Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Diabetic Foot Pain

Diabetic foot pain is frequently the result of circulatory issues and peripheral neuropathy. Peripheral neuropathy is a nerve condition that affects how the nerves carry information to and from the brain. It can manifest in several different ways including sensory, motor, and autonomic neuropathy. Sensory neuropathy can result in anything from subtle tingling to full-force stabbing pain. In some instances, a gentle touch can result in a surprisingly disproportionate pain. Motor peripheral neuropathy affects muscle nerves, leading to soreness, immobility and imbalance. Likewise, autonomic neuropathy affects functions that are controlled by the subconscious, such as sweating and reflexes. Diabetics suffering autonomic neuropathy will often suffer cracked skin and thickened calluses which can lead to bacterial infection and, in extreme cases, amputation. Circulatory issues can compound these problems and further contribute to diabetic foot pain.

If you are suffering from diabetic foot pain, it is important consult your physician so that you can create a custom treatment plan. The following is a list of commonly recommended steps for managing diabetic foot pain.

  • Diabetic shoes. Selecting a proper fitting diabetic shoe, complete with custom insoles, will provide the foot with proper support and prevent further irritation.

  • Exercise. Once you have the proper diabetic footwear, make sure you engage the muscles and joints in order to minimize stiffness. In some instances, your doctor may recommend physical therapy with a professional.

  • Massage and moisturize. Rubbing your feet with a foot roller and diabetic foot cream containing Vitamin B can help to alleviate pain over time. Use toe nail oil to prevent cracking and ask your doctor about prescription creams that may enhance massaging.

  • Compression therapy. The use of compression socks and support hose can improve circulation issues.

  • Check your blood sugar regularly. Persistent high blood sugar levels will contribute to the factors which cause foot pain. Make sure you regularly check your blood sugar and monitor any unusual swings or persistent dips/elevations.

Note: This information is not intended to supplement or replace advice from a medical professional, or to diagnose or treat any condition.

About MMAR Medical: MMAR Medical Group Inc. is a wholesale medical supplier specializing in diabetic shoes and braces and supports. Please visit for the best selection in diabetic footwear and all your brace/support needs.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Getting Feminine Feet Ready for Spring

With spring around the corner, it’s natural to start thinking about bare skin, sun dresses, and painted toes in sandals. It’s also normal to feel a little anxiety after a long winter of dry skin and pedicure-free feet. Now is the time to start preparing to look your best during the warmer months. There is something that is easy to fix now, even if you are still wearing moonboots and shoveling the snow off your car. It’s a small change, but it can have a significant impact on your health, preventing painful and unattractive foot conditions today and for years to come, including unsightly bunions, calluses and hammer toes.

The female foot, like so many other things, is fundamentally different in structure and biomechanics from the male foot. It’s not only smaller than a man’s foot, but also different in shape. It is much narrower, especially in the heel, distributing the weight differently and creating different biomechanical forces. Likewise the female gait is different than that of a male. Women walk a bit more loosely than men because of less muscle mass, looser joints (especially after childbirth), and a different waist to hip ratio. For these reasons, hammertoes, bunions, callus formation, interdigital neuromas, and metatarsalgia are all more common in women than in men. Since foot imbalances and subsequent problems depend on gender and genetics, it is important that women seek out custom orthotic solutions specific to their needs.

Many foot specialists recommend that women seek out flexible yet supportive custom orthotics. A properly fitted orthotic will help prevent or reduce foot problems. It may also provide back or joint pain relief and the reduction of joint friction and long-term damage. Ideally, the orthotics should support the longitudinal and anterior transverse arches of the foot, provide adequate padding and support, and reduce excessive heel movement. In addition to a custom insole, experts recommend ensuring that you are wearing properly fitted shoes. High heels increase the likelihood of improper weight distribution and excessive pressure in localized areas of the foot. You may need different insoles for different heel heights to ensure your feet are protected and look their best when you slip on those sandals when the sun comes back out. Many women with diabetes experience an increased likelihood of these foot issues. The good news is, diabetic shoes not only help to reduce foot ailments, but they also come in a wide variety of attractive styles including trendy sandals and Mary Janes.

