How Nutrition Can Affect Your Feet

People typically associate nutrition with heart health or weight management. Yet, nutrition can also play a role in the development and treatment of foot conditions.

You can improve your foot health by following these nutritional tips!


Gout, rheumatoid arthritis, and psoriatic arthritis are common types of arthritis that may cause inflammation in the feet. Inflammation can also strike the plantar fascia, a thick band of tissue in the foot. A plantar fascia that is overstretched gets microscopic tears known as plantar fasciitis.

According to the Arthritis Foundation, these foods encourage inflammation:

  • Sugar, refined carbohydrates, and trans fats, like those in baked goods and processed snack foods.
  • Saturated fats, like red meat, full-fat dairy products, and pasta dishes.
  • Omega-6 fatty acids, such as those found in corn, safflower, sunflower, grapeseed, soy, peanut, and vegetable oils.

Nutrition to Reduce Inflammation

To reduce inflammation, limit the foods above.

Consume a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables. Have more omega-3 fatty acids too by eating fatty fish like salmon or taking fish oil supplements.


The American Diabetes Association shared that people with diabetes can have several foot problems. Nerve damage called neuropathy can cause tingling, pain, weakness, or even a loss of feeling in the foot. Even if you injured yourself, you may not it.

About 20% to 30% of people diagnosed with peripheral artery disease (PAD) also have diabetes. PAD is when a sticky plaque of cholesterol and fats buildup along artery walls, causing them to narrow. This can slow down or stop blood flow to your feet.

Nutrition and Diabetes

A healthy diet is essential to controlling blood sugar levels. The Diabetes Plate Method is an easy solution!

  1. Choose a plate; it’s recommended to have one that’s 9-inches across.
  2. Fill half with non-starchy vegetables such as carrots, mushrooms, and green beans.
  3. Fill one-quarter with lean protein. Lean protein foods include chicken, turkey, and lean beef and pork. Plant-based options include beans, tofu, and plant-based meat substitutes.
  4. Fill one-quarter with carbohydrate foods. Think of fruit, dairy products, and whole grains like oats, polenta, and quinoa.
  5. Lastly, choose water or a low-calorie beverage to drink. This could be flavored water, sparkling water, or unsweetened coffee or tea.


Osteoporosis is a disease that causes bones to become weak and thin. Some people actually don’t know they have osteoporosis until their bone because so weak it breaks.

These foot fractures come with difficulty in walking or bearing weight, bruising, and swelling.

Nutrition for Osteoporosis

Decrease the risk of a fracture by taking calcium and vitamin D! Calcium and vitamin D are sometimes added to fortified foods such as cereal, bread, and juice.

You can also get calcium from dairy products like cheese, milk, and yogurt, and some leafy greens like broccoli, collard greens, kale, and okra.

Meanwhile, the best sources of vitamin D are fatty fish and fish liver oils. Consider salmon, sardines, swordfish, and tuna.

Consult a Podiatrist at The Foot & Ankle Center

The podiatrists at The Foot & Ankle Center have the ability to pinpoint the source of your pain and recommend treatment. If you’re experiencing pain in your foot or ankle, have a consult with one of our knowledgeable doctors. Request an appointment online or call us at (314) 487-9300 to get started!