Restless Legs Cured Without Drugs!

Dr. Frank Shallenberger, MD

September 14, 2020



You’ve probably seen plenty of ads on TV lately for new drugs that treat restless leg syndrome. These drugs are very expensive. And what do you get for your money?

These drugs are great at treating the symptoms of restless leg. But they don’t treat the cause. And there are causes.

Restless leg symptoms are not due to a deficiency of a drug. They are due to an imbalance in the body. Several studies done as long as 35 years ago have pointed this out. Find and correct the imbalance and the symptoms go away.

And besides, why take an expensive drug to treat symptoms when there’s a cure that costs much less?

That’s exactly what I asked a patient of mine that I saw a few years ago. His name is Mike.

Mike is a 54-year-old man who first came to the clinic in September 2009. He came complaining of pain in the right shoulder and elbow. He also had carpal tunnel syndrome in both wrists. And to top it off, he had developed restless leg syndrome. These symptoms bothered him all day, but were particularly bad at night. So bad that they interrupted his sleep.

His doctors had recommended surgery for the shoulder and the carpal tunnel symptoms. They also prescribed Ambien and Trazedone to help him sleep. But he was not interested in surgery. And the drugs still didn’t give him the rest he needed.

To make matters worse, Mike is a plumbing and heating contractor, and the elbow and shoulder pain were getting in the way of his ability to do his job.

The Cure for All of His Joint Pains

Over the next three months, I gave Mike four Prolozone® treatments to his shoulder, elbow, and carpal tunnel. I have discussed Prolozone therapy in the past. It is an absolutely remarkable natural therapy that uses the power of oxygen to get rid of pain.

But it doesn’t just treat the pain; it heals the conditions that cause it. So I was not surprised at all that the Prolozone treatments cured Mike’s aching body parts. But that’s not what this article is about.

Today, I want to show you how I cured his restless leg syndrome. And I didn’t use Prolozone to do so. To cure his restless legs, Mike needed a special nutrient to correct an imbalance his genetics caused.

And the only way I knew about that imbalance was from an article that appeared way back in 1976 in the Canadian Medical Journal. The article was entitled, “Neurologic disorders responsive to folic acid therapy.”

Can a Nutrient Cure Restless Legs?

In the article, the researchers looked at six women between the ages of 31 and 70. Three of them had developed a folic acid deficiency. One of them was folic acid deficient after using birth control pills. Doctors know birth control pills cause folic acid deficiency.

But doctors don’t always tell their patients to take the nutrient. The second patient developed the deficiency as a result of being on a vegan diet. Vegan diets commonly result in low folic acid levels. The third one had malabsorption from a bad case of irritable bowel.

All three suffered from restless leg syndrome. And the researchers cured all three with a three to six-month treatment of high-dose (10-60 mg per day) folic acid therapy. The other three were different.

Their folic acid deficiency wasn’t due to a medication, malabsorption, or a deficient diet. Their deficiency came from a genetic need for more folic acid than their diets could supply.

I’ve seen a similar problem with vitamin B6. In one case, certain patients had a genetic need for much more B6 than their diet alone could supply. These patients developed a version of McArdle’s disease. And this disease prevented them from sustaining any exercise unless they took large doses of B6.

These types of genetic variations explain why so many patients feel better when they take certain vitamin supplements. The doctors and the nutritionists out there who still maintain that everyone gets all the nutrients they need from a healthy diet need to wake up and smell the coffee. These cases prove otherwise.

In these three genetic cases, there was no obvious folic acid deficiency. In fact, their blood folic acid levels were normal. The problem was that normal levels were not enough for them. Because of their genetic need, only very high doses (30-60 mg per day) for up to six months allowed them to have normal folic acid function.

In other words, the cause of restless leg syndrome could be due to a folic acid deficiency that doesn’t look like a deficiency.

So How Common Is This Genetic Need for Folic Acid?

Very common! It depends on the medical journal you read. But I’ve seen estimates that up to half of all humans have a genetic defect known as MTHFR gene polymorphism. This defect interferes with the body’s ability to convert folic acid (which is inactive in the body) into the activated form (folinic acid).

In some cases, such as Mike’s, this defect can lead to restless leg syndrome. If you have this problem, you may have normal folic acid levels, but your body can’t easily activate the folic acid in your diet (or your vitamin supplement) into the form you need. In that case, you have two options.

One is to take very high doses of folic acid, as was done with the patients in the study. This will often drive the body to convert the folic acid even in the face of the defect as long as the defect is not too severe. The other is to take a supplement that contains folinic acid.

Recent research has shown that folinic acid may be the optimal form of supplementing folic acid. It bypasses the metabolic steps. And it’s much more metabolically active than regular folic acid. Many vitamin preparations, particularly those for pregnant moms, now contain folinic acid.

I gave Mike a prescription for a product called Metanx. Metanx contains a form of folic acid known as l-methyl folic acid. This form is even more activated than folinic acid. I believe it is the most active form of folic acid available. Each tablet contains 3 mg of l-methyl folic acid, along with activated forms of vitamin B6 and vitamin B12 for extra measure.

I had Mike take two tablets of Metanx a day. Within three months, his restless leg symptoms were completely gone.

At that point I reduced the dose to one tablet a day. Several years later, it was still doing the job.

While a folic acid deficiency is one cause of restless leg syndrome, it’s not the only cause. Other documented causes are imbalances of iron, vitamin B12, niacin (vitamin B3), vitamin E, tryptophan, melatonin, and ribose. Whatever the cause, just remember one thing. God made your body to heal itself. All we have to do is help the process along.

And drugs, as effective as they can be for symptoms, can never do this. In Mike’s case, the drugs were masking the fact that he had a serious imbalance in his system that needed some attention. But they also were creating their own brand-new imbalance. That’s why you always should try to find the natural answers to your health problems before you resort to drugs.


Botez, M.I., M. Cadotte, R. Beaulieu, L. P. Pichette, and C. Pison. “Neurologic disorders responsive to folic acid therapy.” Can Med Assoc J. 1976 August 7; 115(3): 217-223.

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