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Get a head start from your feet


Get a head start from your feet

Your lower leg or foot can provide a lot of great information about your overall health and, in particular, the liver. TRUDY KITHER lists some of the signs to look out for so that your feet can give you a head start on health.

Usually when there is a problem with your liver (or heart), you will be able to see it in your feet.

This is because your heart has to send the blood all the way down to the feet and all the way back through your vascular system.  Feet are furthest from the heart.

Here are some signs to look out for:

  • Red and brown dots on the lower leg can be poor circulation and could be an indicator of diabetes.
  • Spider veins can be seen in cirrhosis as there can be a lot of estrogen building up in the liver, and too much estrogen can affect your vascular system.
  • Cracked heels can point to a vitamin B3 deficiency, lack of silica, or an Omega 3 fatty acid deficiency. One of the functions of the liver is to make bile and to help absorb fatty acids. Not just Omega 3 fatty acids but Vitamins A and E also contribute to skin health.
  • Itching on the bottom (sole) of the foot could be a congested liver or even a back-up of fluids into the liver or gall bladder. The reason for the itching, in this case, is the build-up of histamines in the body. Also, pain or inflammation at the bottom of the foot can be associated with the liver.  This can sometimes be diagnosed as plantar fasciitis when in fact, it is a liver problem.
  • Hot feet or bad odour can be another symptom of a liver problem as the liver can’t detoxify itself correctly and is backing up and emitting the odour through your skin. Your skin is your body’s largest organ, so that is where a liver that is not detoxifying properly will end up trying to exude its toxicity.
  • If you can push on your skin and leave an indentation from your fingermark, you have a fluid back-up called pitting edema. A fluid back-up in your body is also a common symptom of a liver problem.
  • Toenail fungus. If you have a liver problem, you will have higher numbers of fungus growing in your body because of the imbalance of beneficial microflora in your gut.
  • White nail bed or loss of the half-moons in your nail bed is often caused by poor circulation due to your liver.

Potential causes of liver problems can be the side effects of medication, high sugar (especially high fructose corn syrup) in your diet, excessive alcohol or caffeine, too many cooked foods (such as canned foods) and not eating anything in its raw form.

Eventually, this diet will be hard on your liver and kidneys.  If you have a low vegetable diet and junk food, the body will not be getting the proper enzymes or antioxidants.

Also, if you are doing massive amounts of protein, over time it will cause a build-up of a lot of nitrogen in your body and overload the liver and kidneys.

If there is liver or kidney damage, then definitely eat less protein and more vegetables.

This information is not intended to diagnose illnesses.

If you have any health concerns, see a registered and accredited health professional.

 Trudy Kither is a naturopath at Nature’s Temple. Visit

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