Foot Issues and Weight Loss

March 09, 2017 Posted by Mallory Snow

70 Million Americans are obese. Unfortunately, obesity aggravates foot problems, such as, heel pain and flat feet. To make matters worse, sore feet makes it harder for someone to exercise and lose weight. If a person is unable to exercise, obesity can worsen and can increase the progression of diabetes, heart disease, and other serious health threats and conditions.

Don’t let that stop you from losing weight! Foot and/or ankle pain should not stop a patient from exercising, but it is important to take the first step. Seek evaluation and treatment by a foot and ankle surgeon for any chronic, activity limiting foot and ankle problems, so you can stay compliant with any physician-directed exercise programs.

If you are moderately to severely overweight, a physical exam is mandatory and necessary prior to beginning an exercise program. Once you have been cleared to exercise, be sure you don’t try too much too soon. It is important that you ramp up your routine gradually so your body is able to adjust appropriately to the stress of consistent physical activity. If you are overweight, you should avoid high impact machines like treadmills to help minimize stress and pounding on joints.

If you are experiencing foot pain, it is important to remember that many causes can be relieved non-surgically. Stretching exercises, orthotics, and good athletic socks can all help alleviate foot pain. If you have a bunion, heal pain, or another condition that requires surgery, you can still be able to participate in exercise during recovery. Non-weightbearing exercises like riding a stationary bike, swimming, or weight training can all be done during this time.

If you have diabetes, shedding the excess weight can help you control your disease. You can still exercise, even if you have experienced a foot ulceration or vascular problem caused by diabetes. However, if you have diabetes, make sure you are receiving regular foot exams to check for sore spots and assess nerve sensation. Proper foot care and footwear can help you follow a safe and appropriate exercise regimen.

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