Since activity should be a part of everyone's routine, I thought I should talk about sweaty stinky feet.  Some among us suffer from stinky feet and as a podiatrist, I run into stinky feet all the time.  While some people can sweat gallons and still smell like roses, others just cannot seem to shake the stink.  Your feet are built to perspire when you are undergoing intense activity.  We don't know why exactly but it has to do with traction when you're running barefoot (perhaps the cavemen needed all the traction they could get when they were running barefoot away from mountain lions).  In any case, feet sweat.  So how do you keep the odor at bay?

While you may think that the odor is coming from the sweat, it's not.  The odor is mainly due to the bacteria that thrive in dark, wet, and dirty environments.  Unfortunately, most shoes are ideal for these little odor causing bugs.  Here are a few tips to help keep your shoes smelling fresh.

·         Wear moisture wicking socks.  Technology is great, and fortunately there are many socks on the market that not only allow your feet to breath (decreasing moisture), but wick away the sweat to keep your feet and shoes dry.   If you wear your shoes barefoot they will quickly become saturated with sweat which will actually decrease the breathability and cause you to sweat even more. 

·         Speaking of shoes, keep your shoes dry! If your shoes are soaking wet by the end of the day, make sure they get plenty of air so they can dry out overnight.  You should never put wet shoes back on.  The best antimicrobial solution is lack of water.  Bacteria, like humans, require moisture to thrive and will die if they are deprived of that moisture.  When I leave the gym I like to pop my shoes off and stick them on the floor by the passenger seat.  Then I power up the AC on the floor which dries out my shoes, socks, and feet.  Plus it feels great!

·          Wash your feet daily to eliminate any bacteria that may be growing on your skin.

·         If you really have a problem, then invest in an odor absorbing foot powder which will kill bacteria and keep your shoes fresh and dry.  In a pinch you can use some baking soda or salt!

·         Buy breathable shoes.  In the summer, sandals and thin lightweight shoes are a great way to keep your feet dry. 

·         Lastly, keep your feet healthy.  Talk to your podiatrist about maintaining healthy feet.

If you have any questions about your foot care, make an appointment with your local podiatrist at Affiliated Foot and Ankle Care located in Edison and Monroe NJ today.

By Nrupa Shah