Natural Foot Care
Often forgotten...

natural foot care

Natural Foot Care Q & A

How many steps does the average adult take a day?

4000 to 6000 steps a day, your feet carry you the equivalent
of five times round the earth in an average lifetime.

What % of the adult population has a foot problem?

Between 75% and 80% of the adult population have some form of foot problem.

How many working days are lost to back pain each year by women?

There are 44 million working days lost each year and women having approximately four times as many foot problems as men; a contributing factor is the wearing of high heel shoes.

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Do you know that over the course of your lifetime you will walk over 250,000 miles?

It's no wonder your feet ache.

The solution? A natural foot care bath.

A few other interesting foot facts--

* The average foot gets TWO sizes longer when you stand up.

* High heels can increase the load on the ball of your foot by 75%.

* Foot problems occur in women four times more than in men.

* The average foot expands in size as the day goes on.

Easy to see how you can end up with aching feet.

Natural Foot Care Soak for Aching Feet

A natural foot care bath begins with a White Foot Basin deep enough to allow both your feet to fit comfortably. Make sure it's deep enough to cover your ankles. Before soaking, wash your feet with pure castile soap. Once you're feet are clean, add water and a few drops of essential oils such as peppermint or lavender to the basin. You can also add epsom salt. Watch a movie or read a book while soaking, and remember to keep a towel close by for when you're finished.

After the natural foot care soak, towel dry and try a massage oil with arnica which is good for relieving aches and pains.

natural foot care

Which part of the body has more sweat glands per square inch than anywhere else?

Your feet have 250,000, to be exact and the average pair gives off about half a pint of perspiration per day.

Foot Odor

If you have stinky feet, you know who you are...

To combat foot odor, try this wonderful natural foot care soak:

Pour two quarts of hot water into foot bowl and add a half cup of Bragg's Organic Apple Cider Vinegar and 10 drops of tea tree essential oil and mix thoroughly. Soak feet in this solution for 15-30 minutes, and allow to dry in air for at least 5 minutes.

So what causes foot odor?

Basically, bacteria will build up due to excessive sweating and feed off dead skin cells. The result is stinky foot odor. Try to buy shoes that breathe. The air needs to circulate to avoid excessive sweating. Change your socks often if you notice your feet sweating a lot.

Another great natural foot care solution is to soak your feet in tea. The tannins in tea are a great drying agent.

To overcome smelly shoes, make mixture of 3 tbs ground dried sage leaves and 3 tbs of baking soda. Sprinkle 1 tbs of mixture into shoes at night, shake around entire inside of shoes and leave overnight. Wear shoes the following day with mixture still inside, and remove and replace with fresh mixture nightly.

Athlete's Foot

Athlete's Foot (Tinea pedis) is a form of ringworm associated with highly contagious yeast-fungi colonies, although they look like bacteria. Foot bacteria overgrowth produces a harmless pungent odor,(see foot odor above). However, uncontrolled proliferation of yeast-fungi produces small vesicles, fissures, scaling, with eroded areas between the toes and the plantar surface of the foot, resulting in intense itching, blisters, and cracking.

Keeping the feet clean and dry with the toenails trimmed reduces the incidence of athlete's foot. Wearing sandals in locker and shower rooms prevents intimate contact with the infecting organisms and alleviates most foot-sensitive infections. Enclosing feet in socks and shoes generates a moisture-rich environment that stimulates overgrowth of both aerobic bacteria and infectious yeast-fungi.

Preventing Athlete's Foot

Wash you feet daily.

Ensure you wash between your toes and under your nails. Use a nail brush for scrubbing toenails.

Dry your feet thoroughly, in particular between your toes. When drying yourself ensure you start from your head to your feet as this will keep the infection from spreading to other body parts. Tip: If you use a hair dryer to dry you hair, also use it to dry your feet and in between toes!

Change your socks regularly. Clean breathable, absorbent socks made with cotton will keep your feet dry.

Use Cornstarch Foot Powder to ensure the moisture from you feet is absorbed thus keeping your feet dry.

Keep your shoes dry and well ventilated will stop the fungus from growing. Try also rotating foot wear to allow each pair of shoes to get ventilated and dry out.

Curing Athlete's Foot

Athletes is caused by a fungus called Trichophyton. The key to getting rid of athlete foot is to stop the fungus growth and to prevent further infection.

To do this use tea tree oil which is well known for its anti-fungal properties.

1. Get a bowl and place roughly 6 drops of tea tree oil in it.
2. Add warm water and soak your feet for 15 minutes each night before going to bed.
3. When finished, ensure you dry your feet thoroughly.
4. Wash your hands and put the towel directly into laundry, as it is possible to spread athletes foot to your groin, arm pits and even your face.
5. Continue this for around two weeks and your itchy feet should be totally free of fungi.

To get rid of any lingering odor or fungal spores make up this simple foot powder and leave some in your shoes overnight, throwing it away in the morning.

