By: Terry Graedon September 3, 2017 7 Comments
    How Does Pickle Juice Make Muscle Cramps Disappe…

    As football teams gear up for practice, coaches around the country are stocking up on pickle juice. Why? Tradition has it that a gulp or two of pickle juice makes muscle cramps disappear. Now we have …

    By: Joe Graedon May 4, 2017 192 Comments
    How Much Tonic Water Must You Drink to Ease Leg …

    People took quinine pills for decades to prevent leg cramps. Quinine comes from the bark of the cinchona tree in South America. The dose was substantial--200 to 300 mg. Researchers have described the …

    By: Terry Graedon December 26, 2016 14 Comments
    Will Magnesium Prevent Horrible Muscle Cramps?

    Are you taking a medication that could be leaching magnesium out of your body? Prescribers don't always think to warn people of that possible side effect. When magnesium drops too low, the consequence…

    By: Joe Graedon November 21, 2016 10 Comments
    Why Do So Many Physicians Pooh-Pooh Home Remedie…

    A physician once told us that he had been chastised by a medical colleague for sharing something perceived as implausible. The skeptic was reported to have said: "I wouldn't believe it even if it were…

    By: Joe Graedon October 10, 2016 11 Comments
    Should Doctors Embrace Home Remedies?

    Scientists often dismiss home remedies as bogus because there is no explanation for how they might work. Doctors like drugs because the pharmaceutical companies often have plausible explanations for t…

    By: Joe Graedon October 3, 2016 19 Comments
    Mustard For Cramps Has Amazing Scientific Explan…

    We have been writing about strong flavors for combatting muscle cramps for more than 30 years. Initially, we were told that the quinine in tonic water was the best strategy for overcoming these painul…

    By: Terry Graedon September 26, 2016 10 Comments
    How to Stop Hand Cramps with a Bar of Soap

    Have you ever suffered from cramps in the muscles of your hand? In addition to hurting like the dickens, such a cramp can make it nearly impossible to use your hand until the muscle contraction is rel…

    By: Terry Graedon April 4, 2016 4 Comments
    How to Prevent Foot Cramps with Lavender Oil

    Some people are impervious to cramps that curl the toes or punish the arch of the foot. But many more suffer from these muscle spasms. They can happen at any time, but foot cramps are especially disru…

    By: Terry Graedon December 14, 2015 4 Comments
    Surprise: Milk of Magnesia on the Soles of the F…

    We are constantly amazed at the home remedies people think up using just a few common household products. Vicks VapoRub is one such versatile product that seems to help heal everything from paper cuts…

    By: Joe Graedon October 5, 2015 12 Comments
    Holding a Bar of Soap to Banish Hand Cramps

    Almost everyone is familiar with a charley horse, a cramp in the calf muscles. Cramps in large muscles of the calves or thighs are not uncommon, especially during or after vigorous exercise. Cramps i…

    By: Joe Graedon October 4, 2015 13 Comments
    Drinking Tonic Water Prevents Nighttime Leg Cram…

    Nighttime leg cramps that awaken a person from a sound sleep with sudden debilitating pain are common as well as supremely uncomfortable. Worse, doctors do not have much in their medical kit to offer …

    By: Joe Graedon May 29, 2014 38 Comments
    Skeptics Become Bed Soap Believers To Overcome L…

    If you have ever been awakened in the middle of the night with a cramp in your calf or the arch of your foot, you know how much that can disrupt your sleep. But what can you do to prevent this proble…

    By: Joe Graedon March 10, 2014 58 Comments
    Home Remedies for Hand Cramps: Soap Stories to t…

    When most people think of muscle cramps what comes to mind are leg cramps. That's because a "Charlie horse" can be super painful. The muscles in your legs are long and strong and when those muscles co…

    By: Joe Graedon February 20, 2014 14 Comments
    Lavender Soap Under Sheet Solved Leg Cramp Probl…

    Q. I've heard of soap for leg cramps before but sounded more like an urban myth.  Lately I have been having  cramps at least several times a night. This has been going on for months. I tried potassi…

    By: Terry Graedon May 13, 2013 13 Comments
    Did Low-Sodium Diet Trigger Leg Cramps?

    Q. I happened across a study showing that low-sodium diets don't offer benefits to people who aren't otherwise at risk for heart disease. I realized that I've been religiously following a low sodium …

    By: Joe Graedon April 18, 2013 35 Comments
    The Best Soap Story Ever!

    We do not know why so many health professionals are offended by home remedies in general and soap in particular. The idea that putting a bar of soap under the bottom sheet of the bed to combat leg cra…

    By: Terry Graedon March 17, 2013 8 Comments
    Glycerin Gives Leg Cramps the Slip

    Q. I suffer with severe cramps in my toes and legs when I am in bed. Soap under the sheet made no difference, but a friend suggested glycerin instead. I found a bottle at Walmart, and it is the best $…

    By: Terry Graedon May 28, 2012 22 Comments
    Doctor Embraces Old Wives’ Tale

    We sometimes hear from doctors who are disappointed that we write about home remedies. They feel the only topics worthy of discussion are treatments that have been discussed in weighty medical journal…

    By: Terry Graedon December 5, 2011 19 Comments
    Soap in Socks Saves Feet from Cramps

    When patients suffer leg cramps that wake them up at night doctors have nothing in their black bag to offer. Long ago doctors used to prescribe quinine and many patients found it quite helpful. Ever s…

    By: Joe Graedon November 21, 2011 0 Comments
    Home Remedies for Holiday Hazards

    Coughs & Colds: As much as we look forward to Christmas and New Years, this time of year can be fraught with unexpected hazards. For one thing, there is the traveling to gather with family and fri…

    By: Terry Graedon March 23, 2011 45 Comments
    Simple Remedy Eases Hand Cramps

    Q. I have horrible hand cramps, even when I am not gripping anything. Is there a home remedy I can try? A. Many readers have found that soap is helpful against muscle cramps. Some keep a bar under the…

    By: Terry Graedon October 25, 2010 26 Comments
    Pickle Juice to the Rescue

    Q. I experienced leg cramps that started in my toes and went up almost to my diaphragm. I tried sublingual homeopathic tablets without success. My son, a handball player, told me the professional hand…

    By: Terry Graedon June 20, 2010 47 Comments
    Science Proves Pickle Juice Remedy Works

    Q. I would like to tell you about a remedy for leg cramps or spasms. One evening we were playing cards with some friends, and suddenly my husband bent over with a severe leg cramp. Our host went to th…

    By: Joe Graedon February 18, 2008 20 Comments
    Bar Soap For Hand Cramps

    Q. I have horrible hand cramps which can occur at almost any time. Nothing my doctor has prescribed has helped. Is there a home remedy I can try? A. You may laugh at this suggestion. There is absolute…

    By: Joe Graedon February 4, 2008 40 Comments
    Yellow Mustard Eases Leg Cramps

    Q. We tried a treatment from your column for nighttime leg cramps. My husband used to get them frequently and would have to walk them off while in pain. He read that taking mustard would alleviate the…

    By: Terry Graedon August 3, 2007 97 Comments
    Zetia May Cause Muscle Problems

    With so many drugs now available to lower cholesterol, people naturally would like to know about the benefits and risks of each. We have written quite a bit about the side effects of statins such as a…

    By: Terry Graedon August 1, 2007 17 Comments
    Leg Cramps May Signal Celiac Disease

    Q. I have been diagnosed with celiac disease.  One of the early symptoms was leg and foot cramps, often screamers, early in the morning. The tonic water was by my bed at all times, just in case, as i…