How Do You Get Rid Of Restless Leg Syndrome?

It’s not a very common thing, but it does happen.

You’re fast asleep in the dead of night, comfortable as you can be, and suddenly your leg starts waking up. And it is not quite the usual pins-and-needles sensation of having your leg wake up from falling asleep, but something similar that is hard to describe. It’s like you can’t help but want to move the leg, and it’s generally uncomfortable.

The strangest part is, there seems to be no reason for your leg to have fallen asleep in the first place. But beyond simply bizarre, the worst part is that it won’t seem to go away. This is a condition aptly known as restless leg syndrome.

WHAT IS IT?

Restless leg syndrome (also known as Willis-Ekbom disease) is categorized as a sleep disorder because it typically occurs during hours when sleep is expected — and because it tends to disrupt sleep.

Some studies even indicate that it is triggered by rest or an attempt to sleep. It’s technically also categorized as a movement disorder given that relief is temporarily found in moving around. Ultimately, however, its best characterization is as a neurological sensory disorder, as the symptoms tend to be produced by the brain.

WHAT CAUSES IT?

According to WebMD, the cause of primary restless leg syndrome is unknown. However, studies suggest that there is a genetic component to it, those specific gene variants are associated with it, and that RLS can typically be located in families that have an onset age below 40. Interestingly, some studies link RLS with low iron levels in the brain.

More revealingly, some studies appear to link RLS with some other conditions.

Possibly a dysfunction in the basal ganglia, a brain section that controls movement — maybe a disruption in the pathways carrying dopamine, which is needed for the body to produce smooth muscle activity. The disruption of the pathways may be what causes the involuntary, jerky movements.

Some are possible causes of RLS but not conclusive:
  •    sleep apnea, or similar conditions
  •    pregnancy, particularly in the final trimester
  •    renal disease, particularly end-stage, and hemodialysis
  •    iron deficiency, as noted above
  •    intake of alcohol, coffee, and nicotine
  •    the use of certain medications, which may actually aggravate symptoms of RLS. These include antidepressants that increase the body’s levels of serotonin (sertraline or fluoxetine) and anti-nausea medicines (metoclopramide, or prochlorperazine)
  •    nerve damage, or neuropathy
HOW IS IT DIAGNOSED?

There is actually no test for RLS, which means a doctor typically evaluates a patient based on observed symptoms. Doctors usually look for five vital signs:

  1.    A powerful, sometimes overwhelming urge to move the legs, often associated with uncomfortable sensations.
  2.    The symptoms either starting or getting worse during periods of rest or otherwise being inactive.
  3.    The urge to move starting or aggravating in the evening or at night.
  4.    The urge being diminished or relieved, wholly or in part, by movement.
  5.    The absence of a medical condition causing any of the above.

The doctor may ask for additional information, such as detailed descriptions of the symptoms and the times of day when they manifest. Some information about your medical and family history may be of help in contextualizing the findings and formulating an overall diagnosis as well. In some cases, laboratory tests may be recommended first if only to rule out other possible causes such as iron deficiency anemia or kidney failure.

In other cases, a sleep study may be advised to identify other possible reasons that may be disrupting sleep, such as sleep apnea. It’s essential to provide and gather as much information as possible.

WHAT IS THE TREATMENT?

The immediate “treatment,” if you can call it like that, is to move about a bit. Sadly, the relief from this is just temporary. There may be more lasting approaches to try and control RLS symptoms, but there is no cure.

Nevertheless, the good news is that RLS does not immediately indicate the possibility of more concerning neurological diseases like Parkinson’s.  Even better, while RLS may never completely go away, some individuals have reported periods of remission — symptoms going away for days, months, or even years.

While not to a certain extent, RLS may be treated in some ways, such as by identifying the associated medical condition that may be contributing to it, whether iron deficiency anemia, diabetes, or peripheral neuropathy.

There are many options for treatment.
  1. Iron supplementation medication. Note that while this helps address the associated deficiency in iron, there is no single medication that uniformly effectively manages RLS for everyone.  Furthermore, it may be possible that regularly-taken medicines may slowly lose their effect over time, which would necessitate a change in medication.
  2. Lifestyle changes are one approach to take. Where lifestyle choices and factors may be found to contribute to RLS, they may be phased out or outright done away with. These changes may include avoiding alcohol, coffee, and nicotine, or perhaps adopting a regular sleep pattern.

