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Herbs for Restless Legs
Restless legs syndrome (RLS) which is also known as “Willis-Ekbom’s” disease is a type of neurological disorder that is often characterized by a highly irresistible urge to move a person’s body so as to stop any odd or uncomfortable sensations.
The condition mostly affects the leg but can also affect the head, torso, arms and even other phantom limbs.
RLS is usually accompanied by other unpleasant sensations that can only be described as aching, tingling, twitching and needle-like. Depending on the severity of the medical condition that is very common in females, most patients may find it almost impossible to sleep at night.
Although the cause of Restless legs syndrome has not been clearly understood, most health practitioners often associate it with iron deficiency among other common conditions like pregnancy, obesity, and diabetes.
Some conventional pharmaceutical drugs used to treat Restless leg syndrome, including nerve sedatives, analgesics, muscle relaxants, and central nervous system depressants have varying degrees of success and may result in various side effects like muscle weakness and fatigue when used.
Herbs For Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) Herbal Remedies
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This article is going to educate you on some of the common restless legs herbal remedies that can be used to effectively alleviate either the medical condition itself or its symptoms. We hope to show you how to stop restless leg syndrome naturally.
Kindly note that the natural herbal remedies may not work right away, but will eventually succeed in alleviating the poorly understood medical condition. So read on to discover the best herbal treatment for restless leg syndrome.
The Astragalus herb which is also known as “milk vetch” has been widely used in Chinese herbal medicine to assist in iron absorption from digested food and boosting blood circulation. Astragalus has also long been considered to be an effective overall body tonic that can balance the immune system.
The herb’s amazing effects on iron absorption make it ideal for treating Restless legs syndrome as the condition is mostly associated with iron deficiency in a great percentage of sufferers.
Apart from effectively alleviating RLS, the Astragalus natural restless legs herbal remedy can also be used for a variety of other medical conditions, including infections, cardiac disorder, diabetes, cancer among other inflammatory conditions. Individuals under blood thinner medications like “warfarin” are advised not to take the herbal remedy as it may result in serious negative side effects.
Butcher’s Broom whose scientific name is “Ruscus aculeatus” is an evergreen bush found in the lily family. The natural herb got its name from Europe as its dried branches were widely used as brooms throughout the continent.
Butcher’s Broom as become a popular homeopathic treatment for Restless legs syndrome among other conditions that primarily affect blood circulation. The natural herb thus works by improving blood viscosity and circulation.
Ruscus aculeatus contains a beneficial phytochemical simply known as “ruscogenin” which has the ability to inhibit the enzyme “elastin” and also helps in stabilizing blood vessels. Apart from alleviating RLS, Butcher’s Broom or sweet broom can be used to treat swollen legs, varicose veins, and hemorrhoids.
According to the “University of Maryland Medical Center1,” this natural restless legs herbal remedy has been used for more than 200 years as an effective relaxant. American Skullcap, which is also commonly referred to as the “mad Dog” herb is available in the form of herbal supplements, tinctures or teas.
The natural herb can be used to deal with any form of discomfort or restlessness that is experienced during sleep. Herbal users should be careful not to confuse American Skullcap with Chinese Skullcap.
Although somewhat similar Chinese Skullcap is beneficial for various conditions, but can also affect the cardiac system. To notice considerable improvements in RLS symptoms consume between two to six cups of the herbal tea or take two capsules extracts daily.
The natural sedative and antispasmodic herb may promote menstruation hence should not be taken by children, individuals suffering from hormonal disorders or pregnant women.
Horse Chestnut which is a native American tree that grows up to a height of approximately 80 feet is an important remedy for RLS. Although the tree’s leaves, bark, and fruit are beneficial the seed extracts from Horse Chestnut are the commonly used for improving blood flow and overall vein tone making the natural herb an effective RLS treatment.
Just like other common natural herbs that are used for treating the medical condition, Horse Chestnut can also be used to alleviate other vein-related medical conditions like hemorrhoids.
Herbal users are advised to only consume the herb’s commercially prepared extracts as its raw, unprocessed leaves, fruits, and seeds may be highly toxic. Pregnant women, children all people suffering from kidney disorders should avoid Horse Chestnut at all costs.
Passionflower whose scientific name is “Passiflora incarnate” is very effective in alleviating the burning sensation experienced when one has RLS.
The beautiful herb which is also a member of the Passifloraceae family works to bring about significant elevation in the level of a potent inhibitory brain neurotransmitter called “Gamma amino butyric acid.”
Passionflower provides a relaxing effect not only on the affected nerves but also on body muscles making it an ideal homeopathic remedy for alleviating the medical condition. Apart from inducing mild sedation and relaxation, passionflower health benefits also minimizes both the duration and frequency of disturbances that interfere with the patient’s sleep patterns.
Users are advised to consume at least one cup of PassionFlower tea an hour before going to bed to ensure both pain alleviation and undisturbed sleep throughout the night. Pregnant women or people under antidepressant medications are instructed to stay away from the natural restless legs herbal remedy.
Valerian Root which is a common natural herb for managing restless legs syndrome is also an effective sleep aid and natural sedative. It is important to note that the natural herb does not actually work by treating the disorder but only makes it less disruptive.
Valerian root’s value is not in alleviating RLS entirely, although there is a great deal of evidence that the homeopathic remedy may significantly reduce leg twitching.
Contrary to this the herbal remedy helps users to sleep. A scientific study2 that was conducted by the “University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing” to measure the severity of RLS and sleep disturbance rate of 37 patients revealed that those who took valerian root instead of placebo reported a considerable decrease in both RLS symptoms and sleep disorders.
This successful study and others, thus indicate that the natural herb can be a useful supplement in combating RLS symptoms.
Fava Beans, although not very popular are a potentially effective herbal solution for improving Restless legs syndrome. Most of the scientific studies carried out have attributed dopamine levels to causing RLS. Although it is not entirely clear on what basically affects dopamine levels the symptoms of the medical condition appear to transform over the same cycle as dopamine.
This is why most of the available dopamine agonists have been proven to effectively relieve the medical condition.
Fava beans are very rich in L-Dopa which is a unique component responsible for creating dopamine in the brain, making them a standard natural treatment for both Parkinson’s disease and Restless legs syndrome. Although there have not been any conclusive studies on the herb’s effectiveness in alleviating RLS the link between the two is undeniable meaning that fava bean and its extracts can potentially relieve symptoms of RLS.
As discussed above Restless legs syndrome is best alleviated using natural herbs as compared to the use of conventional pharmaceutical medications. However, various herbs react differently with various people, hence the assistance of a medical practitioner or an herbal expert is required when deciding to use any homeopathic remedy.