High-heeled footwear, for the last 250 years or so, has been blamed
for all sorts of medical complaints – corns, sprained ankles,
shortened calf muscles, sore backs, ingrown toenails, and
| This is a medical
fact that perhaps millions of women would hesitate to
accept, and that even more men would find difficult to imagine.
because men find women in heels really attractive, but have never known the
pain associated with wearing them!
made by the American Podiatric Medical Association found that 37% of women would
insist on wearing high heels despite the discomfort.
This says a lot
going to great lengths for the sake of beauty, doesn’t it?
Several researchers have actually gone
as far as measuring the “knee
torque” of women wearing high heels, and by doing so, those at Harvard
Medical School positively linked the fashion preference to knee
An expert from the Medical College of Georgia found that 12% of
the time, older women who wore high heels lost their balance. Yet
another podiatric association found wearing killer heels to be orthopedically
and biomechanically unsound.
What happens to your body as you’re wearing high heels?
First of all, heels alter your natural posture
as majority of your body weight falls on the ball of your foot – which
can lead to back problems.
Frequent wearing of high heels – say, regularly for six months – also shortens
your calf muscles and the Achilles tendon, which makes
walking with flat shoes extremely painful.
Another downside to wearing heels is a condition called “visceroptosis.”
This happens when the abdominal contents spill forward due
to the forward tilting of the pelvis, giving you that pouch which
many often mistake as a fat belly.
When visceroptosis happens, the internal organs are compressed.
Apart from these, you could also experience neck, shoulder,
and back pain – even headaches and jaw pain – as all our muscles
When the center of your body is pushed forward as a result of wearing
high heels, your spine tends to bend backward to
According to podiatrist Barry Radivan, the talocalcaneal joint – the
important joint between the ankle and the heel, on which the foot rocks
during various movements – is also not properly supported by
link to fertility problems
One of the more disturbing findings on the wearing of heels for
prolonged periods is its link to infertility. When visceroptosis
occurs, the internal organs are adversely affected, and this can
lead to dysmenorrheal and menstrual dysfunction.
As for women who are already pregnant, don’t go for the totally flat
footwear – wear something with low and wide heels for support.
The other side of
It’s best if
you take the stairs instead of the escalator to avoid stopping at
fastfood bars as well.
When done in
moderation, you can still look glamorous and stay healthy at
recommend shoes with no more than 4-cm heels,
and rest your feet whenever
Yorker claims that shopping everyday on her heels has given
her a much-needed workout.
rapidly in heels of moderate
heights, carrying shopping bags, can effectively take off more than 150
A study done at Oxford, this time of 111 British women aged 50-70
years old, revealed a reduced risk of osteoarthritis of the knee
despite their having worn heels with heights ranging from 1 to 3 inches.
There are definitely certain advantages to wearing high heels.
One of them may be improved posture as we tend to consciously
straighten our backs when we wear clothes that make us feel more
Another is that walking in them also tones certain leg muscles and
burns calories, as mentioned above.
But to play it safe, wear only medium-heeled shoes and good support
pantyhose. This will keep your calf muscles from becoming painful after
an entire day of wearing heels.
You could also try the Scholl Party Feet
gel cushions which help prevent the
pain felt on the balls of your feet after wearing high-heeled shoes for
These are soft, transparent insoles which provide a
cushion for your feet in
addition to preventing your feet from slipping off your shoes. They are
washable and reusable and can be bought at popular stores or on eBay
for as little as ten dollars.