One may also look into taking a moderate exercise program (probably one favoring moderately intense aerobic or leg-stretching exercises), as well as a regimen of massaging the legs or using hot or cold packs. Some new devices have been cleared for use, including a vibrating pad that helps soothe the back of the legs, and copper-lined compression socks as well.

3. Taking dopaminergic agents. These medications typically seek to increase the effect of dopamine on the body, which would enable better control of movement and reduced erratic, jerky, and involuntary movements such as those associated with RLS.

NOTE: Your doctor will almost certainly warn of the risk that chronic use may lead to worsening of the symptoms. This doesn’t happen for everyone, but some individuals have reported experiencing symptoms earlier in the day, or the restlessness beginning to affect the trunk or even the arms. The good news is that dropping the dopaminergic medication reverses this progression.

4. Compression Treatment. Wear compression socks. They help in the blood circulation. Wearing compression socks, preferably cotton compression socks that tend to be more comfortable and better tolerated at night can actually be the relief that you are looking for. Compression socks with progressive stretch technology are highly recommended for maximum comfort. To know more about cotton compression socks, click here. 

To conclude…

You can’t get rid of RLS but you can manage it with the suggestions above. If you are experiencing the early signs of RLS you should consult your doctor immediately. Manage it by taking care of your health. Take care of your legs!

Why Cotton Compression Socks are the Best Support Socks for Your Legs Every Day

There are compression socks available on Amazon at every price point but with the numberless offers available, how to judge their quality, their effectiveness or their comfort?

Very difficult indeed, but you can follow some simple guidelines to reduce the guesswork.

First in the list are the multipacks.

It is a race to the bottom, with more and more sellers offering more and more pairs for a low price. Here the choice is simple, just ask yourself: do I need compression socks or not? Because if you do, you should stay away from these cheap and flimsy synthetic socks that offer very little support if any. As my mother used to say: often you get what you pay for! And this is apparently the case.

Then you have the sporty, over-hyped compression socks

You recognize them because of the images that promise Ironman like performances at just about anything you do, be it a marathon or watching your favorite soap opera.

In this category, some of them are pretty good, especially if you can bear the flashy colors and big printed brands on a pair of nylon stockings. (I’d like to see my grandmother wearing a pair of those… 🙂

And then you have some great compression socks.

A few brands stand out if you know how to find them. They sell quality products that look good, are comfortable without all the hype. These socks usually contain a high percentage of quality cotton or wool, and their construction is different: more sturdy, knitted cuffs and just better finished.

For a good pair of compression socks made with a high percentage of natural fibers, the prices range in the region of $25.

Expensive! You may say, but are they really?

A pair of high-end compression socks will do what it is supposed to do, which is compress and support the tissues in your lower legs enhancing blood flow, reduce fatigue and lessen or prevent varicose veins.

And they will do so day in and day out for a pretty long time. Also, consider that with just 2 pairs you can take proper care of your legs every day for much longer than all the socks in 2 multipacks will ever do.

And the winner is…

Out of the thousands of brands available on Amazon.com, the one that offers by far the best value for money for a high-quality pair of Cotton Compression Socks is SocksLane.

Priced under $20 SocksLane’s products are seriously the best deal you can get when it comes to high-end compression socks.

These are top-rated cotton compression socks that are hypoallergenic, comfortable, effective and affordable. And they look good too!

The company over-delivers too in terms of customer support, extended product guarantees and a personal touch that only a small business can provide.

So, what makes SocksLane’s cotton compression socks stand out?

SocksLane’s products are designed to solve real problems and provide true value to the people using them.

Amanda and Dave, the company’s owners, have worked hard to create their compression socks that meet and exceed their customers’ expectations. The result is quality merchandise they’re proud to put their name behind.

Amanda and Dave lead a team of passionate people whose sole focus is to provide a superior product that lives up to their high standard.

The company is built on small business values such as integrity, customer care, and honesty. Their philosophy is simple, customer service and attention to detail are non-negotiable, and each customer is a member of their family—they deserve a fast, friendly, and helpful customer care and the whole team go out of their way to make sure their customers are happy.

Conclusion

If you don’t want to waste any more money on compression socks and products that don’t work, then we warmly invite you to check out their Cotton Compression Socks here.

Still not convinced? Read the reviews on Amazon.com here and judge for yourself, they are all from real people just like you.

Should You Really Take 10,000 Steps Daily?

Let’s get Physical! Physical!

