Most of us know that the human body is over 50% water, yet we still tend to deprive our bodies of the fluid it needs. Though we are getting better, in today’s world, we often reach for sugary and flavored beverages instead of sticking with basic glass of water; consequently, we can still feel thirsty after sipping from our drinks. Many people experience symptoms of weakness, dizziness, and headaches when they’re dehydrated, but most are unaware that their cramping muscles may also be a result of their dehydration.
Everyone’s muscles cramp, whether one leads an active or sedentary lifestyle. Cramps are abnormal muscle contractions that can be inconvenient and painful, and most occur as a result of a muscle being overworked, strained, or exposed to extreme temperatures. Muscles can also cramp as a result of dehydration, so it’s important to drink plenty of fluids. As always, the best drink for your body is water.
Dehydration can disrupt your body’s balance of electrolytes, specifically potassium and sodium. Electrolyte imbalance can result in muscle cramping, as can a lack of important minerals like magnesium and calcium. Ensuring that your diet contains sufficient amounts of these can also help you steer clear of unwanted cramps. Gatorade type rehydration drinks are often helpful at restoring the proper electrolyte balance once it is lost, but it is always easier and better for your body and athletic function to stay ahead of the game. Prehydrate.
Treating your cramps with massages, stretches, and heat only works to address the pain once it arrives. Maintaining a well-balanced diet and staying hydrated can act as preventative measures against cramps, saving you unnecessary pain.