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What are heat cramps and what should I do to prevent them?

Heat cramps are involuntary muscle spasms that can occur during or following physical exertion, which generally result from an electrolyte imbalance due to excessive loss of salts. Direct pressure, massage, and simple stretching of the cramped muscle should help alleviate the cramp. This is the first sign of heat illness and is a signal to drink more water and/or reduce the amount of intensity of physical exertion.


Stephen D. Ball, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Nutritional Sciences, College of Human Environmental Sciences, University of Missouri Extension







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