Naked. Nude. Bare. Au naturel. In the buff. Unclad. Unshod. Whatever you call it, your bare feet say a lot about your lifestyle.
The perfect human foot resembles that of a newborn baby- it is the widest at the toes, and there is natural space between the toes. This perfect design is a product of evolution. Our toes are splayed to give us better balance and to help keep our posture aligned.
According to Northwest Foot & Ankle, 87% of adults will experience a foot issue at some point in their life. Eighty seven percent! Why are foot issues, a relatively new problem, all of a sudden plaguing the human race?
Humans have lived barefoot throughout most of our existence. When we wear conventional footwear (including dress shoes, casual shoes, and running shoes) with a tapering toe box, we are squishing our feet into an unnatural position. This restricts the natural functions of the feet (think of it like putting a cast on your foot) and is often quite uncomfortable.
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In addition to making your feet feel claustrophobic, improperly fitting footwear can also cause foot deformities such as bunions and hammertoes. Whether for cosmetic or medical reasons, many people suffering from these foot issues opt for costly corrective surgery or natural alternatives such as wearing Correct Toes toe spacers.
According to podiatrists like Dr. Ray McClanahan of NorthWest Foot & Ankle, the best shoes in terms of foot health (and natural, beautiful looking feet) will have the following features-
- To allow the foot to function the way nature intended, the shoe should be lightweight, soft and flexible.
- To keep the foot in a natural position, the shoe should be completely flat (having zero drop).
- A wide toe box allows proper toe splay, which may affect proper posture and balance.
Before slipping on a pair of shoes, stop and consider how they will affect your feet in the long run. Will they help you look better naked, or will they make you feel self-conscious unshod?