Interesting Facts About Feet
Our feet are the unsung heroes of our body. They are one of the most overworked but under-appreciated part of our body, too. If you think about it, our feet helps us take 8,000 to 10,000 steps every day that’s over 100,000 miles over the course of one lifetime. That is even enough to take us four times around the world which puts a lot of wear and tear on our complicated foot bones.
Our feet may not be the most glamorous part of our body and if you will look at it closely, they are somewhat strange but incredibly interesting. That’s why in this article, we are going to give you some fun and funky facts about the human foot.
There is actually a Guinness World Record for the most number of feet and armpits smelled.
A woman named Madeline Albrecht who worked for an Ohio lab that tests for Dr. Scholl products for fifteen years has sniffed more than 56,000 pair of pits and an uncalculated number of armpits. Currently, Madeline Albrecht holds the Guinness World Record for the number of feet and armpits she smelled.
Humans have been wearing shoes for a very long time.
According to research done at Washington University in St. Louis where they analyzed foot bones from early humans and Neanderthals, humans started wearing shoes about 40,000 years ago. The oldest pair of shoes that was found was buried in ancient sheep dung in a cave in Armenia. It was a 5,500-year-old leather moccasin that is older than Stonehenge.
The big toe is used to be a foot thumb.
The big toe helped our ancestors climb trees more efficiently and it also helped babies and young ones to grip onto their mothers. And today, thanks to modern technology, if you accidentally lose your thumb, you can now have it replaced with a toe. Surprisingly, toe-to-thumb transplants are one of the most common procedure nowadays.
The bones in our feet continue to mature until we reach 21.
It is a well-known fact that a full quarter of the bones in our body are found in our feet. But did you know that the chunky baby feet we love so much are mostly made up of cartilage? They don’t even have an arch yet. That’s why babies cannot walk when they are born. Around the time we turn two years old, our feet start to develop an arch and the cartilage in our feet starts to harden and turn into bones. This process takes a very long time because it continues until we’re 21 years old.
Foot cheese exists.
Warm and sweaty feet make a perfect place to grow bacteria. The bacteria which feeds on our dead skin cells can produce acids and gas that gives out those stinky foot odors. That is why it is possible to make actual cheese with the bacteria that can be found in foot sweat. In fact, back in 2013, there is an exhibition in Dublin where that displayed different kinds of cheeses that was made with bacteria samples from people’s belly buttons, armpits, and of course, feet. But nobody actually ate any of the cheeses.
Shop for shoes in the afternoon.
According to the American Podiatric Medical Association, the best time to shop for shoes is in the afternoon. People’s feet tend to swell a little during the day and it is best to buy shoes to fit them then. And when you buy shoes, you should try them on both feet because a lot of people have one foot larger than the other and it is best to buy the shoes that fit the larger one.
Toe wrestling is an actual competitive sport.
Since 1970, toe wrestling has been a sport in different countries. It even has a Toe Wrestling World Championship complete with men’s and women’s division. In toe wrestling, opponents try to pin and hold down their opponent’s bare toes for three seconds. The one who wins two times out of three rounds wins.
Fear of feet is called Podophobia.
Podophobia manifests itself as anger or extreme disgust to the sight of feet. Many people who have podophobia gets upset by reading about feet, talking about feet, and even touching their own feet. Having extreme podophobia can have harmful effects on people’s health because it impacts their ability to put and remove shoes and socks, or wash their own feet. And it can lead to serious infections and other problems.
There is a reason why older people have weird looking toenails.
As a person gets older, toenails tend to thicken which makes them hard to trim. This is because our toenails grow slower as we age which causes the nail cells to accumulate. But dropping things on your feet, stubbing toes, and bad shoes can also contribute to the thickening of our toenails.
An average person walks about 100,000 miles in a lifetime.
If you think about it, that’s a lot of stress on our feet. That’s why it is not surprising that our lower back pains, spine misalignment, headaches, and indigestion are often related to foot problems. Runners, on the other hand, go way past the 100,000 miles a lifetime mark. For example, runner Herb Fred has run a total of 274,172 miles during his lifetime.
Women had a lot more foot problems than men.
This painful fact is often connected with women wearing heels. Ironically, one of the reasons why Western women started wearing heels is to give them a more masculine look.
Many famous actresses has big feet.
Small feet are often celebrated to be more feminine. But there are several glamorous women have had larger than average feet. Among them were Uma Thurman, Jacqueline Kennedy, Oprah Winfrey, and Audrey Hepburn.
About .1 percent of children are born with extra toes.
While it is an uncommon happening, about one or two in every 1,000 children are born with an extra toe. It is a condition called polydactylism. In fact, there is a Chinese boy that was born with six extra toes and five extra fingers.
There is a condition where toes overgrow.
This rare condition is called Macrodactyly. It is a congenital condition where one or more toes grows extremely large because of the overgrowth of tissues and bones in the foot.
Our feet are the most ticklish part of our body.
Humans have a total of 8000 nerves in our feet and almost of nerve endings are near the skin that is why our feet are sensitive to touch.
We love pedicures.
According to a study that was done in 2016, nail salons in the United States generated over 8.5 billion dollars in sales. At first, having a regular pedicure might seem like a form of indulgence, but a study showed that having pedicures can have terrific health benefits such as improved blood circulation from the massage, and preventing ingrown toenails.
Our feet have about 250,000 sweat glands.
This is a good explanation for why sweat is associated with feet. According to research, these sweat glands can produce a half a pint of sweat every day.
Foot widths and sizes are increasing in the United States and the United Kingdom
According to a study by the College of Podiatry in the U.K in 2014, the average foot size has increased two sizes since the ‘70s. They said that people have grown heavier and taller, our feet respond by growing.
- The largest feet in the world measures about 1 foot and 3 inches long.
- A man named Brahim Takioulla from Morocco currently holds the Guinness World Record for having the largest feet in the world. His feet require a European size 58 shoe and a cobbler once charged him for almost 5,000 dollars for one custom pair of shoes.
- The smallest feet in the world just measures 3.72 inches long.
The smallest non-bound feet in the world is owned by a 19-year-old girl from India named Jyoti Amge.
- Our toenails grow more slowly than our fingernails.
- Almost 75 percent of people encounter foot problems in their lifetime.
- According to research, almost five percent of Americans have callouses and corns.
The same number applies for Americans who have ingrown toenails, and fungal infections of the feet.
- The skin on the soles of our feet is much thicker than any skin in our body.