What is Ailing the Feet of North Korea’s Kim Jong Un?

Amid much speculation and poor global communication, recent talk has surrounded the foot health of North Korea’s stringent dictator, Kim Jong Un who has been out of public display from about a month now. Is it gout? Is it two sprained ankles? Is it a poor choice of shoes? Or could it be from poor diet and lifestyle habits? Either way, the combination of all of these symptoms does not spell out a good ending for the toes and ankles of the Kim Jong Un.


Some sources indicate that the leader has been suffering from gout, a painful form of arthritis caused by the buildup of uric acid crystals in joints throughout parts of the body. Historically gout has been known as “The Disease of Kings” and “The Rich Man’s Disease” because it was often found among the lavish leaders of historic societies and rare among the limber, fit peasantry. The North Korean leader does not practice the healthiest lifestyle, with sources indicating habits of excessive eating and drinking[.]

Whether you’re an Average Joe or the dictator of a controversial, isolated Asian nation, gout is a very real ailment that does not just target those with political power. Sources in Asia have revealed that Kim Jong Un has been suffering from gout in both feet, especially after notable weight gain over the recent years[.]

Cuban Heeled Shoes?

Among the infamous wardrobe of the North Korean dictator are a formal dress boot with 2-inch wooden heel-lifts, known as "Cuban Heels." The retro-looking leather boots are considered to be very stylish among the North Korean elite. Limited movement and hard, lack of support from the insoles of these shoes could potentially lead to swelling, stiffness, and pain for the foot and ankle. Many women can relate to the pain that they experience when they wear high-heels or even flats for long periods of standing. Likewise, men may get foot problems when wearing work boots during long work days on their feet. A good alternative would be to change your shoes regularly, let the feet breathe, and rotate the types of footwear you use on a day-to-day basis.

Sprained ankles?

Some sources believe that Kim Jong Un sustained injuries to both ankles after a long schedule of touring factories and military basis throughout North Korea[.] Poor footwear, constant standing, and obesity can put a lot of pressure and strain on the ankles, which can result in a sprain or break. Kim Jong Un recently went into treatment for his ankles, although for what specific reason is still unclear. Recent footage shoes the commander limping during a formal entrance.

Regardless of the state the Dictators feet, evidence suggests that his recent weight gain and degradation of any healthy lifestyle could very well be a reason for increased ailment of the foot and ankle. Even those with power can fall victim to poor foot health.

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