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On Your Feet

Filed Under: Personal Care at 12:15 pm | By: Susan Coyle, Senior Editor
Tennis ShoesDiabetes, exercise and heart disease – they go together. If you have the first but do the second, you’ll lessen the likelihood of the third. We already knew that, having remained up to date on current research. But thanks to Japanese scientists, we now have a few more specifics. The cardiovascular aspect of a diabetic’s workout does not have to entail a gym and fancy machinery. It can be as simple as a daily 20 to 30 minute walk. The brisk activity is enough to reduce the risk of heart disease, in comparison to those who do not exercise. So get on your feet, but before you do, make sure that they are healthy enough to support you.

Diabetes patients are prone to foot problems. The disease can cause nerve damage, making the sufferer unaware of pain, cold or heat as it occurs. The skin often dries to the point that the extremity is overwhelmed by rough, cracked patches, and calluses as well as ulcers are more common than in healthy individuals. Moreover, poor circulation robs the foot of its ability to heal and fight infections. When patients take steps to cure conditions, they often cause more complications because of the nerve damage, unaware when they are overdoing a treatment method. It can escalate to the point that amputation is necessary.

Therefore, proper foot care is vital.The best way to do this is to maintain strict attention. Wash your feet daily, drying them completely afterwards. Then examine them for calluses, blisters, cuts, dry patches and sores. Corns and calluses can be filed down with pumice stones, while lotion should be applied to dry skin, unless the area is between the toes. When you’ve determined that all is well, put on a pair of socks and shoes, but make sure the latter fits correctly. Only 17 percent of diabetes patients where shoes that fit properly when sitting and standing. This can aggravate foot conditions, worsening your situation. Measure your feet to determine your true size. Then, go for a walk.

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