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Potassium supplements

Am sick and tired of persistant night-time leg cramps, and leg muscle fatigue when running. I've mentioned it to the doc and he's swapped me from Seretide to Fostair - this has had no effect. He didn't want to check my blood levels coz he said they were ok at the start of the year (interestingly the symptoms started march/april time, AFTER the last blood test)

So anyway I'm thinking of investigating for myself and trying Potassium supplements to see if it helps. I just wondered if anyone has used OTC Potassium supplements? Is there any I should try/avoid?

I have tried eating bananas etc but I've eaten soo many I can't stomach them anymore, plus they never seemed to help anyway.

Any advice gratefully recieved!!

9 Replies


Will be glad to read the replies as have megga cramps and have to get out of bed

take more pain killers and end up sitting on end of bed for ages before it passes xxx



I suffered from terrible leg cramps (funky chicken dancing) in the middle of the night due to my asthma medication.

After re-searching, it was a choice of potassium supplements or quinine sulphate tablets. I saw my GP and she started me on 200mg Quinine Sulphate daily. Within a week the leg cramps were away.

No more jumping out of bed in the middle of the night doing my funky chicken dance. Bliss!!

Hope this helps



Magnesium, 10 mgm tablet, give me almost immediate relief from leg cramps. I now take it on a daily basis, to prevent that sudden and severe pain from waking me in the night.


Interested in the answers too. Have cramps randomly day & night in mainly hands and feet. Potassium level fine on blood test so wondering would quinine help more? Thanks Neil, may have to check that out.


Silly question then, how do you know if your quinine levels are too low? Does a blood test show it? If not, maybe this could be my problem also seen as last blood results were ok


Im on Tramadol reduction,

Been on 300mg for years due to OA but with co cadamol on top of Tramadol.

I reduced 50mg Friday night and taking co cadamols for the cramps and my Tramadol now is down to

50mg a night .so in a weeks time when the withdrawals ease up I will be taking my last Tramadol .

Its been a really hard journey coming down from them with nasty side effects but will still need pain relief for my OA and cramps but hope just take co cads as needed and not have to take Tramadol daily as really addictive and been on them 10 years and one hell of a drug to come off xxx


Just a word of warning that high potassium levels can be dangerous too, so I would recommend a chat with your doctor before you take potassium supplements. My local respiratory doctors referred me to a dietitian for a high potassium diet - you could maybe look it up online and give that a try?

Another thing that can cause restless legs is iron deficiency. Your GP would be able to do iron studies (a blood test) to check that.

I find that my joints and muscles seize up if I'm dehydrated or have overdone things during the previous day. Painkillers help me in that 'middle of the night panic' but I then know to drink more water and rest more the next day!


After finding that bananas weren't doing the trick, for RLS relief, I discovered that an 11 oz. can of Low Sodium V-8 juice (original flavor), with its 1188 mgm of potassium, worked wonders. And it works very quickly. This is 34% of your daily recommended intake of potassium, so you could even drink 2 cans (which gives you 4 servings of a variety of veggies) and it would not be excessive.

For those whose stomachs are sensitive to the acid in the veggies, a slice of bread or toast with butter or olive oil, eaten just before the juice, can have a buffering effect. I'm fortunate in that I really LIKE this juice. And since it has given me such relief from RLS, I like it even more. My general health also has improved since I began adding these veggie servings to my diet.


I find that a 10 mgm tablet of magnesium stops my leg and foot cramps within a few minutes. Now, I take the supplement every day.


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