Q:Grandma, every time I do some light physical activity I experience calf cramps. Is this normal? I am afraid that I have an underlying health problem. What remedies do you suggest?
A: Dear R, Leg cramps are common at night and with age. It disturbs your deep slumber and rest. Unfortunately, idiopathic leg cramps just happen without really any any underlying cause. One theory postulates that it can be caused by the shortening of the calf muscle in a certain sleeping position that stimulates it to contract. With further contraction, this can go into a spasm or cramp. In certain cases, however, calf cramps may have a secondary cause like an underlying condition like diabetes or peripheral artery disease. It can also be due to excessive stress on the muscle after an athletic activity or if muscles are warm and have been sweating profusely. Regardless of causes, it is important to stop the pain right there and then. Yet, it is important to know if there are secondary causes; so, consult a doctor.
EFFECTIVE HOME REMEDIES FOR CALF CRAMPS
1. Mustard – A packet of mustard is good dose for night leg cramps. This is about the right amount that you can take to relieve your horrible pain. So, leave some of these packets on the nightstand that you can easily reach when the calf cramps attack. Swallow the mustard quickly; you should get fast relief and go back to your interrupted sleep. 
2. Baking Soda – Mix ¼ teaspoon of baking soda in a glass of water and drink it after doing strenuous exercise or sport to prevent leg cramps. This counteracts the lactic acid that is formed in the muscle during rapid use of energy.
3. Pinching the Trigger Points – Some swear to the effectiveness of relieve leg cramps by pinching their upper lip. This is the point halfway between the top of the lip and the nose. This is called as the Chinese trigger point. Squeeze this pint for about thirty seconds.
4. Tubful of Warm Water – Sit in a tub of warm water to ease the pain of the calf cramps. This can relax the muscles to stop the pain of a contracted calf.
5. Bananas and Potatoes – If your leg cramps is due to low electrolyte level caused by excessive sweating, you can eat these fruits that are packed with potassium. Low potassium levels can cause leg cramps because you need those electrolytes along with sodium to keep the steady contraction and relaxation of muscles.
6. Glass of Warm Milk – Before bedtime, it helps to take a glass of warm milk because of its calcium content, which is another kind of electrolyte.
7. Chamomile Tea – Drinking of about five cups of chamomile tea during the day for two consecutive weeks can help you relieve the cramping of your calf muscles at night. Chamomile has relaxing effects and can relieve muscle spasms and.
8. Massaging with Essential Oils like Lavender and Rosemary – Home remedies for calf cramps can include massaging the calves using essential oils like lavender oil or rosemary oil to relax the muscles. Wrap the area in a warm towel after the massage for the best results.
9. Take a walk – During a cramp, standing up, putting weight on the leg and walking a bit stretch the muscle in the natural direction in which the muscle is meant to go. You can also flex the foot with the toe pointing upwards. 
10. Apply Heat – Applying heat compress or take a hot bath to relax the muscle. This is good after getting rid of the spasm.
11. Take a Lick of Salt – Salt can help replenish low levels of electrolytes in your body. This remedy is quite popular because salt is readily available in any home.