Believe it or not, what you eat does affect your feet. At Great Neck Family Foot Care, we believe in a total body approach to podiatric health. Here are some dietary do’s and don’ts that can lead to greater foot and ankle health.
Do: eat foods rich in calcium and Vitamin D. Osteoporosis, sometimes known as a “silent disease,” is weak, brittle bones that fracture easily. It can affect your feet before other parts of your body because the bones of the feet bear the weight and stress of carrying your entire body. Making sure you get enough calcium in your diet can help prevent osteoporosis. Food high in calcium include: milk and other dairy products, dark leafy greens, such as kale, broccoli rabe, bok choy and collard greens, sardines, salmon, oranges and figs.
Don’t: make processed foods, sugary sweets and foods with artificial sweeteners a large part of your diet, particularly if you have issues with inflammation. Plantar fasciitis, arthritis, Sever’s Disease and many other foot and ankle conditions have inflammation as a major symptom. These foods are known to increase inflammation.
Don’t: feast on foods high in purines—a compound that breaks down into uric acid and causes gout, which most commonly affects your big toe. Purines are found in large quantities in red meat, organ meats, seafood, rich sauces, red wine and beer.
Do: eat a healthy diet that is high in protein and low in sugar and fats. This will help you avoid diabetes, cancer, and many other illnesses that affect your feet as well as the rest of your body. A healthy diet will also help you avoid excess weight which is a factor that makes many foot disorders worse.
Of course, eating nutritious foods is just one of many ways to maintain good foot (and overall) health. Regular podiatric checkups with one of our board certified podiatrists, Dr. Alec Hochstein or Dr. Diana Gagliano is another important factor in maintaining foot health. If you haven’t seen the foot doctor in a while or have other questions regarding the health of your feet, contact our Great Neck office and schedule an appointment. House visits are available for patients who find it difficult to get into the office.