According to medical professionals, in fact, more that 25 percent of all obese people have diabetes, whether they know it or not.
Much lesser known, however, is the fact that foot complications are extremely prevalent in individuals with diabetes. If you happen to be diabetic yourself, practicing proper foot health is extremely important.
If you’re an obese person who hasn’t been diagnosed as diabetic, there are a number of actions you can take right now to keep your feet healthy and in good shape. Caring for your feet regularly may even help you discover the beginning of a potential problem before it gets worse.
Regularly Checking and Caring for Your Feet
If you’ve ever wondered why people who suffer from diabetes are also at high risk for various foot issues and complications, there’s actually a fairly simple explanation. Diabetes, especially when it’s not being properly treated, can lead to serious cases of nerve damage in the extremities, especially the legs and feet.
Because the nerve damage condition suffered by diabetics leads to losses in pain sensation, many people with this issue don’t notice dangerous issues until it’s too late. If they can’t feel the pain of a wound, in other words, they may not know it’s there.
Unfortunately, nerve damage also causes poor circulation, which doesn’t allow the body to self-heal as quickly as it otherwise would. Nerve damage also makes infection much more likely, because it leads to the body having a harder time fighting bacteria.
All of which is to say that diabetics, or anyone who thinks they may be at risk of developing the disease, should take especially good care of their feet on a daily basis. Wearing diabetic footwear, especially diabetic socks, AFO liner socks and compression socks developed specially for people who suffer from these issues is probably the best place to start when it comes to proper foot care.
The Importance of Dry Feet
You should also check your feet daily, preferably with a mirror, for cracks, sores, areas of discoloration, or cuts or bruises you haven’t noticed. Again, any nerve damage you may be suffering from could keep you from feeling pain if you’ve somehow damaged your feet.
That’s why diabetics are also advised to stay out of hot tubs and steer clear of extremely hot baths or showers—it may not be possible to tell if the skin on your feet or legs is being scalded.
You’ll also want to do your best to regularly keep your feet dry. That’s because bacteria are naturally attracted to dark, wet places on the body, and feet that are wet—from either sweat or water—make for ideal candidates where bacteria is concerned. An overabundance of bacteria on the feet can lead to infections, which can be dangerous for diabetics.
To keep your feet dry, always towel off thoroughly after showering, especially between the toes. If your feet are naturally sweaty, try using baby powder. And while it’s generally fine to use moisturizer on your feet if they’re often dry and cracked, take care not to moisturize the area between your toes. If your socks or shoes become wet, either from sweat or water, do your best to remove them as soon as possible.
Why Maintaining Your Body Weight Can Reduce Your Chance of Developing Diabetes
If you’re interested, there is a scientific reason obese people are so prone to developing diabetes. This may be a bit of an over-simplification, but essentially, the individual cells that make up your body will be forced to work much harder than they’re normally expected to if you’re overweight. The heavier you are, the more stress you’re placing on each of those cells.
Your cells have a response to this stress: They cause your body’s insulin receptors to malfunction. Once that happens, unnaturally high levels of sugar glucose will begin circulating throughout your body. That’s definitely not a good thing. It’s also why more than 80 percent of people who suffer from diabetes are also overweight.
If you’re overweight and feel you may be at risk of developing diabetes, you will, of course, want to exercise more (after first consulting your physician) while significantly lowering your consumption of junk food and other processed foods. In particular, you’ll want to keep your sugar intake as low as possible. Lowering your carbohydrate intake is also a good idea, because both sugar and carbs cause high levels of insulin to be released.
The Highest Quality Diabetic Socks on the Market
No matter what you plan to do to battle your diabetes—or to lower your chances of developing it in the first place—owning a few pairs of the highest quality diabetic footwear on the market is a very wise place to begin.
Take a look at the wide range of diabetic footwear sold by Creative Care, and take a look at the company’s “Frequently Asked Questions” page and “Resources” page while you’re there. With Creative Care’s diabetic footwear, you’re only steps away from a diabetic’s best defense against foot issues.