Learn How To Prevent Leg Cramps!

Author: Shannon Miller

Late night leg cramps can be a killer.

Iron supplements in your prenatal vitamins or a lack of calcium may be to blame. But it’s always important to keep taking your prenatal vitamins.


  • To avoid cramps stay hydrated. Drink plenty of fluids and avoid caffeine.
  • Make sure you are getting enough calcium. You need 1200 mg of calcium a day while you are pregnant or nursing. If you don’t get this through food or milk make sure to ask your doctor about a calcium supplement.
  • Some people believe eating bananas will help. Growing up my father would always tell me to eat a banana if I was having muscle cramps from gym. The potassium in bananas is thought to help. My philosophy; it certainly can’t hurt. Bananas are high in fiber, helping with constipation, and are a wonderful source of energy. They were a staple during my gymnastics career and continues to be a regular part of my diet during pregnancy.
  • Before you get in bed take a few minutes to stretch your calf muscles.
    • Stand facing the bed or near a wall for support.
    • With your foot flat on the ground bend your knee until you feel the stretch.
    • Hold for 5-10 seconds.
    • Repeat on other leg.

After The Fact:

Even if you’ve done all of the above, you may still have a cramp from time to time. If this happens, immediately flex your foot. If you are at the beginning of the cramp you will likely be able to avoid it. This may take some doing but once you get your foot flexed the calf muscle will completely relax and you’ll have instant relief. Depending on how long the cramp lasts you may be a bit sore the next day.

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