Your feet have the incredible job of carrying your entire body. With 26 bones, 33 joints and over 100 muscles, tendons and ligaments, there’s a lot to take care of. Believe it or not, the food and nutrients you take into your body play an important role in how well your feet are able to operate. At Edmond Norman Foot & Ankle, our board certified foot and ankle surgeon, Dr. A. Bil Buksh wants patients to be informed care partners so we are offering the following information about foods that can increase foot health:
- Fruits and Vegetables—you will inevitably increase the health of your feet (and the rest of your body) if you increase the amount of fruits and vegetables in your diet. First, they will help you maintain a healthy body weight—particularly if you choose them over sweets and high-fat foods. Avoiding obesity decreases the number and severity of foot ailments you are prone to. Also, certain fruits and vegetables can help fight inflammation and increase bone strength (see below).
- Dairy Products—milk, yogurt, cheese, cottage cheese, all help increase the amount of calcium your body receives which in turn increases bone strength and can help prevent debilitating conditions, such as osteoporosis and stress fractures. If you are not a fan of dairy, certain leafy greens such as kale, broccoli and bok choy also contain significant amounts of calcium.
- Omega 3 Fatty Acids—salmon, sardines, herring, tuna, flax seed, walnut oil and soybeans are all excellent sources of Omega 3’s which can greatly help decrease inflammation experienced with conditions like plantar fasciitis, tendonitis and arthritis.
- Antioxidants—these have numerous benefits. The ones found in green tea, for example, can help slow cartilage destruction and decrease inflammation. Antioxidants have also been shown to help reduce incidence of cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Other foods high in antioxidants include: leafy greens, whole grains and orange fruits and vegetables like mangoes, carrots and pumpkin.