Getting and staying fit has really taken off! It has become more popular in the last several years. We’ve come to really embrace the fitness lifestyle, turning it into less of the standalone lifestyle that it was in the 80s and more of a part of every other lifestyle.

We’ve started looking more closely into what we eat, more intelligently deciding on what to incorporate into our routines, and even wearing specialized watches that keep track of our biometrics and our movements. That last development coincided with the widespread belief that we have to take 10,000 steps a day to stay healthy.

TRIVIA: Manpo-Kei
Not many know this, but the whole 10,000 steps idea came from the practice of using Japanese pedometers in the 1960s. The term “manpo-kei” means “10,000 steps meter”.

This is a neat little trivia bit because otherwise, it’s often a source of confusion where the nice round (and pretty steep) number of 10,000 comes from. Of course, over time, the number has become a solid goal backed up by up by research, which has shown that if partnered up with healthy lifestyle choices it can help reduce the likelihood of various chronic illnesses, including metabolic syndromes, heart disease, and diabetes.

All this sounds like a great deal in exchange for essentially walking a lot. But does it need to be a solid 10k?

Give Up Now? No Way!

We might feel a bit guilty about not meeting that target, and some have even been known to give up if they can’t make that particular number — some even before trying it, already thinking their little attempts won’t make a difference.

The good news is that while the numbers we need to do before we see results are still significant, they’re far from impossible to do. (If you think about it, you actually go through a heck of a lot of steps a day, and 10,000 is probably not very far away from what you’re currently doing).

So all these second-guessing moments where we talk ourselves out of giving it a shot don’t need to be how we end up at all!

The even better news is that 10,000 isn’t a hard and fast number, although it is a perfect one. The American Center for Disease and Control doesn’t outright specify 10,000 as the magic number, but it does note that 150 minutes of activity a week (that comes to about 30 minutes a day) is quite helpful.

As per research, adults trying to meet that target have been known to reach a count of 7,500 steps a day, which is already a great start. Some even hold that you CAN do 10,000 steps without leaving the house! Check this video out!

As such, 10,000 could already be seen as an even higher level of activity rather than a minimum. Going above and beyond that range brings in even more benefits: a recent study in Scotland notes that postal workers walking 15,000 steps a day were shown to have much fewer heart disease risk factors.

Not a bad deal. In any event, the main thing is to get moving.

HOW TO GET MOVING
First, get yourself a pedometer.

It doesn’t have to be a fancy watch, as old-school pedometers do a perfectly good job at keeping track of your steps. The important thing is to have a counter, as beyond the actual task of counting the steps the pedometer will help you stay interested in the movement.

When you can actually see what you’ve already accomplished and got a feel for how close to the goal that is, it’s a valuable mind-conditioning thing. Motivation is an easy thing to get going.

Do simple things to build up those steps.

Going to work, the grocery store or the mall? Park at the end of the lot and walk the rest of the way. That’s additional steps going there, and additional steps going back. Merely taking the scenic route is also sure to add steps by definition. Then while actually at work, take a short break — 5 to 10 minutes won’t go amiss — every hour to break up your sedentary block of time and give your body some physical activity to break that inertia. These steps will already add a reasonable degree of physical activity to your previous tally.


Build up the steps incrementally.

You don’t have to hit 10,000 right off the bat. First, getting the pedometer will give you an idea of how close or far you are to that goal (or the more manageable 7,500). Once you have a concrete idea of where you are, you can then make the necessary tweaks. The whole idea of the steps is to set a goal to get you moving.

You can start by getting yourself into the 3,000 to 4,000 step range, which is already notable in terms of increase for someone living a sedentary lifestyle. You can increase from there. 

Remember…

Take it slow and pace yourself.

You don’t want to injure yourself by shooting for too much too soon. Physician Michael Roizen puts it best when he says “the goal is to do four more steps today than you did yesterday.” This is an excellent way to ground the idea of increased physical activity, keeping it realistic and reasonable enough to help avoid overtaxing yourself and putting yourself in harm’s way.

#10000stepsdaily #lifegoals

 

Top 3 Recipes That Can Relieve Leg Pain

Coming back from pain can be a pretty heavy experience. If it’s leg pain, all the more so. Imagine how much work our legs do in a day, and you can see right away how recovering from a leg injury or even old-fashioned day-to-day wear and tear is a tough task.

