This guest post featuring tips for eating right for the health of your feet has been shared in partnership with Rehabcenters.com. All opinions are of the author.
Good foot health is vital because all 26 bones and 33 joints in them form the foundation for the rest of your body. If you have a problem with your feet, it radiates upwards impacting other areas of your body, like your knees, hips, and back. It can seriously impact attempts at activity and fitness. Therefore, it is important to give your feet the attention they deserve, and the diet they need.
Osteoporosis is a disease that causes progressive bone loss; it literally translates to “porous bone.” It is commonly associated with an increased risk of bone fractures. Often osteoporosis develops without symptoms or discomfort until the fracturing begins. What does this have to do with foot health? One of the first places fractures begin is in the feet. By eating properly, you can prevent or slow the progress of osteoporosis and protect your feet from fractures.
It’s vital that you get enough calcium starting at a young age because inadequate calcium intake while you are developing can contribute to the development of osteoporosis as you age. Calcium is critical because it is used to build strong bones.
And, calcium continues to be important as you age. Regardless of your age or health status, calcium intake matters. Every day, your body needs calcium, and as we age, the amount of calcium we take in from food decreases. This causes the body to begin taking calcium from your bones in order to aid in cell function. It is this aging process that contributes to osteoporosis and potential foot fractures.
In order to absorb all of the calcium that you need, you must have adequate vitamin D intake. This vitamin assists your intestine in absorbing calcium. It can increase absorption by as much as two to four times.
If your feet are dealing with inflammation, it may be the result of certain foods that are increasing the level of the chemicals that lead to inflammation. In some cases, this can manifest as plantar fasciitis, a condition that leads to pain in the tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot or in your heel.
So, you need to be mindful of inflammatory foods, like:
- Saturated fat, especially those in red meat
- Refined grains
- Refined sugar
- Trans fats
- Omega-6 fats (often found in oils)
- Fried foods
- Synthetic sweeteners
- Artificial additives
It’s also possible to suffer from inflammation caused by chronic food allergies, like wheat, or by foods that cause your blood sugar level to spike quickly. Changing your diet helps reduce the inflammation that leads to foot pain and problems.
Your feet may also be affected by diabetes and peripheral artery disease. Both cause foot issues because they damage the arteries that carry blood to your lower extremities. Eating properly can reduce your risk of developing either of them.
Experts claim your risk of peripheral artery disease can be reduced if you eat a diet low in trans fat, saturated fat, and sodium. Your diet should also be high in omega-3s, fruits, and vegetables.
People with diabetes also benefit from a healthy diet because it protects their feet from complications associated with the disease. So, a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, beans, whole grains, and lean meats is recommended. People with diabetes also need to limit their intake of sweets and fats.
Your feet are critical to fitness and overall health, It is important that you keep them healthy. A nutritionally balanced, healthy diet is a great way to do that. Whether you are coping with existing problems or trying to prevent them, changing the way you eat will enable your feet to serve you well.
Shelley Lawrence is a freelance writer, nurse, and nutrition hobbyist. She is committed to the improvement of overall health through improvements in diet. Through changes in her own diet, she was able to control her diabetes and she no longer needs medication. She also blogs about other informative topics such as parenting, marriage, divorce, addiction and free rehab centers.