Most people, at least those who’ve never experienced it, think of restless leg syndrome (RLS) as more of a nuisance than a serious health problem. A recent study published in the Journal Neurology last month should change that thinking.
A prospective cohort study of 18,425 adult men in the USA found a 35% greater mortality over the 8 year study period for those who had RLS. When those with major chronic conditions – cancer, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, etc – were factored out, the increased rate of mortality jumped to 95% - nearly double the rate of death!
The study didn’t determine if the increased mortality in RLS was due to an underlying cause of RLS, co-occurring conditions, or to consequences of RLS.
There are many natural treatments for RLS to reduce or eliminate symptoms:
• increase magnesium and potassium foods or supplements
• increase iron foods or supplements – if your iron is low
• increase folic acid (B10) and B complex
• homeopathic remedies like Hylands “Restful Legs”
• herbs to increase circulation such as Ginkgo, Horse Chestnut and Butcher’s Broom
• massage and stretch the leg muscles
• alternate hot and cold baths or compresses
• hot bath with Epsom salts (rich in magnesium)
• avoid alcoholic and caffeinated (coffee, tea, cola) drinks in the evening
• stop smoking
• drink plenty of water
Successful treating of RLS may or may not reduce your risk of death, but it will improve your sleep. And that alone will make a world of difference to your health.
For more information on this or other natural health topics, stop in and talk to Stan; for medical advice consult your licensed health practitioner.