Foot problems often manifest around the holiday, in particular Thansgiving. The question becomes why? Is it stress? Diet? It could be all of the above, with a dash of danger thrown in for good measure. In particular, with Thanksgiving people ultimately think of food first and foremost- the holiday is nearly synonymous with food, despite being a time to cherish the good in your life. With the copious consumption of food comes danger, often due to the KIND of food being consumed. Fatty, rich foods high in sugar & fat are the culprits behind some startling foot problems associated with food: (1) obesity, (2) diabetes, and (3) gout.
Obesity is not just an aesthetic issue; it is a contributing cause of musculoskeletal health problems, specifically with the feet and ankles. Many people experience weight gain prior to the onset of foot and ankle pain. People carry approximately four to six times their body weight across the ankle joint when climbing up stairs or walking steep inclines. Obesity may significantly increase the impact Foot and ankle problems can be linked to an individual’s weight and body mass index (BMI). Individuals who have a high BMI (> 25 kg/m2) tend to have more foot and ankle problems, see a physician more often for foot and ankle problems, and have more foot and ankle surgery than those who have a lower BMI (< 25 kg/m2). . Increased BMI has also been found to increase foot pressures with standing and walking, and is a precursor to foot and ankle pain.
Patients with diabetes have most certainly counseled on what they can and cannot eat. However, many diabetic patients present to my office with elevated blood sugar levels. Most of the time, they think that they are following their diet pretty well because they are not eating obvious high-sugar foods such as cakes, cookies, and donuts. What many patients do not realize is that foods such as bread, fruit, coffee or tea (sweetened with sugar) also elevate the sugar levels in the blood, leading to diabetic complications. In the foot, it is seen as numbness, or peripheral neuropathy, which can eventually lead to foot ulcerations, infections, and amputations.
All of the foods below can be responsible for excessive uric acid production. Even though some do not contain purines, they can still cause the system to naturally produce uric acid. They are as follows: alcohol, anchovies, asparagus, cauliflower, mushrooms, consommé, herring, meat gravies, broth, bouillon, mussels, sardines, red meats, organ meats, processed meats (hot dogs, lunch meats, etc.), fried foods, roasted nuts, any food cooked in oil, rich foods (cakes, sugar products, white flour products), dark greens vegetables, dried fruits, fish, caffeine, beans, lentils, eggs, oatmeal, peas, poultry, yeast products.
Did you eat any of the foods listed above on Thanksgiving? Did you eat more than one of them? Did you overeat any of them?
While under a Gout Attack all of the above foods should be completely avoided as well as the following foods which are acid-forming: artificial sweeteners, carbonated soft drinks, fizzy drinks, white or wheat flour, goat, lamb, pastries & cakes from white flour, pork, sugar, beer, brown sugar, deer, chocolate, coffee, custard with white sugar, jams, jellies, hard liquor, pasta, rabbit, refined & iodized table salt, black tea, turkey, white or wheat bread, white rice, commercial vinegar.
So…before you over-indulge during your next holiday celebration, think about your body and your feet!