Top 7 Foods on the Restless Leg Syndrome Diet

Restless Leg Syndrome Diet

Restless Leg Syndrome DietAlthough there is no definitive restless leg syndrome diet, there are known foods that can help combat RLS as well as foods that can trigger RLS symptoms. These are the best foods you should be including in your diet in order to fight restless leg syndrome.

They contain the highest concentrations of the vitamins and minerals your body is likely lacking in from experiencing chronic restless leg syndrome. Here they are in no particular order:

1. Fish Oil  Restless Leg Syndrome Diet
Why: Omega 3 – A study examining whether omega-3 exerts neuroprotective action in Parkinson’s disease found that it did, using an experimental model, exhibit a protective effect (much like it did for Alzheimer’s disease as well)1.

 

Restless Leg Syndrome Diet 2. Organic Chicken & Turkey (3 oz. serving)
Why: Niacin (Vitamin B3) –
Vitamin B3 is a naturally occurring substance found in meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and green vegetables. Deficiencies in Niacin can lead to restlessness and depression. Tryptophan, abundant in turkey and chicken is a known precursor to Serotonin.

3. Eggs Restless Leg Syndrome Diet
Why:
Folic acid/B12 – Here’s the big connection with RLS. Studies indicate that people suffering with RLS have low ferritin iron storage protein levels within the brain2. If the ferritin iron storage protein level is below 50 mcg/L, dopamine production decreases in the body. Folic acid is known to increase ferritin iron protein levels within the brain, thereby naturally aiding dopamine transport and a decrease in RLS symptoms.

Restless Leg Syndrome Diet 4. Almonds
Why: Vitamin E – Want a healthy snack that will satisfy you and help prevent RLS at the same time? Almonds are rich in vitamin E as well as magnesium, both are among the top 7 foods to include in an RLS diet. Vitamin E provides a crucial protective barrier around delicate nerve cells called the myelin sheath, so that delicate communication between these nerve cells can happen normally. Eat raw almonds for optimum nutrition.

5. Kiwi and StrawberriesRestless Leg Syndrome Diet
Why: Ascorbate (Vitamin C) – A recent study done in 2012 found that an increase in Ascorbate led to increased activity of the iron transporter ferroportin3. This was a great find because RLS sufferers have been found to have decreased iron transporter protein (ferroportin) activity. Ascorbate assists the body in naturally boosting ferroportin activity allowing for Iron to be metabolized more effectively.

restless leg syndrome diet 6. Bananas
Why: Magnesium – A medium sized banana provides 32 mg of magnesium and also contains a large dose of potassium, both which are electrolytes that help the regular functioning of nerve impulses. Magnesium is also powerful for helping to bind and remove toxins that may be clogging dopamine receptor sites within the body.

7. Decaf Green Tea  restless legs syndrome diet
Why: Theanine – Theanine is a very useful amino acid that has been known to increase dopamine receptor activity, serotonin and GABA levels within the brain and can immediately induce a state of relaxation and elevated mood.

Although this list explores the ideal diet for restless leg syndrome, by no means is it comprehensive. If you would like a more comprehensive list of what foods to eat and what foods to avoid on a restless leg syndrome diet, you can download our free eBook, “Solving the RLS Puzzle,” which goes more into depth on the types of foods that cause RLS as well as environmental factors that could be contributing to your restless legs. See the top of this page for how to get your free copy as an instant download today.

 

 

REFERENCES:

1. Omega-3 deficiency and neurodegeneration in the substantia nigra: involvement of increased nitric oxide production and reduced BDNF expression. Cardoso HD1, dos Santos Junior EF1, de Santana DF1, Gonçalves-Pimentel http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24361617

2. Profile of altered brain iron acquisition in restless legs syndrome
James R. Connor,corresponding author Padmavathi Ponnuru, Xin-Sheng Wang, Stephanie M. Patton, Richard P. Allen and Christopher J. Earley http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3069701/

3. Iron transport through ferroportin is induced by intracellular ascorbate and involves IRP2 and HIF2α. Scheers N1, Sandberg AS2. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24394537

RLS During Pregnancy

RLS During Pregnancy

RLS During PregnancyWe know so many mothers who began their RLS symptoms during their pregnancy, and many, that was when their nightmare had just begun. Often, symptoms will subside after childbirth, however, there are those mothers whose long journey of RLS began with their pregnancy.