Our legs lift our body weight up and sustain it whenever we walk, crouch, climb stairs, get out of bed… we don’t even have to run or jump for the strain to be pretty considerable. Anything from cramps to strains to overuse injuries to inflammation can stop us on a dime, and even start getting worse from there.

Relief comes in many forms, not least the traditional RICE cure.

R for Rest involves, well, resting the affected joint or muscle by taking your weight off it and not having it do much, if any, work.

I for Ice leverages the contraction-causing, pain-dulling power of cold; strapping some cold packs onto the affected joint or muscle can help reduce inflammation and soothe the pain.

C for Compression is best done with some wraps or compression socks or stockings and can have a noticeable pain-relieving, circulation-improving effect over time. Finally,

E for Elevation involves keeping the affected part raised, putting gravity to work for you in helping the circulation speed up healing.

Beyond RICE, though, there are lifestyle changes that can be made to improve your odds of getting back on your literal feet after leg cramps or other leg pain. Just making some smart eating choices can have a profound effect on how quickly your body knits itself back together and easing the leg cramps or leg pain into being a thing of the past.

SWEET POTATO SLICES

One reason cramps happen is a low level of potassium, and increasing our potassium levels can be done with this complex-carbohydrate-rich root crop. Just slice some sweet potatoes into round slices, and toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper — or add some cayenne powder if you want to jazz up that mellow flavor with some heat — and roast for 25 minutes at 400 degrees. These are generally good for a spicy side dish, or an afternoon snack — but sweet potatoes can also be quite filling.

HEARTY LENTIL SOUP

Lentils, along with beans, provide excellent levels of potassium that can help fight cramps. Start by prepping 1 chopped onion, 1/4 cup of olive oil, 2 diced carrots, 2 sliced stalks of celery, 2 minced cloves of garlic, 1 bay leaf, 1 teaspoon of dried oregano, 2 tablespoons vinegar, 1 can of crushed tomatoes, 8 cups water, 1 teaspoon of dried basil, 1/2 cup thinly-sliced spinach, and of course, 2 cups of dry lentils. Heat the oil over medium heat in a large soup pot, then add in the carrots, onions, and celery, stirring until the onion is just tender. At this point, the bay leaf, basil, oregano, and garlic may be mixed in and cooked for two minutes.

Afterward come the lentils, the water, and the tomatoes. This mix is the soup beginning to take shape. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and keep the soup simmering for an hour. Then add in the spinach, cooking until it wilts, and then the vinegar. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and, if you want, some more vinegar. One cup of lentils gives you 15/5 of your RDA of potassium — this doubles that.

LEMON-ROSEMARY SALMON

15% of your RDA of potassium can be had in just six ounces of wild salmon, and this dish packs enough for up to four people (or 60% of your RDA of potassium, if you want to make all this for yourself — you could have one serving for each meal, or one meal a day for four days).

For that matter, according to Mayo Clinic, salmon is an excellent protein, full of inflammation-fighting, cortisol-lowering omega-3 fatty acids as well. This dish infuses it with pure citrus and salt flavors that balance our the fishy taste, and some fragrant herby flavor that works well with salmon as well.


This easy recipe requires an oven preheated to 400 degrees Fahrenheit, 20 minutes of cooking time (and 10 minutes or so to prep), and yields a good meal for four. The prep time mainly involves a bit of slicing (the lemon), chopping and crushing (the herbs), and — well, that’s it, unless you want to do the fish cutting and breakdown yourself. (You can get the separate fillets, or have a full serving of salmon cut up for you, at the fishmongers).

Start with 1 and a half pounds of wild salmon (or four fillets of six ounces each), a quarter cup of fresh lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, 2 tablespoons of fresh rosemary that has been crushed and chopped, and one lemon, sliced into rounds.

Lay the salmon flat on a sheet pan, and pour lemon juice over it. Sprinkle salt and rosemary over the fish, and then lay lemon slices down on top of the protein. Bake this for up to 20 minutes. If you’ve got a cooking thermometer with a probe, check for 135 degrees Fahrenheit in the interior of the meat.

 

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Who says leg pain relief is not delicious. You can always be creative in finding remedies for your leg pain. Try one of the recipes above this week!

 

3 SUREFIRE HOME REMEDIES FOR MOMS TO BE TO STRESS LESS

Being a new mom is a daunting idea to consider, but an exciting one as well. There’s a lot of adjusting that will need to be done, and a lot of things to learn, unlearn and relearn.

