Did you know that a significant number of foot and ankle conditions are caused or made worse by being overweight? Plantar fasciitis, arthritis, flatfeet, tendonitis and stress fractures all have excess weight as a risk factor. In addition, carrying more pounds than you should can affect your knees, hips and back which can then lead to secondary foot problems due to changes in your gait to compensate for pain in these other parts of your body. Lastly, overweight patients are more likely to develop high blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes—all of which pose serious medical threat to your feet (not to mention the rest of your body). March is National Nutrition Month and here at Superior Foot & Ankle Care Center we would like to offer these tips to improve your diet and attain or maintain a healthy weight:
- Let’s eat in—cooking meals at home puts you at a nutritional advantage. You can control the ingredients and calories in the dishes you prepare. Good food doesn’t have to be complicated. Learn some simple dishes and up the flavor quotient with herbs, spices and citrus fruits instead of fats and creamy sauces. Choose broiling or grilling over frying as your cooking method.
- Portions matter—how much you eat is almost as important as what you eat. Ask your doctor what amount of calories you should be consuming everyday to maintain a healthy weight. Check the serving sizes in the nutrition facts for the foods you eat and adjust to your daily intake if necessary. Try using a smaller plate to automatically scale back on portions.
- Variety is the spice of life—mix up your menus. Be sure to include a colorful array of different fruits and vegetables each week. By doing so, you’ll go a long way toward ensuring that you are getting all the different nutrients you need. Explore food from different cultures.
- Add some action—try to be physically active for some part of every day. This doesn’t mean you have to go to the gym or play on a team. Take the stairs, pull weeds, walk while you talk on the phone in your office—just get moving. This will help burn calories and increase fitness. Exercise can also help fight heart and other disease.
Our podiatrists, Dr. Victoria Foley and Dr. Constance Omelas, believe in a total body approach to good health. If you have questions about your weight and your feet or are experiencing pain or discomfort in your feet currently, contact our Long Beach office for an appointment.