Acclimatization and Heat Cramps
Heat acclimatization has been reported to have no effect on the development of heat cramps, and it has been suggested that they occur more often in acclimatized, highly trained athletes. However, these reports cite no verifying evidence and they do not agree with the following observations made in field and industrial settings:
Very few cases of heat cramps were observed among soldiers during many years of heat illness triage in Israel incidence and Indiaincidence.
Twenty-six laboratory tests on one subject of exercise-heat exposure during negative salt balance supported improved resistance to heat cramps after heat acclimatization.
The incidence of heat cramps was greatest during the first few days of a heat wave at the Boulder Dam Construction site in Nevada, in the early s.
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Steel workers, who work in hot indoor factories, were maximally susceptible to heat cramps during the first few days of an outdoor heat wave that occurred in midsummer in Youngstown, Ohio.
A tennis player, who had been suffering from painful heat cramps for months, found permanent relief after consuming more NaCl in his food and fluid-electrolyte beverages.
These observations support the concept that heat acclimatization enhanced physical fitness, and the body’s hormone-mediated conservation of sodium all serve to reduce the incidence of heat cramps.
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