menopause feet, oh my! Most Liked Hot Conversation


About fifteen years ago, my friend Lisa Flinn commented, “When you go through menopause, I read that a layer of fat on you feet disappears. It makes walking more uncomfortable.”

We were talking on the phone when she gave me this bit of info.

And like a lot of things you hear on the phone, I didn’t quite believe it.

Menopause and feet?

What could feet have to do with menopause?

I was a Menopause Virgin.

I thought menopause was all about the end of your periods, hot flashes, and maybe feeling grumpy.

Oh Barbara.

How could you ever be so naive.

About two years ago, my feet started to feel odd, as if…


As if a layer of padding was gone.

As if my bones were actually scraping the hardwood floors of this old house.

Here’s what one foot doctor has to say:

“Aging results in loss of fat below the bottom of the foot, even as unwanted fat is gained in most other parts of the body. This fat once provided cushioning, and we now find ourselves walking on the foot bones and skin.”

The doc goes on to recommend orthotics. If those don’t work, she suggests the injection of some fluffy substance into the actual foot.  Ouch!

Perhaps I’ll get to that point, but for now, I’ve found a cheaper, easier solution.

I bought super duper extra thick tennis socks. It almost feels like you’re putting a baby bunny on your feet.

Spring’s here, and my feet are ready to roll.

So far, pretty good.

High quality walking shoes help too.

Anybody else have a similar foot story to tell?


Tennis Socks

P.S.:  I don”t really know much about this brand. I just picked them out after googling “extra thick socks.”  My uncle isn’t chairman of the board or anything along those lines.

But Thorlo, if you read this post, a Friend for the Ride giveaway would be oh so fluffy cool and fun.

24 like

Posted in Friend for the Ride, health & fitness.

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30 Responses

  1. Generic Image Linda says

    Gosh I’ve never heard of this one.  Geez, something else to be concerned about.  I haven’t noticed anything in my feet.  Now I do have a different gait as I had a hip replaced….but that’s another hazard….

    2 like

  2. Barbara Younger Barbara Younger says

    Not sure it hits everyone. Maybe you’ll escape!  Not sure too many of my friends have had the same trouble.

    0 like

  3. Generic Image arden says

    I had the same problem to the point my feet were burning when I walked. Went to a podiatrist about ten years ago and had orthodics made. Never had a problem since as long as I wear them.

    8 like

  4. Generic Image arden says

    Yes I do Barb although I have been able until recently to get new ones every two years and so now have three pairs of orthodics. I also had a pair made for wearing heels but they do not work all that well and now I mostly stick to flats or just al little rise in the heel.

    4 like

  5. Barbara Younger Barbara Younger says

    Good info!  Thanks so much!

    0 like

  6. lifeworkdesigner lifeworkdesigner says

    This is why I love VW!  I find out that I’m not the only one….I am 66 and way past menopause but noticed a couple of years ago that the pads under my large toe had flattened out.  My feet also ache all over when I have a day of lots of walking.    
    I initially bought those gel-type inserts for my walking shoes but have now gone to an orthotic in them.  The rest of the time I wear NAOT sandals that have cork insoles or my favorite Clark flip-flop style sandals that feel like walking on pillows.  I spend more money to buy better shoes and thus have many fewer pairs, but I don’t mind.  
    LOL – guess we’re finding out why older women used to wear those ugly padded black shoes!

    19 like

  7. Generic Image Anonymous says

    I am 49 years old and had problems with tendons about a year ago. I had plantar fasciitis (both feet) and Achilles tendinitis (only one foot) and barely walked for about 6 months. Hormone therapy helped with morning stiffness of my legs and hands but did not work for feet problems. At first I tried magnet therapy, magnetic insoles, subaqueous ultrasound and acupuncture, but without results. Then my physiatrist recommended laser + ultrasound directly on the skin + methylprednisolone by electrophoresis on both heels for 10 days. I felt relief after this therapy, but pain was not gone away completely. Then I was taking Movalis tablets for 2 weeks and after I stopped taking this drug my feet was almost painless. A month after I can walk practically without problems. So, my advice is to try various physical therapies, some of them should help.

