10 Ways to Reduce Symptoms of Restless Legs Syndrome

Restless Legs Syndrome afflicts up to 10% of America's population. It's a neurologic disorder that can result in sleep deprivation, anxiety, and even depression. Get-Fit Guy has 10 easy tips for reducing your RLS symptoms so you can get back to sleep.

Ben Greenfield
5-minute read
Episode #160

Lately, I’ve been getting into Bikram yoga. In case you’re not familiar with this style of yoga, allow me to explain: it involves about 90 minutes of intense sweating in a room at about 100-110o as you move your body through a series of exercises. Perhaps I’m not used to that amount of fluid and electrolyte loss, or perhaps I’m simply using new muscles I haven’t used before, but last night, several hours after a particularly rigorous Bikram session, I abruptly woke to horrible cramps in both my hamstrings and calves..

For what seemed like forever, I writhed in discomfort and clenched my teeth as I tried to relax and massage away the cramps on both legs. Finally, I alleviated the cramps, got out of bed, and drank an enormous glass of water and sea salt. The next morning, I was still sore from the spasms.

Believe it or not, some people (perhaps even you!) deal with these types of frustrating and extremely uncomfortable cramps, spasms, and twitches nearly every night. They are often seized by an uncontrollable urge to move their legs, their legs actually twitch or jerk, and they experience the sensation of something squirming or wiggling under their skin. This is called Restless Legs Syndrome, RLS, and it can result in sleep deprivation, anxiety, and even depression.

So in this episode you’re going to learn my 10 quick and dirty tips to help lessen the symptoms of RLS.

What Is Restless Legs Syndrome?

Restless Legs Syndrome is a neurological disorder that affects as many as 12 million people in America alone! The restless symptoms usually strike when you’re lying in bed at night, but in more serious cases, can also flare up in the daytime, such as when you’re sitting for a long period of time. Often, you experience a feeling of tingling, aching, itching, or tugging deep beneath the skin of your lower legs - and sometimes even in the thighs, feet, hands, and arms too.  

Medical research still indicates that this is a condition shrouded in mystery – and it seems to be accompanied by lots of other co-factors, such as heart, lung, and kidney disorders, circulatory problems, arthritis, dietary deficiencies (such as magnesium) or dietary excesses (such as caffeine).

The following 10 Quick and Dirty Tips are designed to help you combat the problem of Restless Legs Syndrome and nighttime (or daytime) leg cramps.....


All content here is for informational purposes only. This content does not replace the professional judgment of your own health provider. Please consult a licensed health professional for all individual questions and issues.

About the Author

Ben Greenfield

Ben Greenfield received bachelor’s and master’s degrees from University of Idaho in sports science and exercise physiology; personal training and strength and conditioning certifications from the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA); a sports nutrition certification from the International Society of Sports Nutrition (ISSN), an advanced bicycle fitting certification from Serotta. He has over 11 years’ experience in coaching professional, collegiate, and recreational athletes from all sports, and as helped hundreds of clients achieve weight loss and fitness success.