Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) is a neurological disorder which causes an awkward sensation in the legs along with an uncontrollable desire to move the limbs for relief. This uncomfortable sensation usually occurs in the legs and feet, but can also be present on the arms and elsewhere on the body. Most sufferers of Restless Legs Syndrome describe the sensation as a ‘creepy crawly sensation’, a tingling type, or as if pins and needles are being pricked into the affected part of the body. There may also be numbness which gives the sufferer a strong urge to move the limb or the affected part of the body.
The exact cause of Restless Legs Syndrome is still not fully understood however genetics play a link, magnesium and iron deficiencies have been implicated, certain drugs may be responsible for RLS, and some concerns such as diabetes increase the incidences of Restless Legs Syndrome.
I normally tend to recommend a good circulatory supplement such as Diosmin Plus. This supplement contains powerful circulatory herbs and extracts such as Gotu Kola, Ginger and Horse Chestnut to enhance the flow of blood in the entire body including the lower limbs. This helps to oxygenate all the tissues providing them with vital nutrients such as magnesium to ensure healthy muscle and nerve function. Do not take Diosmin Plus with blood thinning medications such as warfarin and heparin.
Since Restless Legs Syndrome is a neurological disorder, and magnesium deficiencies are implicated, it is vital for sufferers to use Pure Magnesium Oil Spray or Cramp Bark Leg Spray. Magnesium is involved in over 300 biochemical reactions within our bodies including energy enhancement, synthesis of the sex hormones and for pain relief. It is estimated that a wide spectrum of the adult population is magnesium deficient. With specific reference to nerve function, magnesium works in tandem with calcium to ensure optimal nerve impulse transmission and any deficiency in magnesium results in muscle spasms, twitches or tremors, as well as the symptoms experienced with RLS. Using a topical form of magnesium restores deficiencies quickly and safely as well as helping to alleviate the uncomfortable sensations when sprayed onto the limbs.
Vitamin B-12 deficiency is reaching epidemic proportions in the adult population and it is estimated that nearly half the adult population may be deficient in this nutrient. Vitamin B-12 is needed for the manufacture of the sheath which covers and protects the nerves cells enhancing the conduction of nerve impulses. The neurological implications of vitamin B-12 deficiency are vast and range from numbness and tingling such as that experienced by RLS sufferers right through to degenerative nerve diseases. Since vitamin B-12 by way of an oral tablet passing through the stomach will not restore deficiencies significantly due to the lack of a specific protein called intrinsic factor, it is important to supplement this vitamin by the sublingual route and I would recommend the use of Methyl B-12 by Jarrow Formula’s, suck one lozenge daily.
Researchers at the John Hopkins Sleep Disorders Centre found that 40% of people suffering from anaemia had Restless Legs Syndrome and about 20% of pregnant women had RLS suggesting iron deficiency may play a role in Restless Legs Syndrome. It is thought that iron deficiency in the brain cells causes the misfiring of nerve signals leading to the symptoms. I am not a great advocate of taking iron on an ongoing basis because it is one of the hardest minerals to metabolise and puts a great burden on the liver. If you suspect that you have anaemia, the symptoms of which include feelings of being out of breath, pale skin, fatigue and weakness, then do visit your GP to confirm that iron deficiency does exist and if supplementation is necessary then take Globifer Forte, a gentle non-constipating iron supplement. Also increase your dietary intake of iron rich foods such as broccoli, sprouts, rocket and liver.