    4 like

  8. Mizona Mizona says

    W O W !!!!! I’m not alone! Thanks for making me feel “better” about my aching feet.

    8 like

  9. Generic Image Keep Learnin' says

    This EXACT thing happened to me. The bottoms of my feet get so sore. I have not been to a doctor about it, nor have I tried orthotics. I massage my feet with a pain-relieving cream which seems to help a little. Thanks for the idea about the padded socks.

    9 like

  10. Generic Image Anonymous says

    I’ve had major foot problems (on just one foot) since walking in a marathon many years ago. I had a toe joint replaced, have struggled with severe pain on the ball of my foot (metatarsalgia), and then was diagnosed with RA and developed a hammer toe. (And to think my feet used to be one of my best features:()After getting custom orthotics, the pain is much more manageable. I also look for shoes with metatarsal supports, and put metatarsal supports in the shoes I wear most often. I wear mostly Taos, Naot, and Clarks; sometimes Ecco, Seibel, Munro, etc. Anything with extra padding that doesn’t “sigh” when I walk is good–I don’t like the egg-crate style shoes for that reason! My difficulty is finding nice, somewhat strappy sandals that look good with slim leg pants. Most don’t have padding of any type. I’m 53, and hate “old lady” shoes, but that’s the direction I’m quickly headed! For those of you who need some direction for shoe buying, take a look at the “Barking Dog” blog. See if that helps with shoe selection. And Thorlo socks are my go-to!

    5 like

  11. Generic Image Anonymous says

    Oh yes!  I can definitely relate!  I cannot walk barefooted anymore.  As soon as I get out of bed I have to slip my shoes on.  Just never equated it to menopause, but it makes sense, as this is when all the pain began.  I love to wear flip flops, but they definitely are a no-no since by the end of the day I can hardly walk.  But I have found a flip flop I can wear and do want constantly, Orthaheels.  They are orthotically correct and give the support your foot needs.  I have several pairs, they have been a life saver!  I also wear Spenco inserts in my athletic shoes since I do Nordic walking.  Hope this helps someone else as it has me.  When your feet hurt, it stops you from doing so much!

    5 like

  12. Mizona Mizona says

    I too am an Orthaheels convert. Having plantar faciatis several years ago, I was cautioned about going barefoot EVER. In my retirement phase now, Orthaheel slippers have become my friend, first thing on in the morning, last thing off at night.
    Remembering back to a Steve Martin skit, Cruel Shoes, who knew that would encompass 90% of what I own ?!?
    Guess I’ll investigate the cushy socks next.
    At almost 59 sometimes I feel so young. Other times, gosh I feel so old. Aging gracefully is not for sissies !!!!!!

    13 like

  13. Shotajo Shotajo says

    Oh, wow, it’s good to see other menopausal women have foot pain too! It’s only been within the last 6 months or so that I have had a lot of problems. I’m still walking. I just deal with the pain. 

    I think the best thing to do is to get a good boot/shoe. Right now, the most comfortable pair of boots I have for walking/hiking are actually men’s (Keen). I have a friend who actually said to buy men’s boots because you know they have more cushioning. The boot makers figure men are on their feet more and need more cushioning. I never gave it a lot of thought because I figured a good brand should make both gender products equally, but I’m beginning to wonder now.

    The best women’s boot I have ever worn is actually a hunting boot. I found them on clearance and if I remember right they are Dunham.

    As for sandals, I love the women’s Keen water sandals. They are not dressy, but they are very comfortable. In the summer, I wear them around in the house all day. Don’t buy the canvas ones though. They don’t have any support and are not nearly as comfortable as the more expensive water sandal.

