Muscle stiffness can occur when the muscle has been uncommonly used, more intensely than usual. This stiffness and pain, called soreness, vanish with time, at the same pace as muscles recover from the effort.
- Adrien Gagnon
However, muscle soreness can be a symptom of other health conditions such as fibromyalgia or flu. The present document discusses muscle soreness due to unusual efforts. See the corresponding health conditions if muscle soreness is a symptom of another disease for a more complete survey of alternative treatments.
Symptoms: SORE MUSCLES – MUSCLE PAIN – DIFFICULT MUSCLE CONTRACTION
Muscle soreness can be the result of nutritional deficiencies. Having a varied and balanced diet made of fresh produces is a simple but effective way of avoiding many health issues including sore muscles. Ensure you have an adequate intake in minerals such as magnesium and potassium. Magnesium can be found in avocados, whole grain cereals, cantaloupe, roasted soybeans, dark chocolate, Brazil nuts, etc. Potassium can be found in potatoes (not peeled), beans (white kidney bean, soybean or Lima bean), garlic, bananas, whole grain cereals, molasses, etc.
Drink plenty of water to prevent muscle damage. Active muscles require a great amount of water; otherwise they will not be able to optimally perform
Warm up and stretching exercises can help avoid muscle cramps following an exercise period. They allow for a better muscle oxygenation. Since most muscle cramps are due to the practice of a sport, preparing muscles before the activity will be an effective measure to prevent cramps or wounds. Crampsoccurring at night or in the morning are most often associated with mineral deficiencies, especially magnesium. A supplement can help reach the daily required intake in magnesium.
Of note, stretching exercises should be practiced on a regular schedule. Even physically less active people will find benefits, and lots of muscle annoyances can be avoided this way.
The more the muscles are flexible, the more we avoid muscle problems, including cramps and soreness. With age, muscles tend to lose their flexibility; hence the importance of stretching exercises.
To ease a sore muscle, apply heat or warmth on the affected muscle, as you wish. Without exaggerating, move the muscle in order to accelerate recovery. You will feel the pain gradually reduce as the muscle warms up. A gentle massage can also help manage sore muscles.