Why You are Getting Keto Leg Cramps—and How to Defeat Them
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Have you ever laid in bed at night, eyes closed, right on the verge of slipping into a deep sleep, when crippling pain and stiffness begin to seize your toes, foot, or calf muscle? Muscle cramps can happen to anyone at any time for multiple reasons. Unfortunately, severe leg cramps can even happen amongst those on a low-carb or ketogenic diet—we refer to them as keto leg cramps.
Not everyone who adopts the keto lifestyle will be afflicted with leg cramps. If you do experience the disturbing tingling that leads to an agonizing charlie horse with long lasting soreness, you should know that this can change.
There are reasons your leg muscles may begin to stiffen and cramp causing you pain. If you think it is a symptom of your diet that won't go away, that can cause you to needlessly abandon a diet that may be doing great things for your body. Instead of throwing in the towel, understand that this symptom may go away with the right action.
If you experience leg cramps, especially leg cramps at night, you are probably desperate for a leg cramps remedy.
In this article, we will go over the reasons you are experiencing these muscle cramps and what you can do about it so you can kiss keto leg cramps goodbye.
- 3 Reasons why you are Getting Keto Leg Cramps
- Are You Still Getting Leg Cramps?
- Bonus - A Few More Things To Watch Out For
3 Reasons Why You are Getting Keto Leg Cramps
There are three main causes that contribute to muscle cramping while on the keto diet. Nocturnal leg cramps are often a side effect of high blood pressure and cholesterol medications. It can also be a symptom that occurs when trying to get into ketosis.
An electrolyte deficiency may even play a part. For example, not having enough potassium or magnesium. However, there are natural and simple things you can do that may benefit your situation. One of the first things you should do is make sure you are sticking to your low carb ketogenic diet accompanied with my Electrolyte Powder.
1. Medication Side Effects
Medications, especially those for high blood pressure and cholesterol can cause keto leg cramps in some people. This is because of the way these medications affect the contraction and relaxation of the muscles. Medications may be the most popular cause of nocturnal leg cramps for those on a low-carb diet.
Nocturnal leg cramps can be especially hard for people to try to live with. Beyond the awful pain of the cramps themselves, they can also lead to insomnia or increase the risk of night falls.
What you can do about it
Switching to a low-carb diet like the ketogenic diet may help support healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels . The keto diet and ketosis are all about getting you healthy, so then your doctor may reduce the medications that are causing you problems. Of course, you should always consult with your physician before altering your medication regimen.
After you decide to make the switch to healthy keto, you need to try my Electrolyte Powder. This convenient and tasty powder mixed with water will rehydrate your cells and help you reach your health goals. It has tons of other benefits and zero sugar—be sure to check it out.
2. Keto Adaptation
Healthy KetoTM is a natural state that your body is in when it starts burning fat for energy. To achieve ketosis, you must stick to a low carb ketogenic diet otherwise known as a low carb keto diet.
A low-carb diet like the low carb ketogenic diet is taken advantage of not only for weight loss but for many other reasons as well. Many experts believe that ketosis and the ketogenic diet are beneficial in many ways to the entire body.
However, as your body enters a state of ketosis, you will likely experience a few side effects. A few of these side effects may include flu-like symptoms and none other than our topic here—keto leg cramps.
Even though the low carb keto diet may help you defeat keto leg cramps, entering ketosis while on the ketogenic diet may also cause keto leg cramps. However, they will typically go away as your body gets used to using fat for fuel.
If you are coming off of a high carb diet before trying the ketogenic diet for weight loss, you may be more likely to get keto leg cramps because of an electrolyte deficiency.
What you can do about it
First off, don't abandon your low carb ketogenic diet. Even though you may be getting keto leg cramps as a result of entering ketosis, it is important to keep in mind that the keto diet is still doing many incredible things for your body.
You may want to try a few of my supplements that will help you when you are first starting the keto diet and are beginning intermittent fasting that will lead to ketosis. My specially formulated Electrolyte Powder will replenish your electrolytes and will give you energy as you become keto-adapted.
3. An Electrolyte Deficiency
An electrolyte deficiency is typically the most common cause of keto leg cramps. Electrolytes are essentially electrically charged minerals that help the connectivity of certain things in the body—specifically muscles and nerves. They also push fluid in and out of the body's cells.
The two most common electrolytes, or electrically charged minerals, that play a role in muscle cramps are:
Magnesium is a helper mineral in over 300 enzymes which means it is involved in anything nerve and muscular. Potassium controls cell energy and is involved in the cell pump. Both Magnesium and potassium play a crucial part in relaxing the body and giving it a sense of calm. The minerals essentially allow the muscles to fully relax and not cramp.
If you have an electrolyte deficiency, you are likely to experience fatigue, muscle weakness, tremors, arrhythmias, and leg cramps.
What you can do about it
It is crucial that you get enough potassium and magnesium either through your diet or through supplements. To get the amount of these electrolytes you need through your diet, you will need to turn to leafy green vegetables.
Leafy green vegetables are an excellent source of both magnesium and potassium. I recommend consuming 7-10 cups of leafy green vegetables a day. You should eat about half of these greens cooked and the other raw.
Do you still find it difficult to get all of those powerful leafy veggies in? In that case, give my Veggie Solution a try. It will help you get the veggies you need in a simple and easy way and it even comes flavored and unflavored.
If you find yourself getting bloated after eating this amount of leafy veggies each day it is possible you have an intestinal problem and you may need to lower the amount.
Are You Still Getting Leg Cramps?
Maybe you have tried all of this. You are consuming enough electrolytes through your diet or supplements, you have successfully been in ketosis for some time now, and your low-carb diet has now allowed you to cut back on medications.
But, you are still getting leg cramps. Why?
Don't give up hope. It may be because of a few simple reasons. Your salt may be too high and you need to learn how to regulate it or, your blood Ph is off and you need to learn how to keep it at the right level.
Regulate Your Salt
One of the reasons you may still be experiencing keto leg cramps is because your salt is too high. You may have heard before to increase your intake of sea salt and this can get confusing. This is different, if you are eating a lot of greens and getting cramps, you need to cut back on your salt a little bit.
On the other hand, if you are on a low carb ketogenic diet and you are not consuming enough greens but you are still doing a lot of salts, you will throw off your salt ratio. In this case, all you need to do is consume a little bit more of the leafy greens.
Regulating your salt balance may help you finally get rid of leg cramps altogether.
Adjust Your Blood PH
If you feel you are doing everything right and you are still getting cramps, your blood PH may be off. Your blood should actually be slightly alkaline. However, if your blood is too alkaline, it can cause twitching and cramping.
Adding apple cider vinegar to your water throughout the day may help get your PH to the right level. It will help your blood PH to be not so alkaline and you should be able to absorb essential minerals like magnesium and potassium better.
To absorb the minerals you need to prevent keto leg cramps, your blood PH needs to be at the right level.
*Bonus - A Few More Things To Watch Out For
We all know the saying, "too much of a good thing can be a bad thing." Unfortunately, this little saying is far too relevant when it comes to most things. Keeping this rule in mind can even help with your keto leg cramps.
Along with a ketogenic diet and getting plenty of veggies and electrolytes to avoid keto leg cramps—here are a few things to make sure you don't have too much of in your life.
- Sitting for too long without breaks
- Too much athletic exertion
- Drinking too much wine
- Having too much caffeine
*Any comments on our blog or websites relating to weight loss results may or may not be typical and your results will vary depending on your diet and exercise habits.
***Always consult a professional before making any significant changes to your health.