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Why women get cankles

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The word “cankles” became popular in 2001. Cankles can be of different types but whatever the type is; developing thick ankles is not being a good thing for you. Let’s find out why many women suffer from this problem.

Genetic predisposition

Many women who suffer from cankles are genetically predisposed to have such type of lower leg. If one of your parents had oversized ankles, you’re more likely to have it because you have inherited them. Sometimes this may happen because of obesity or a structural absence of a well-defined calf muscle. It may also happen in case of people who are otherwise physically fit.

If this is the case, surgery may help. Many women undergo ankle liposuction to get rid of this problem. This procedure is becoming popular with women who want to reduce their ankle circumference. However with surgery, there are risks involved and the results may not be exactly what you want. It is important to talk to your doctor before you go for surgery. Some other people believe that exercise may help them to get rid of this problem but it is very difficult to spot reduce.

Fluid retention

Some people may suffer from cankles because of fluid retention. In case of some people fluid buildup in the ankle happens that makes it look bigger. It happens because of a heavy sodium intake. So, it means the problem arises because of your dietary habits. If you see that your ankles have started to swell and you feel as if you are retaining water at your ankles, you should immediately go and see your doctor. It is also important to talk to your dietician to find out what are the changes you need to make to your existing diet so that you do not consume more sodium which will ultimately lead to retention of water. Exercise may help you to reduce that but if you’re looking for spot reduce, that may not happen. An overall healthy lifestyle may help you to reduce the size of the ankles. More focus should be placed on your diet because by changing a few things in your diet, you’ll be able to make big changes in your life. When you suffer from cankles, you need to take a closer and detailed look at your existing diet to find out if you are consuming more sodium knowingly or unknowingly. Once you find out, it’ll be easier for you to eliminate that with some changes.


Some women may suffer from cankles because of pregnancy. During the pregnancy the ankles may swell and cause cankles. This is quite common because of poor circulation during this time. So if you’re pregnant and you are suffering from cankles, it may be because of your condition and it may go away after your pregnancy is over. To avoid swelling of the ankles, you can reduce or completely avoid high sodium, processed and fast foods. Staying active will also help you to feel better and to avoid swelling of the ankles. Regular exercise will help you because it will promote circulation of blood which is important to avoid cankles. However, before you start exercising it is very important to consult your OB/GYN and then only proceed with the exercise program. Elevation and massages are two other important elements which will help you by improving the flow of blood to your feet and it will also reduce fluid retention, if any.


1. No More Cankles
2. What Causes Cankles And Ways To Tone Them
3. Turn your cankles back into ankles
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