Note: This information is not intended to supplement or replace advice from a medical professional, or to diagnose or treat any condition.

About the Author: MMAR Medical Group Inc. is a wholesale medical supplier specializing in diabetic shoes, as well as braces and supports such as knee braces and back braces. To find high-quality diabetic shoes and braces, please visit

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Alternative Treatment for Diabetes

Alternative medicine is a health-related treatment that is not formally classified as a western medical practice. Also known as complementary medicine, alternative medicine can include dietary and lifestyle changes, and includes everything from acupuncture to supplement use. In some cases, alternative treatments are unproven or even dangerous, so it is important to identify the treatments that are safe and those which pose a potential treat. Always consult a physician before including alternative treatments into your diabetes management routine.

To illustrate this point, it is important to recall the Ephedrine (aka ma huang) ban in early 2003. It was the first herbal stimulant ever banned by the FDA. A popular component of anti-obesity medications, ephedrine was found to cause more harm than good, with side effects including insomnia, high blood pressure, glaucoma, urinary retention, and stroke. For this reason it is strongly recommended that you always consult a doctor before introducing alternative therapies into your health regimen.

Supplements. Perhaps the area in which you should take the most care is in the arena of supplements. There are many snake oil salesmen out there, happy to exploit your desire for better health. Here is a quick reference list of the supplements that are most frequently associated with diabetes management.

  • Magnesium has been a subject of interest in medical circles for its potential for improving glucose levels, as a lack of magnesium has been correlated with abnormalities in insulin secretion.

  • There have been several studies that support the use of chromium use for diabetes control, though there are no formal medical recommendations for its use in diabetes management.

  • A few studies have suggested that vanadium, a plant derivative, can increase a person's sensitivity to insulin.

  • Some other supplements believed by some to manage diabetes include garlic, ginger, ginseng, hawthorn, and nettle. ALWAYS talk to your doctor before you introduce significant increases of these items into your diet.

Weight Management.Weight and diabetes are often linked, so weight management is frequently a corner-stone of diabetes treatment. Many diabetics turn to alternative therapies to help with weight loss. Some possible (though unproven and potentially dangerous) weight loss supplements include chitosan, momordica charanta, sauropus androgynus, aristolochic acid, camsogia garcinia (hydroxycitric acid), pyruvate, germander, momordica charanta, chromium, pyruvate, germander, and momordica charanta. ALWAYS discuss weight management with your personal physician prior to introducing any of these into your diet.

Plant and Natural Foods. Brewer's yeast, buckwheat, broccoli and other related greens, okra, peas, fenugreek seeds, and sage are all examples of plant foods believed by some to help with diabetes management. The vast majority of plant foods are high in fiber which is certainly helpful in controlling both glucose levels and appetite. Likewise, a recent report in the Archives of Internal Medicine found that individuals who drank 3 to 4 cups of coffee (decaf or regular) had a 25 percent lower risk for diabetes than those who did not. Further studies are required, but there may be a link between the coffee bean and diabetes prevention.

Alternative Physical Therapies. Exercise is truly the only FDA-approved physical therapy, and even with exercise, it is important to consult a physician before implementing drastic changes to your exercise regimen. In addition to exercise, some alternative treatments include meditation, acupuncture, yoga, aromatherapy, massage, and even hypnosis. Again, discuss these practices with your doctor before including them as they can be expensive and are not proven diabetes management tools.

Note: This information is not intended to supplement or replace advice from a medical professional, or to diagnose or treat any condition.

About the Author:MMAR Medical Group Inc. is a wholesale medical supplier specializing in diabetic footwear, including socks for diabetics and custom made orthotics.