Does Proper Nutrition Affect Athlete’s Foot?

It is well known that proper nutrition is the key to good health and longevity. Maintaining a well balanced diet is the single most important thing that you can do to maintain a healthy body. Good nutrition keeps your weight in a desirable range, lowering your risk of cardiovascular disease, and many other serious diseases. Eating a well balanced diet also gives your immune system the resources to fight harmful invaders.

The tinea pedis fungus is known most commonly as “athlete’s foot.” It is picked up in warm, damp places such as public pools, showers, or locker rooms. It is a highly contagious, persistent ailment caused by fungal growth on the feet. Often the most affected area is between the toes, where it is especially warm and moist; however, the infection may spread to all areas of the foot.

The first sign of athlete’s foot is reddish rash, typically beginning between the fourth and fifth toe. This rash is highly contagious and extremely itchy. The skin may become soft and extremely sensitive to the touch if the infection is allowed to spread and worsen. In the most severe cases, the edges of the afflicted area will become white and the skin can produce a milky discharge and peel away. Additionally, large cracks may develop in the skin as the infection advances, making the body vulnerable to additional infections. It is possible for the infection to be transmitted to other parts of the body by excessive scratching or tainted bedding or clothes.

Many people turn to natural remedies to support the proper nutrition necessary to promote normal immune system function to help it fight the infection.

The cornerstone of a healthy diet is a wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables. Because processed foods are lacking in the basic nutrients that the body needs to sustain a healthy immune system, it is important to limit the consumption of these foods and focus on raw, preferably organic vegetables and fruits. Green leafy vegetables are especially necessary as they contain an abundance of the photochemicals that protect your body against toxins and diseases.

A majority of the calories consumed each day should be carbohydrates, up to 50-60%. However, it is very important to be conscious of what carbohydrates you are using to fill this requirement. Packing your diet with sugar and wheat flour is a sure way to load up on calories and eventually pounds as these substances contain little or no value and are almost immediately transformed into sugar. This is especially important if you are affected with athlete’s foot as a high blood sugar contributes to the spread of infection. Carbohydrates that benefit your body are those found in whole grains, beans, vegetables and non-tropical fruits.

Another important factor impacting your immune system is the proper intake of healthy fats, such as those found in olive oil, oily fish, walnuts and flax. Eating vegetable protein from beans, fish, and low fat dairy products also contributes to overall good health and the strengthening of the immune system. Consuming at least 40 grams of fiber a day promotes the elimination of toxins from the body and drinking six to eight glasses of water per day will also keep your immune system up and your chances of contracting infections such as athlete’s foot down.

Avoiding any ailment is typically much easier than getting rid of it and the best way to maintain good health and an immune system that can successfully fight off athlete’s foot is to give your body the fuel it needs to function properly. It is also wise to take some common sense precautions to lessen your exposure to the fungus. The most important step you can take is to keep the feet dry, especially between the toes. Ensure that the environment in your socks is inhospitable to fungal growth. Socks that are made of cotton, wool, or other natural materials allow feet to breathe and remain dry. If your feet commonly sweat, see that your socks remain clean and dry, even if this means changing socks during the day. Choose shoes that are well ventilated and give them a chance to dry out before wearing them again. It is also important to reduce the risk of exposure by wearing waterproof sandals or shoes in public showers, locker rooms, and any other warm damp place that may host tinea pedis.