Drs. Oz and Roizen: The lowdown on high heels
In 2009, 1,300 stilt walkers led by members of Cirque du Soleil claimed the world's record for the most people perched high atop wooden poles at the same time. They must have missed lunch hour on Fifth Avenue, when thousands of New York women teeter down the sidewalk in 4- to 6-inch stilettos.
And where are they going? To the podiatrist -- in record numbers. Calluses, corns, ingrown toenails and hammertoes all result from cramming feet into steeply arched, unpadded shoes that force the foot forward. This also can irritate nerves on the ball of the foot, triggering neuromas. But, according to the American Podiatric Medical Association, despite the discomfort (or downright agony), many women continue to wear painful shoes. Unfortunately, once the feet go, so does physical activity, and guess what's right behind (or about to be on your behind)? Weight gain. So take the proper steps now:
--If you wear heels over 2 inches high, save them for posing (at that office party), not walking around. And travel with flats.
--In love with toe-pinchers? Buy them a half or full size larger than usual; add heel liners to take pressure off the toes.
--Look for shoes with open toes so your little guys can stretch and breathe.
--And if you have tingling or pain in the balls of your feet, your arches ache or you have lower-back pain, go to a foot doc for an assessment and a shoe store for a pair of well-padded, good fitting walking shoes.
Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Medical Officer at the Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute. For more information go to www.RealAge.com.