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Supplements to Help Plantar Fasciitis

By Martin Hughes ; Updated August 14, 2017

Numerous supplements may help treat your plantar fasciitis. According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS), plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of pain on the bottom of your heel. It occurs when the strong band of tissue that supports your foot’s arch, or plantar fascia, becomes irritated and inflamed. Before taking supplements to help treat your plantar fasciitis, meet with your doctor to discuss possible side effects, drug interactions and proper dosage.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C may be a helpful dietary supplement to treat pain in your plantar fascia. Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is a water-soluble vitamin that you must obtain from food because your body does not manufacture it. Vitamin C is important for the production of collagen, a key structural component of your blood vessels, tendons and ligaments. The Dynamic Chiropractic website states that numerous factors may cause plantar fasciitis, including improper footwear, repetitive stress, a rapid increase in training intensity and volume, being overweight, age-related shrinkage of your heels’ fat pads and diets low in vitamin C. Increased consumption of vitamin C -- an additional 1 to 3 g of vitamin C daily -- can help with tissue repair and increase the strength of your fibrous tissues, including your plantar fascia. Before taking vitamin C supplements for your plantar fascia pain, meet with your doctor to discuss possible side effects and proper dosage.

Bromelain

Bromelain may be an effective dietary supplement for pain in your plantar fascia. The University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC) states that bromelain is a mixture of proteolytic, or protein-digesting, enzymes found in pineapples. Pineapples have been used for hundreds of years in Central and South America to treat indigestion and control inflammation in various parts of the body. Although bromelain may be used to treat numerous conditions, it may be most effective for reducing the inflammation associated with tendinitis, ligament sprains, muscle strains and other minor muscle injuries. According to Dr. Michael Carnes, a chiropractic physician and author of the book “Quick Reference Conservative Care Conditions Manual,” bromelain should be used in place of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications during the post-acute phase of plantar fasciitis to help reduce any inflammation present in the affected tissues. Before taking bromelain for your plantar fascia pain, meet with your doctor to discuss possible side effects and proper dosage.

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Turmeric

Turmeric may be an effective dietary supplement for treating your plantar fasciitis. The rhizomes, or underground stems, of the turmeric plant are dried and ingested as a powder or in capsules, teas or liquid extracts. Turmeric can also be made into a paste and applied to your skin. According to the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), turmeric, also known as Curcuma longa, has been used in traditional Chinese medicine and Ayurvedic medicine to aid digestion and liver function, decrease arthritis pain and regulate menstruation. In contemporary Western medicine, turmeric is sometimes used to treat heartburn, stomach ulcers, gallstones and musculoskeletal inflammation including plantar fasciitis. Before taking turmeric as a dietary supplement for your plantar fasciitis, meet with your doctor to discuss possible side effects and proper dosage.

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