Becoming a mother is something different people get “good” at in different ways and at different paces, but even though we tell ourselves that (and other people tell us too), feeling pressure can be almost inevitable. So, we try to learn as much as we can in the lead-up to the big day, and even after that. After all, something as simple as knowing some good home remedies for various things is a very “mom” thing to have, and it’s incredibly helpful, too.

Here are some home remedies that a mom-to-be might find useful.
REMEDIES FOR ANEMIA

According to Consumer Health Digest, Anemia, happens when your body lacks of healthy RBC’s (red blood cells). Having a low red blood cells count is not a good thing, because it may compromise how well oxygen is carried through your body. Pregnancy anemia is, therefore, something that needs to be dealt with as soon as possible, given that you’re pumping blood for two.

Now, pregnancy anemia is difficult to avoid in the first place, about 50% of all women get anemia while pregnant. First of all,, the whole “you’re pumping blood for two” situation results in your body carrying up to 40% more fluid in your veins, with a lot of the blood rushing to bring nutrients to your little one. And anemia is even more likely to occur if your last pregnancy was fairly recent or if you’re carrying twins or more. Anemia usually manifests itself as excessive fatigue, shortness of breath, irregular or rapid heart rate, brain fog, and so on — be careful however, other conditions can cause many of the symptoms, so get a proper diagnosis.

Fighting anemia calls for getting some more iron, vitamin B12, and folate in the body. One way to do this is to up the protein intake, especially red meat. A single ounce of beef already contains 1.4mg of iron (an ounce of ground beef cuts that down to less than half), and liver is also known to be high in the vital mineral.

For vegetarians or women avoiding meat during pregnancy for any other reason, non-heme iron is present in vegetables such as beans, spinach, and lentils. However, non-heme iron is harder for the body to absorb. Molasses — used in gingerbread, and great for lattes — give up a lot of iron, potassium, and vitamin B6. Cut down on things like milk and most teas, because they inhibit iron absorption by half. Herbal remedies like a tea using nettle, dandelion, and alfalfa are also recommended.

REMEDIES FOR CRAMPS

Yup, these are usually part and parcel of any pregnancy. There are many reasons cramps even come up — from your body being low on potassium and calcium, putting on a lot of weight during the pregnancy, or happening to be carrying more than one baby.

Cramps can be prevented or lessened by maintaining a healthy diet that keeps a reasonable level of those essential nutrients — magnesium, calcium, vitamin C — to avoid running low. Magnesium is found in dates, sweet corn, figs, apples, and green vegetables, while calcium is, of course, prevalent in dairy, salmon, dried beans, and sunflower seeds. Citrus fruits like oranges and lemons (and clementines) have lots of vitamin C, which can also be found in leafy greens and tomatoes. You’ll notice this is all meat-free, which is why vegetarian diets can reduce the frequency and severity of leg cramps.

Taking a warm bath before bed can also help unknot the muscles and help improve your circulation. Keep a hot water bottle, or hot pack ready in case cramps come later in the night. Massaging the affected areas with aromatherapy oil is also a popular choice.

REMEDIES FOR MORNING SICKNESS


Ah, one of the less glamorous parts of pregnancy. Nausea and vomiting that we call morning sickness come from a steep uptick in pregnancy hormones in the body and as many as 90% of pregnant women are affected. The hormone called human chorionic gonadotrophin is responsible for morning sickness as it is mass produced by the body in the early weeks to ensure the baby’s nutrition. As your pregnancy evolves, morning sickness goes away because the placenta takes form and takes over. Merely waiting it out means you should stop suffering from it about 14-16 weeks in.

There is usually nothing to worry about it — just keep hydrated, and monitor your weight to make sure it isn’t dropping too much over time — you can also do something to keep nauseas from getting too severe. Try relaxation therapy and other complementary therapy. Some have reported success in using acupressure (a common relief move for nausea is pressing on a specific point in the wrist — about three fingers from the crease between your forearm and hand).

Also, try to modify your eating habits eating smaller portions often rather than large servings fewer times throughout the day. Your stomach will be more tolerant to everyday food like pasta, rice, and potatoes as your stomach sensitivity may be more easily tripped by the common triggers, like spicy, oily, fatty, and fried food duringpregnancy. Finally, keep well-hydrated, because if there’s one thing that’s undoubtedly lost in vomiting, it’s fluids. Water, lemon juice, and any liquids you can manage to take and keep down should be helpful.