Why High Heel Shoes Are Hard On Feet:
1) The feet slide down into the toe, wedging them together which leads to hammertoe / bunions etc. You can add material (eg: suede)to the inside of the shoe that helps keep the foot from sliding, but it is an inherently unstable platform and the foot does move.
2) The angle which the foot is maintained at pulls the connective tissue on the front of the body downward, rotating the pelvis forward which makes the butt stick out, but also encouraging the ribcage to slump and pulling the shoulders forward. This moves the head forward, creating neck pain, headaches etc.
3) The muscles of the calves have to shorten to adapt the posture to the hyperextended foot. These muscles are associated with Triple Heater Meridian and the fight or flight response, and having them chronically activated can lead to Adrenal exhaustion and feelings of insecurity and excessive caution.
4) The nearly complete absence of medial / lateral stability in high heels is not only tiring on the knees, but activates the adductors and abductors of the thigh. These muscles are associated with Pericardium meridian which has the function of protecting the heart. If they are hyperactive, the heart is going to have trouble remaining calm. The feeling of instability can also have emotional fallout.
5) The foot’s arch support for the body is non-functional when the foot is positioned at an angle and shock loads from walking are transmitted through the ankle into the knee and hip without the attenuation that the spring action the arch provides. This is visible in how a heel interacts with a wood floor, leaving a dent equivalent to the damage you can do with a hammer. This blow is transmitted up through the body.
What you can do:
1) Get regular Structural Bodywork to reorganize body structure dynamics.
2) Wear flats, with built in support whenever possible, ie: running shoes to work and change at the office into your heels. Adding in a customized arch support can be very helpful in low arch shoes to help rebuild lower leg muscle function(1).
3) Buy Suede Inserts for your heels.
4) Do Yoga and regular stretching.