Why is there such a correlation with pregnancy and RLS? There are a few theories, however, the one that stands out for many experts, including us, is that pregnant women often aren’t getting enough nutrition which usually leaves the mother getting depleted in certain vitamins/minerals.

One of the most important vitamins for pregnant women is folate. A developing fetus requires a huge amount of folate and if the mother isn’t supplementing with enough, she will be depleted by her fetus.

If you remember, folate is one of our 6 most important elements for ending RLS due to the critical job it folate for RLSplays in increasing ferritin iron protein levels in the body. Essentially, folate is largely responsible for assisting iron to cross the blood brain barrier where it can be properly utilized for dopamine production.

When this happens, in conjunction with the other factors mentioned, the body can display RLS symptoms in those predisposed to the condition. You see, not everyone will experience RLS because of low folate levels or malfunctioning dopamine receptors, just those who are predisposed to it.

The good news is that most women who develop RLS during pregnancy will only experience it for a few months, usually during the last 3 months, and will disappear after childbirth or within that same month. For women who already had RLS, it often gets worse during pregnancy.

What to do if you’re experiencing RLS during pregnancy:

– Supplement with folic acid, magnesium malate and probiotics
– Avoid the foods that trigger RLS symptoms
– Begin incorporating the 7 RLS fighting foods in your diet
– Avoid taking sleeping pills (OTC or prescription)
– Avoid most RLS approved drugs if you are pregnant
– Download our free eBook which outlines an action plan you can follow

Hopefully you’ve learned how important folate and magnesium malate is in the fight against RLS and why this condition is so prevalent during pregnancy for so many women.

What Causes RLS? Restless Leg Syndrome and the Dopamine Connection

What causes RLS

What Causes RLSDid you know that there is a crucial link between dopamine and restless leg syndrome? Most experts are now in agreement on this. I can almost hear you saying, “But what exactly does that mean? And please don’t confuse me with fancy medical terms.” There have been so many new discoveries just in the past couple of years on what causes RLS. Let’s dive into these latest findings.

To put it as direct as possible, experts are finding that people suffering from RLS have issues not with the amount of dopamine being produced, but with their dopamine receptors functioning properly. So no matter how much dopamine the body produces, it’s just not being utilized.

What Causes RLS

Dopamine and RLS

Dopamine is known as the “feel good chemical,” and is responsible for critical tasks such as combating   stress, relaxing the nerves, ensuring proper movement of the limbs, maintaining memory and restful sleep. So, you can see why it’s critical for RLS issues.

When the body is producing more dopamine (or you are taking dopamine enhancing drugs) and the receptors aren’t receiving it properly, a build-up of dopamine happens in the brain, causing nervous tics and, yes – you guessed it – RLS.

So, getting the body to produce more dopamine is not really the answer. It’s getting the body to ‘metabolize’ the dopamine so that it can get to where it needs to go in order to do its job. The next question then becomes, why is this dopamine not being properly metabolized in the body of RLS sufferers?

We then have to look at how iron plays a role in all of this. Iron is required for the healthy functioning of dopamine receptors. More specifically, brain iron is required for these receptors to communicate properly. If there is a lack of brain iron, it doesn’t matter how many neurotransmitters are being produced, there just isn’t going to be proper functioning of these receptors.

However, it’s important to note that just taking more iron isn’t going to solve the problem. In fact, it could end up causing RLS symptoms to flare up even more.

A majority of the recent studies being done on what causes RLS have found that an overwhelming number of people suffering from RLS have low ferritin iron storage protein levels in the brain1. It’s here, in the substantia nigra that iron is able to be utilized to assist in dopamine neurotransmitter activity.

Probiotics, such as the ones being used in Seratame for restless legs, are one of the keys to aiding the body in being able to utilize iron more effectively.

In the next part of our “Puzzle” series, we will be looking at why iron and probiotics are the next crucial pieces to the dopamine receptor issue. Although experts are still putting together the clues for what causes RLS, there is now more than enough evidence pointing to the dopamine connection that they now know they are going in the right direction. For more info on this and other tips on uprooting restless leg syndrome, have a look at our latest articles or download our free ebook.

 

 

REFERENCES:

1. Restless legs syndrome and low brain iron levels in patients with haemochromatosis J Haba-Rubio, L Staner, C Petiau, G Erb, T Schunck, J P Macher http://jnnp.bmj.com/content/76/7/1009.full