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Avoid getting overweight to prevent plantar fasciitis (heel pain)

This is one of the most common causes for the heel pain. Plantar fasciitis involves inflammation of a thick band of tissue which runs across the bottom of our foot and it connects our heel bone to our toes (plantar fascia). This condition commonly causes stabbing pain which is usually happening with our first steps in the morning. As we get up and move, this pain normally decreases, but it can return after rising from sitting or after long periods of standing. This condition is usually more common in runners. Also people who wear shoes with inadequate support and people who are overweight have an increased risk of get this condition [1,2]. This condition is common in middle – aged people. Also it can happen in younger people who are on their feet a lot, like soldiers and athletes [3]. Plantar fasciitis can happen in one foot or in both feet. There are many cases when the plantar fasciitis is mistaken with Baxter’s neuritis which is a nerve entrapment in the heel. If you have chronic plantar fasciitis, which is over one year, then it can become plantar fasciosis due to avascular scarring of the plantar fascia.

Symptoms of plantar fasciitis

This condition typically causes a stabbing pain in the bottom of our foot near the heel. This pain is usually the worst with the first few steps after you wake up but also it can be triggered by rising from sitting or long periods of standing. You should know that this pain is usually worse after exercise, not during the exercise. But if you have noticed that you have foot pain at night, then you can have a different problems such as arthritis or a nerve problem such as tarsal tunnel syndrome.

Causes: Plantar Fasciitis, under normal circumstances, acts like a shock – absorbing bowstring, supporting the arch in the foot. If the stress and tension on that bowstring become too strong, then small tears can arise in the fascia. Tearing and repetitive can cause the fascia to become inflamed or irritated, but in many cases of plantar fasciitis the cause for it is not known. The mentioned conditions are more likely to happen if:

  • You have tight Achilles tendons or calf muscles [4]
  • You wear shoes that do not fit well or are worn out [1,2]
  • You are overweight [5]
  • You walk, stand or run for long periods of time, especially on hard surfaces
  • You have arches or flat feet [6]
  • You can noticed that your feet roll inward too much when you walk (excessive pronation)

plantar fasciitis causes

Risk factors causing plantar fasciitis

This condition can arise without an obvious cause, but also there are some factors which can increase your risk of developing it such as

  • Activities and jobs that keep you on your feet: Teachers, factory workers and other who spend most of their hours standing or walking on hard surfaces, can damage their plantar fascia. [7]
  • Obesity: It is known fact that excess pounds are putting extra stress on your plantar fascia. [5]
  • Foot mechanics: Having a high arch, being flat – footed or even having an abnormal pattern of walking can affect the way your weight is disturbed when you are standing and this put added stress on your plantar fascia. [6]
  • Some types of exercise: Activities which place a lot of stress on your heel and attached tissues, such as aerobic dance, ballet dancing, ballistic jumping activities and long – distance running, can lead to an earlier onset of plantar fasciitis. [8]
  • Age: It is known fact that this condition is most common between the ages of 40 and 60.

Complications: If you ignore this condition, then it can result in chronic heel pain which hinders your regular activities. When you change the way you walk can minimize plantar fasciitis pain might lead to back, hip, knee and foot problems.


[1] Sullivan J, Pappas E, Adams R, et al. Determinants of footwear difficulties in people with plantar heel pain. Journal of Foot and Ankle Research. 2015.

[2] Harvard University. Curve at tip of shoes eases movement but may lead to weaker muscles, problems: Toe springs in shoes may come at a cost. ScienceDaily. 2020. Retrieved from

[3] Scher DL, Belmont PJ, Bear R, et al. The incidence of plantar fasciitis in the United States military. The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery. 2009;91(12):2867-72.

[4] Stecco C, Corradin M, Macchi V, et al. Plantar fascia anatomy and its relationship with Achilles tendon and paratenon. Journal of Anatomy. 2013;223(6):665–76.

[5] Irving DB, Cook JL, Young MA, Menz HB. Obesity and pronated foot type may increase the risk of chronic plantar heel pain: a matched case-control study. BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders. 2007;8:41.

[6] Park SY, Bang HS, Park DJ. Potential for foot dysfunction and plantar fasciitis according to the shape of the foot arch in young adults. Journal of Exercise Rehabilitation. 2018;14(3):497–502.

[7] Werner RA, Gell NM, Hartigan A, et al. Risk Factors for Plantar Fasciitis Among Assembly Plant Workers. PM&R. 2010;2(2):110-6.

[8] Thong-On S, Bovonsunthonchai S, Vachalathiti R, et al. Effects of strengthening and stretching exercises on the temporospatial gait parameters in patients with plantar fasciitis: A randomized controlled trial. Annals of Rehabilitation Medicine. 2019;43(6):662–76.

Pardhan Singh
Pardhan Singh
A seasoned natural therapist with degree in Ayurvedic Medicine (BAMS) successful in treating various diseases through Ayurvedic treatments. You can contact Pradhan at [email protected]


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