    Thorlo is a great sock! I have been buying their hiking socks for a long time. They are my favorite brand! I totally agree with buying a thick sock for cushioning. When it comes to socks, I don’t like all cotton. It seems strange to think of wearing wool in the summer, but I think the best cushioning socks have a little wool in them.

    3 like

  14. Generic Image Cat Lover says

    Orthotics made by my podiatrist have been a God send for me.  They don’t fit too many shoes, but paired with good New Balance athletic shoes, and I can walk forever.  Also find, that good old fashioned Crocs are great for wearing around the house – lots of padding.  Love Orthaheels too.

    2 like

  15. Generic Image Lolitta says

    Yep – same thing here.  It feels like the floor is coming right up thru my feet.  I use and love SmartWool socks – they are cool and comfy even in the summer and help provide additional cushion.  Inserts are a must for almost every pair of shoes.  Ahhh…. the joys…..

    3 like

  16. Wendy Ellen Wendy Ellen says

    I have this same problem and it really can be painful a I am an avid walker who puts in a minimun of 5 to 10 miles daily.  Besides the runners socks which are great I buy Dr. Schols double padded insoles.  They are fabulous.  You cut them yourself to your own size.  They have done wonders for me.

    2 like

  17. Fran Young Fran Young says

    I, too, have experienced this but never before connected it to menopause. Thanks for the information! I thought I was becoming pre-diabetic or something…
    That being said, I’ve taken to wearing those uber thick short socks w/ my walking shoes. You know, those kind that are sometimes “infused” w/ aloe and worn for slippers? They compress as necessary and the extra padding feels SO good.
    I’ve also had to throw out a lot of my beloved shoes and can no longer wear the type of sandal that goes between large and next toe. Just overall my feet have become very sensitive. But forever I’ll be a barefooted gardener, that’s for sure!

    5 like

    • Barbara Younger Barbara Younger says

      I can’t wear that kind of sandal anymore either. I think it’s because our skin gets thin. Ugh. I bought cheap, really flat (Long gown) shoes for my daughter’s wedding because they were oh so sparkly and darling. I though my feet would never recover!

      3 like

  18. Generic Image Faith Baker says

    For me, when I turned 44, entering peri-menopause, I also developed fibromyalgia and then found out after a blood test found out that Rheumatoid arthritis is my “primary” illness and FM is my secondary illness. As a smoker for 30 years, I  also developed peripheral neuropathy in my feet at the same time. Smoking constricts the arteries in the extremities and thus causes pain from lack of oxygen getting through. I never knew that menopause alone could cause foot pain. 
    Several months ago, I switched to e-cigarettes, which do not constrict the arteries-you are vaporizing the nicotine (pure nicotine-no tar and other chemicals) and you “blow” out water vapor, not smoke. It has made all the difference in the world for me and the pain in my feet. Although I still need to take painkillers, it is not a daily ritual and does more than just take the “edge off”. My backaches are also lessened from no “cigarette-hacking” as well.

    I used to walk daily for exercise and “mental relaxation” and still cannot do it. I miss walking more than the loss of anything else caused from RA, FM,  peripheral neuropathy, degenerative disc disease, and severe osteo-arthritis in my lower back amongst many other illnesses and irritations. It seems to me that everything started to go downhill when I started peri-menopause. I am using the e-cigarettes to quit smoking, and now smoke only 1-2 real cigs. a day. When I’m completely off real cigs. and gradually lower my dosage and amount of e-cigs., I am hoping that I can actually start walking again. Even if only for 15 minutes a day (as opposed to 45 min. per day), I will be happy.
    I have never been good in high heels, but have switched to Skechers “biker” brand of shoes which have a “sneaker” bottom and everything from a sneaker top to a gladiator sandal top and they are very comfortable, but I still have to use some form of foot insert. I haven’t tried orthotics yet, since I can’t afford them.
    Who knew that just menopause alone would cause foot problems? I should have known since I lost all my other body fat (like the little bit I had in my flat Causcasian butt, breasts, and even my calves-which made my legs shapely, and of course, it all went to my “meno-pot”.
    I thought I knew there was everything to know about menopause before I went through it, but boy, was I wrong. I’m still learning everyday!