Athletes Foot Treatment

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natural foot care

Anti-Fungal Natural Foot Care Powder

2 cups talcum powder or cornflour
2 tablespoons of baking soda
4 drops of tea tree oil
4 drops sage oil
2 drops lemon oil

Put all the ingredients in a glass jar and shake hard to mix. If it is lumpy you can use a stick blender. If that sounds a bit messy put the dry mixture in a plastic bag a crush with a rolling pin before shaking again.

Natural Foot Care as you age...

As you age, although they are done growing, your feet will get larger. Ligaments and tendons gradually lose their elasticity, and have a harder time holding bone and muscles in place. Your feet become longer, wider, and flatter and the constant force of walking causes your foot pads to thin out. This causes many of us to wear shoes that are too tight, in one area or another.

Here are some common problems that arise from shoes that don't fit.

Corns are usually hard, yellowish circles of skin on the surface of the toes. They appear shiny and polished, and sometimes they develop a translucent center—a bit like a corn kernel—known as a nucleation, which enters the flesh in a cone-shaped point. Corns can also be soft and whitish, but soft corns are typically found on the webs between the fourth and fifth toes.

Usually the culprit is a narrow toe box (the reinforced area in the shoe's tip, and the usual victim is the little toe, which rotates outward because of too much motion in the front of the foot. Hard or soft, most corns develop when toes rub against the shoe in which they're enclosed or against each other.

The larger they grow and the more they rub against your shoe, the more painful corns can become. Eventually they can break down, forming skin ulcers that lead to infection. Corns may also cause severe pain by rubbing against a bursa—one of the sacs of fluid that overlies and protects each joint in your body.

If a corn develops on top of a bursa, as is often the case, the sac takes on more fluid to protect the bone and the result is bursitis, an inflamed and swollen bursal sac.

The herb celandine has a worldwide reputation as a corn remover. Here's a gentle natural foot care herbal remedy that you can make yourself for softening and removing corns:

Natural Foot Care Corn Remover

6 cups water
1 teaspoon potassium chloride
4 ounces fresh celandine, chopped
1 cup glycerine

Put the water in a medium saucepan and add the potassium chloride. Heat and stir until the potassium chloride dissolves. Remove from the heat, add the celandine and let stand for 2 hours.

Return the pan to the heat and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.

Strain the liquid into a medium bowl using a wire strainer. Discard the plant material.

Return the liquid to the pan and let it simmer until it is reduced to 1 1/2 cups. Add the glycerin and continue simmering until the liquid is reduced to 2 cups. Strain the liquid, place it in a bottle and store it in cool place. Apply it to corns twice a day--for example, before you leave for work and before you go to bed.

Note that potassium chloride is available at supermarkets as a commercial salt substitute. Celandine can be found in the produce section of health food stores.

Calluses, thick, hard, layers of skin develop from friction. Calluses aren't limited to the feet—they can form on other areas of the body (hands). Shoes—specifically high heels—are to blame for most calluses.

There are several reasons calluses may form:

• if the metatarsal bones are too long or badly aligned

• if the arch is excessively low or high

• if the fat pad on the sole of the foot has atrophied

• if the Achilles tendon is short

• if the person walks with an abnormal gait or is obese

Additionally, calluses may form around warts caused by viral infections or around foreign bodies such as splinters.

Ingrown Nails and Nail Fungus(see remedy for athletes foot above) usually result from wearing shoes that don't allow your toes enough space to move. Alway cut nails straight across, and not down towards outside of toe, this will prevent ingrown toenails.

Bunions may be hereditary. They appear at the base of the big toe and wearing tight shoes can exacerbate the problem.

Hammertoes are caused when the big toe is forced to bend at the middle joint, making the tip of your toe face downward instead of forward (from shoes that are too small??). You won't be able to straighten hammertoes.

High heels can cause their own set of problems.

natural foot care heels

Shortened Achilles Tendon

Your high heeled shoes prevent your heel from coming into regular contact with the ground and the achilles tendon doesn't fully stretch the way it normally would.

Metatarsalgia results from the high heeled shoes shifting a great amount of weight onto the ball of the foot, resulting in chronic pain.

Stress Fractures are tiny cracks in bones caused from pressure on the front of the foot.

Natural Foot Care Herbal Foot Solutions

Practitioners of reflexology believe the feet are conduits to the body’s ailments. Each spot on the foot corresponds to a bodily organ, so an herbal natural foot care bath will leave the recipient with an overall feeling of well being. There are several good choices for an herbal foot bath–-I’ve already mentioned the benefits of lemon balm. Some other good choices are:

*Mugwort is a night-blooming herb that helps regulate menstrual cycles and helps reduce water retention.

*Gotu Kola enhances your dream time. It brings clarity and enlightenment to ideas and thoughts, so it’s a good herb for anyone who is feeling muddled.

*Meadowsweet is a European herb associated with Goddesses. Meadowsweet brings you joy in your sexuality which I can’t imagine anyone not finding useful.

You can either make a big pot of herbal tea and pour that into the foot bath or add a tincture of the herb to warm water.

After the natural foot care bath, massage an herbal oil onto the feet. Rosemary is a good choice for this. Rosemary opens the heart to love.

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