I can confirm it.

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Oriana

hexexo--if carbs are giving you severe joint pain you may have develpoed a allergy to wheat or gluten. this happened to me in 2009 and it took years to figure out what was wrong. i couldnt walk or stand for more than a few minutes. i had very limited range of motion also. if you want more carbs try avoiding gluten.

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jwags

I do moderate carb and drink tons of water and still get the leg cramps. I use magneaium before bed which does help, but I still get them especially when I drive long distances. I now wear compression socks when I drive.

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leosmith

Alright, great news - only one very short-lived, un-painful cramp last night. Best night I've had since I ate that whole pizza a couple weeks ago. So the bouillon cubes worked. I ate 2 more today, and will continue it for a while at least. I hear most people who take them tend to do it consistently, and I don't have a problem with that. I'm not a believer in the whole "less than 1.5g sodium per day" philosophy. As far as I can tell, there is not much science behind that. I believe 3-5g is the healthy range, and that's for people who aren't in ketosis. So if the 2 cubes make my total 4-5g/day, I'm not bothered.

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synger

I have mobility problems, and when I first get into ketosis I tend toward leg cramps.  Not calf cramps, though I've had those too... my nemesis is inner thigh cramps.  Fire from knee to groin, lying in bed, unable to uncurl due to the pain cramps. 

 

What helps for me is to take magnesium every day, stay hydrated, and avoid alcohol when actively losing water (I gauge it by how often I am urinating).  When I'm solidly in ketosis, I can have a glass of wine without too much trouble, but more than that and I risk cramps. 

 

Also, I am trying to walk more, slow as I am, because my doc thinks part of the reason I get thigh cramps is because my legs are not as strong as they used to be, and the muscles in the inner thighs are not balanced with the muscles on the outer thigh.  So more gentle exercise, and more stretching seem to help , too

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sbwertz

This is a good point, but I get plenty of water. In fact, I've probably overdone it on occasion, thinking that more is better for cramps, and thus flushing more electrolytes than I should. 

 

Thanks - I suspect she's right, judging from my limited experience. I might have to read it.

 

You're scaring me man! I hope I can find a solution, because I don't want to try this bizarre 50% complex carb diet I've concocted if I have to get out of ketosis. I can totally relate to the frightening super tight muscles that wake you up in the middle of the night. Sometimes places other than calves are affected, but they go away quickly. What normally happens is my calf locks with my toe pointed, and I have to roll out of bed and let my body weight push my foot back into position. Sometimes I feel sore the next day, sometimes I don't.

I don't go into ketosis.  I keep my carbs just barely above the ketosis point.  It works for me...I've been low carb for more than 20 years now. Generally I only get cramps if I have been on my feet all day, or if I have done something strenuous, like hiking.  I am more likely to get mild cramps in my feet and ankles than the big charley horse cramps in my calf.

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