    2 like

    • Barbara Younger Barbara Younger says

      Yep. Lots more to learn! I do find myself happier though and calmer in some ways. I don’t let the little things bother me so much, and I’m less upset by nasty or picky people. I’m trying to learn to chill in my later years!

      1 like

  19. Generic Image ClairesNan says

    Thank you ladies, I am so glad to know I am not alone with this foot pain problem! I would love to hear more suggestions and brands. I am going to look at Orthaheels and Thorlo socks!

    2 like

  20. Generic Image Manna says

    I recently found out about feathersprings, a shoe insert that is custom made but not as expensive as custom orthotics.  They will send you an info. kit including a neat way to measure for your fit.  I am going to try these as they were recommended by a chiropractor’s wife who has been wearing them for several years!  They cost a couple hundred dollars instead of several hundred and will fit into all shoe types.  The pain from loss of collagen, fallen arches, bunions, etc. keeps ramping up as I age and I am willing to give these a try.

    0 like

  21. Barbara Younger Barbara Younger says

    Sounds good. I’ll check them out!  Thanks.

    0 like

  22. Patti Winker Patti Winker says

    Seriously.  We lose fat in our FEET!  What a cruel twist in the ever entertaining topic of aging.
    BTW… I walked 3 marathons and wore Thorlo.  I swear by them!  They feel good, fit good, and last.
    Thanks for the info, Barbara.

    0 like

  23. RobbieG RobbieG says

    Ah yes, the dreaded menopause feet!  Is there anything menopause doesn’t mess with??!!  I suddenly got terrible pain in the bottom of both feet on my way through menopause.  Even my most comfy, fave sneakers didn’t feel good any more.  And I love to walk.  But after one of my 2-3 mile walks, my feet would hurt and burn for hours.  Went to the top doc podiatrist.  He diagnosed the pain as plantar fasciitis.  Gave me a shot in my right foot, which had the worst pain.  It helped a little for awhile.  He suggested pricey orthodics if it didn’t clear up.  My chiropractor started working on it with adjustments.  I started yoga classes.  And while I was getting into yoga, my chiropractor gave me an inexpensive pair of orthodics – cost only about $30.  I put ‘em in my shoes and went for my long walk.  My feet didn’t hurt!  It’s been months now and NO PAIN!  YAY!!!!  It took a monthly chiropractic adjustment, weekly yoga classes (which do a lot of work on the feet) and my trusty orthodics (I have 2 pairs that I put into whatever pair of shoes I’m wearing).  If anybody wants to know the brand of orthodics I have, I’ll check and let you know – I forget the brand, but my chiropractor carries them in all sizes.  I was so miserable – I feel your pain.   I know how bad it can be.  It took awhile, but it looks like I finally found the combo of stuff that worked for me.  I wish all you sore footed gals all the best in solving your problems with foot pain.

    2 like

  24. sjaneward sjaneward says

    OOps! Lost that first post…..Thick socks do help immensely, especially the ones with aloe infused.  It lasts through multiple washings too  Cougars boots and shoes give good heel support, which prevents pain.  I still have foot issues, bu icing helps too.  And knowing that it is not just me does too  Thanks VN!

    2 like

  25. Monica Monica says

    Love, love, love my Orthaheels!!  I was directed to this website when I was doing a Google search for my foot pain, read all of the above posts on Tuesday, ordered Orthaheels that day, now it’s Friday & no pain ….love, love, love.

    1 like

  26. Barbara Younger Barbara Younger says

    So glad they help! I’m spoiled now–just can’t wear regular old socks for walking anymore. Thanks for taking the time to comment.

    0 like

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