The UK population is ageing and it’s predicted that a growing percentage of us will be affected by mobility issues in our latter years. Lack of mobility can result in poor circulation which in turn can cause feet to swell. As a consequence, many more people than currently will need to wear wide fitting footwear.
Obesity is also on the rise. The National Obesity Forum believes that half of all UK adults will be obese by 2050. Excess weight can cause feet and ankles to swell as it tends to compress the veins that are supposed to take fluid out of your legs. Obesity is also associated with getting less exercise which is important for helping the veins to do their job. Tam Fry, of the National Obesity Forum, says, ‘It is inevitable that as the nation becomes more overweight, their feet will become wider. It is another consequence of the obesity problem in Britain.”
The increase in diabetes in the UK will also fuel the need for extra roomy footwear designed to protect feet made vulnerable by the disease. Health experts agree that the UK is facing a huge increase in the number of people with diabetes. The charity Diabetes UK reports that since 1996 the number of people diagnosed with diabetes has increased from 1.4 million to 2.9 million. By 2025 it is estimated that five million people in the UK will have diabetes. Most of these cases will be Type 2 diabetes, because of our ageing population and rapidly rising numbers of overweight and obese people.