The word cankle sounds like an obsolete English word from Shakespeare’s time. But the fact is that it is very much a modern word that means a condition in your lower leg when the calf meets the foot and the ankle bone is completely invisible. In other words, it means excessively thick ankles. In fact, the word cankle is made from calf and ankle. Cankle is not a rare condition because there are lots of people, including celebrities, who suffer from this disease. However, most sufferers either simply ignore it or are not aware of it.
Cankle usually happens in overweight and obese people because of the accumulated fat in the leg. When the weight of the body presses down on the fat leg, the ankle bone disappears under the fat. But cankles can also happen to people with a normal weight due to lack of muscles in their lower leg. Besides causing physical discomfort and pain, cankles can also be embarrassing. Many cankles sufferers tend to hide their legs instead of trying to find a solution to their problem. Hiding never solves the problem; it only increases the problem.
People with cankle have a feeling of numbness in their ankle area. This is cause by poor blood circulation in the leg. Cankle may also be caused by edema (an accumulation of fluids sometimes caused by kidney disease), heart failure, hormonal imbalance and pregnancy. In some people, cankles can also be hereditary. The effects of cankles include swelling (because of water retention), pain in the ankle and trouble walking.
There are several ways to get rid of cankles that include the following:
- Losing weight: As the most common cause of cankles is obesity, losing weight is an effective way to cure cankles. This can be achieved by either dieting or exercise or a combination of both.
- Improving blood circulation: Another common cause of cankles is poor blood circulation in the leg. This can be remedied by having lots of vitamin B-3, also known as niacin, which is excellent for improving blood circulation. The foods that contain vitamin B-3 include chicken, turkey, salmon, peanut butter, potato, lentils and wholegrain braid.
- Preventing water retention: Cankles may appear when your body retains too much water. This can make the ankle swell and blend with the calf. Water retention may be a result of alcohol consumption, salty food, long periods of inactivity, pregnancy and hormone fluctuation. Drinking less alcohol, eating less salty food and living an active life can prevent water retention.
- Strengthening the calves: If you are slim and have slender legs but still have cankles, then they are caused by the lack of muscles in the lower legs. This can be remedied by doing exercises to strengthen the calf muscles, such as calf raises, trampoline workouts and jumping exercise.
- Surgery: You should resort to surgery only if everything else fails, although it is not dangerous in any way. Calf implants and liposuction are two popular methods of getting rid of cankles immediately. The surgery can be done using only with local anesthetics and the recovery time after surgery is minimal.
Whether you were born with cankles or acquired it along the way, having cankles is not healthy. While you may try any of the above methods, the best is always to eat healthy foods, exercise every day and lead an active life.