You might not think about your feet often, but they take a lot of punishment. From running and jumping to heels and dress shoes, the feet take a lot of stress throughout your life.
The feet are the base of your body and provide indicators of common problems like anaemia, diabetes and nutritional deficiency long before the rest of the body. Look down once in a while and listen to what your feet have to say!
The way that you treat your feet is also a great indicator of your commitment to health and well-being overall: if you’re willing to neglect their needs then you’re not being health-conscious.
Obesity and Pressure
Obesity is one of the most common nutritional and lifestyle problems and can be influenced by poor diet and exercise habits.
Your feet are going to feel the addition of the extra weight – additional bodyweight is going to increase the impact on all the joints of the lower body. Eating a diet that contributes to a healthy weight and reduces the risk of injury to connective tissues and ankles.
This is all about eating filling, nutrient-dense, calorie-sparse foods. These are the hallmark of a healthy diet and include:
- Dark Leafy Greens
- Broccoli and other Cruciferous vegetables
- Lettuce, Cucumber and other super-low calorie foods
Type-2 diabetes is a common health problem associated with the quality of your diet and bodyweight. Diabetes presents rapidly in the extremities and can be a serious problem if left unchecked.
It is not uncommon for diabetes sufferers to experience loss of sensation in the limbs, with serious circulation issues and occasional amputations being necessary.
High-fiber foods contribute to the regulation of insulin and a sustainable release of energy, some of the best include:
- Spinach, kale, chard and other dark, leafy greens
- Nuts and Seeds
- Beans and Legumes
Circulation is one way in which the feet are at-risk and keeping them healthy might require you to improve the flow of blood and nutrients to the area. A lack of blood to the area is common and presents as pain or tingling.
Many pro-circulator foods come in the form of herbs or spices. Great examples include cinnamon, ginger, garlic and turmeric (curcumin).
Fish Oil: Joints
Eating fish oil is essential for all the joints in the body. It is an excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acids (primarily the long-chain DHA) which are prized for their ability to improve joint health and reduce inflammation.
This effect is important to ensure that the many small bones and joints of the feet are well-nourished and avoid excessive inflammation. This is a common experience for anyone that works on their feet or competes in endurance of combat sports.
The feet are an under-loved part of the body, but wild-caught salmon is great source of this essential fat and will contribute to healthier feet.
Vitamin C and Gelatin
This is a combination that many people haven’t heard of, despite the scientific research suggesting that it has huge benefits for connective tissue health.
The combination of gelatin (an animal-based protein) and Vitamin C together has been shown to improve the recovery of tendons and ligaments. These are important because the sole of the foot is made up almost entirely of connective tissue, which can become inflamed.
This condition, known as plantar fasciitis, can be incredibly painful and stubborn, requiring extreme interventions like shots and surgery. Irritation and inflammation to the thick bands of connective tissue on the foot are less likely to cause health problems if you consume this odd combination of protein and vitamin.
It might not be your regular foodstuff, but it will make a big difference to the health of your feet, especially if you use them for rigorous exercise!
Huperzine and Choline
These two compounds are important for the health of the nervous system – something that is overlooked in foot health.
The nervous system at the extremities (the hands and feet) is more susceptible to damage and decay than the spine. Keeping your nervous system healthy and happy – such as through the consumption of these two nutrients – is a good way to prevent this degeneration.
What foods contain these key nerve-protecting ingredients? The most potent food is liver, but choline can also be found in milk, eggs, legumes, and nuts!
Deficiency in the important nutrients of Iron and vitamin B can result in a burning sensation in the feet, associated with anaemia, which means it’s important to incorporate ingredients rich in these nutrients into your diet, such as red kidney beans or red meats.
Iron deficiency is incredibly common in many countries, with anaemia being the obvious and severe result. Foods like kidney beans and turmeric are great choices for plant-based diets, but everyone needs to ensure that these essential vitamins and minerals are a staple in their diet.
Nutritional deficiency is going to negatively effect the whole body, but this particular form of deficiency is particularly painful and uncomfortable in the feet, making walking and everyday activities a challenge!
Author Bio: Amanda Roberts is a professional blogger and a podiatry student. She is an enthusiast who loves to write on several niches, particularly in foot health, including plantar fasciitis, foot massage and reflexology. Read more about her blog posts on foot health at Feet Remedies.