Hey, you. When is the last time you had your feet checked or paid them any attention? Your feet are vital parts of your body that, when properly taken care of, can help with holistic health.

Your feet are essential for walking, it’s the way us bipedal creatures get from one place to the next. The feet and lower extremities are the basis for all human locomotion. When our smooth motion is inhibited by deformity, disease or injury it takes a toll on our general health. Maybe you remember a time you might have been injured and had to be on rest, immobilized or bed bound in order to heal. Well, during that time of incapacitation you also might have noticed you general well being declined. You physically deconditioned, you might have gained a few extra unwanted pounds and your mood may have not been as rosy as it usually is. This is because with motion being such a huge part of human life, we depend on healthy free functioning lower extremity to help us to burn calories and to keep our muscles toned. Some of the largest muscle groups found in the human body are contained within the lower extremity, namely our glutes, hamstrings, and calfs. With muscle being so metabolically active, the more toned you get with exercise the easier it is for muscle burn calories that otherwise would be stored as fat.

Secondly, the alignment of the joints in your feet matter and affect the alignment of the other joints in your knees, hips, and spine. Having feet that are misaligned from deformities such a flat feet or high arch feet is analogous to driving your car around with unbalanced and unrotated tires. In a car if you continue to drive for thousands of miles with tires that either toe in or toe out too much, it will eventually cause problems with the rest of the car. You may find yourself spending money on brand new tires much sooner due to uneven wear, the shocks and alignment of the chasis will become damaged, and your fuel/oil economy will suffer. Analogous to feet if you continue to run or walk around on feet that or flat or feet that have high arches or other deformities you may find yourself dealing with constant repetitive injuries such as tendonitis, tendon ruptures ankle or foot sprains, and stress fractures. If these issues go on unchecked for long enough the joints in your feet, ankles, knees, hips, and spine will take a beating ending in the painful contention called arthritis. Treatment of arthritis pain most commonly results in surgical procedures to fuse together painful joint or replace the joint with artificial implants in attempt to retain normal or near normal motion.

Lastly, your feet are essential to your mood and mental health. If you have you ever gone for a run or enjoyed a nice walk on a perfect spring day, you know that your feet are essential for you to be able to enjoy such things. When the human body performs exercise or exposed to fresh air and sun light our bodies release endorphins, or feel good hormones. Feet that suffer from deformity or neglect are subject to cause chronic pain or disability which takes you away from the simple activities that give life meaning and bring you enjoyment. It’s hard to be happy and keep a positive outlook on life with chronic pain.

In closing, cherish and care for your feet as you would the rest of your body and they will see you through a life time of amazing moments.