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FoodWhat is the connection between salt and muscle cramps?

What is the connection between salt and muscle cramps?

Gaston de Persigny
Gaston de Persigny
Gaston de Persigny - Reporter at The European Times News

See what to do if you get a muscle spasm

It is a misconception that salt should accumulate in the body after training. Salt is also found in whole grains, nuts, and legumes. Their consumption supplies our body with a sufficient amount of sodium chloride. People who do intense sports need more salt in their diet. However, they are not the only ones affected by muscle cramps. Why do they occur?

Muscles respond to stimuli from our motor nerves. When their interaction is disturbed, the muscle reacts and a painful spasm occurs. There can be two reasons – a damaged nerve that sends more than necessary signals to the muscle, or a muscle that reacts hypersensitively to normal stimuli.

 “If someone often suffers from muscle cramps, it should be investigated,” explained neurologist Dr. Dirk Cesnik. According to him, sometimes the reasons can be related to a disease, which is important to detect in time.

The standard recommendation to relieve painful spasms is to take magnesium. Unfortunately, it doesn’t help everyone. Dr. Gernot Kühnel recommends stretching the muscles before bed.

We don’t have to cut out salt completely to be healthy, says Matthias Riedl, a nutritionist and head of the Medicum Center in Hamburg. “But we have to consume salt in moderation,” he is emphatic, DW quotes.

How to eliminate chips, soy sauce, ready-made soups or frozen pizzas from our menu? Most people cannot imagine life without salt at all. But this is exactly what the current health minister of Germany, Karl Lauterbach, has been practicing for over 30 years, because he is convinced that it is healthier.

The human body needs salt, but in limited quantities

Salt is vital. Its chemical formula is sodium chloride – especially sodium is important for the human body because it is necessary for the maintenance of important functions: it regulates the water balance, the activity of the nervous system and muscles and aids digestion. For the body to perform all these functions, we need about 1 gram of salt. This means that salt in moderation is beneficial.

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