As more and more genealogy companies allow us to discover more about our heritage through DNA testing, our interest in our ancestors continues to grow.
According to the MIT Technology Review, nearly 26 million Americans had their ancestry tested at home last year. Curiosity about the heritage contained in our DNA has led many to ask questions about how our ancestors manifest in other parts of the body.
For example, is the idea that you can tell something about your ancestors just by looking at your feet true?
Ancestry websites include ancient-looking charts with foot types labeled “Greek,” “Egyptian,” “Roman,” “Celtic,” and “Germanic.”
The graphs suggest that the angle of your toes indicates where your ancestors came from. Other websites claim that the shape of your feet determines your personality.
Does science support this idea? The answer is clearly no.
There is no evidence that genetics determines the shape of your feet.
Human feet are very individual. Your right foot and your left foot are not the same. The angle of your toes or the length of your second toe does not indicate your heritage or personality traits.
Read on to learn more about the differences between foot shapes and what your foot shape can reveal. For example, the way you walk or run, and the risk of certain foot and leg conditions.
Arch of the foot
One of the most noticeable ways that everyone’s feet are different is the arch. Most of us call the arch – the medium long arch – one of the three arches of the foot.
The medial longitudinal arch runs from the end of the heel to the middle of your foot, right down the center of your foot.
The lateral longitudinal arch runs along the outer edge of the foot.
The anterior transverse arch is to the side, just behind your foot.
Working together, the three arches help the foot absorb shock and adapt to varying terrain when walking and running.