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Body weight

Posted by Dorothy C. on 5/06/03 at 01:42 (117883)

I have just been re-reading Scott's book, particularly about obesity.
What I would like to know is this: if one develops PF while overweight/obese and then one loses weight to reach a healthful BMI, can that person expect that the PF will disappear?? Or is it a case of once you have PF, you pretty much have it, regardless of whether you lose weight or not?

Re: Body weight

SteveG on 5/06/03 at 09:15 (117898)

I don't think it is an either or situation. There are people that have posted that losing weight was one of the things that helped them get better. On the other hand, losing weight is not a cure for PF. However, if you are overweight/obese, I would recommend losing weight for all the usual reasons - and for trying to help with your PF

Re: Body weight

Carole C in NOLA on 5/06/03 at 19:02 (117959)

Good answer, Steve!

It seems to be an individual thing. In my case, I lost 80 pounds (and was about half way through the weight loss I was planning) when I got PF. I maintained that weight for a year and a half, and got rid of my PF completely.

In my case, my feet were strong enough to handle my heavy weight, but they were not able to withstand the repetitive motion injuries they were getting when I rode my exercycle incorrectly. I was riding the exercycle enthusiastically but carelessly and injudiciously, to try to jolt myself off of a weight loss plateau. Oh well!

Other people have found that their feet really respond well to weight loss.

I will continue to struggle to lose weight (and I intend to SUCCEED!). In my particular case it will not be for my feet, but for all the other health benefits of weight loss.

Other people have reported marked improvement with as little as 5-10 pounds weight loss! It seems to vary from person to person.

Carole C

Re: Body weight

Dorothy C. on 5/07/03 at 03:01 (117987)

Thanks to Steve and to Carol for the responses. I fully appreciate the wide range of health reasons to reach/maintain a healthful body weight, but I did want to know if others had experienced a positive effect on PF from weight loss or if that was simply a reasonable assumption. Carol, your experience gives encouragement and I hope that your remarkable results give you a sense of great accomplishment. It's a difficult challenge and I truly respect those who meet it. I always take these 'pain messages' from the body as the only way that 'body parts' can communicate something and that perhaps the feet are saying to the brain, 'hey! we need some help here!.' Thanks again.

Re: Body weight

Sandra D on 5/07/03 at 08:29 (117999)

I am dieting now, hoping to lose at least 50 pounds to see if my feet imporve. I have been suffering for about 3 years with PF.

Re: Body weight

R C on 5/07/03 at 09:46 (118009)

Try this: pick up a 20 (10, 25, whatever) pound weight, and see if your feet feel any different. If the pain is noticeably worse, then it stands to reason that losing any unnecessary weight would conversely have a beneficial effect.

In my case, I noticed that the pain level increase was noticeable even with 7 pounds (i.e., the weight of my then newborn child). My PF was not caused by being overweight, but I had about 20 pounds to lose. I lost the weight (along with other treatments) and my foot eventually healed. I can't say that weight loss was the main factor in my recovery, though.

A few more thoughts on losing weight. For exercise try swimming or bike (if your feet can handle it). Put a couple of 5 pound dumbbells in front of your TV, with the rule that if the TV is on, you have to be moving. (Amazing how much your TV watching decreases!) Exercise is key: many of the declines we associate with old age are more due to our sedentary lifestyle than age itself. Gradual calorie restriction (eating fewer than you burn off) is the only healthy way to lose weight. Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers, Anne Collins are pretty good plans -- medically and nutritionally sound (though they ought to do more to encourage exercise); the question is whether you want to pay someone for the motivational and support aspects, and to do the calorie arithmetic for you. I am not comfortable at all with the Atkins and other low carb plans -- if you are disciplined and motivated enough to follow Atkins, then you can succeed brilliantly on a more conventional, nutritionally sound plan, enjoy small portions of your favorite carbs, with no risks from ketosis (ecch!). Or do what I did: Figure out how many calories you burn each day, count every calorie you eat, and make you you run a 500 calorie deficit daily (that will burn off one pound a week). There are lotys of free web resources for calculating your calorie requirement and for figuring out how many calories are in varoius foods.

Re: I lost 32 lbs, but it took my 2 years or so

Mahatmelissama on 5/07/03 at 18:13 (118048)

I started my weight loss program about 09/01. I find that every 5 lbs. I lose makes me have less pain. I am also though doing a lot of physcial therapy, I wear orthotics (SDOs by Dr. Kiper), I bend back my toes (to make them more flexible, I just recently got 3 shots of cortisone in my left foot (which HELPED A LOT).

I went from having pain at night that kept me awake and pain walking even 5 minutes to being able to walk Beast around the block. Last night, I was stressed out after 9 PM and it felt good to burn off some of that excessive energy with Beast the evil-protecting guard dog. I still can't go as fast as she wants (and she complains) but someday I will run with her, like my roomate does. I still have trouble standing but at least 5 minutes is comfortable. I can make small trips to the supermarket (ones that are not that busy) now. I used to have to order everything online and have it delievered.

I want to get back to the mobility I had in highschool. I walked about a mile to school...from my house near Westgate, through the shopping center...taking the long route...to Prospect High School. Boy I miss those days...never even thought twice about how long it was. I could walk easily and stand forever.

I am working on losing weight since it helps tremondously! :D

Re: I lost 32 lbs, but it took my 2 years or so

Rosemary on 5/11/03 at 15:58 (118336)

All the comments about weight loss is interesting and I remembered that my first experience with PF was right after the birth of my son, a pregnancy which I gained 45 lbs. I experienced foot problems when I still had 15 lbs. to lose which unfortunately came on and off several times over the past 10 years. The posting about lifting a weight and seeing if it makes a difference is so accurate. Even lifting a 5 lb. weight makes my feet ache - 15 or 20 extra pounds has got to make a difference. The challenge? Losing weight when one is so inactive .

Re: I lost 32 lbs, but it took my 2 years or so

Kathy G on 5/12/03 at 09:38 (118400)

Oh, you can say that again, Rosemary! In my case, in the eight years since I developed foot problems, I have gained about fifteen pounds. The bulk (no pun intended) of that was gained when I finally had to give up exercise altogether, about three years ago. About a year ago, I had gotten to a point where I was starting to be in the 'overweight' area on the charts but I lost all of that and have maintained my weight since then. I still consider myself overweight but I have always been slim and now I'm just normal. It's still difficult.

PF brings so many changes to one's life. In many cases, we have to alter our lifestyle completely, right down to the way we eat. I've never been conscious of my weight before. It's just one of the conditions little bonuses, I guess!8-(PIPE)

Re: post pregnancy

Joni P on 5/13/03 at 20:09 (118618)

Great website--this describes the symptoms I've been having since my third trimester of pregnancy (was on bedrest 2 weeks before and about 3 of no activity and then little activity) and for the past 5 months. (One more body issue to blame on pregnancy!) I have since lost the 20 or so pounds I gained, but still have it. So I blame the inactivity that followed.

I was curious to hear if other new mothers have experienced this--My back still aches some when standing for long periods and I was wondering if the foot pain on the right side was caused by my back being out of alignment.

I have found the pointing/flexing exercise of the foot/calf is remarkably helpful before I get out of bed!