Nail beds constantly give rise to nail tissue and adequate vitamin, mineral and nutrient intakes help support the growth, formation and strength of new nail cells. A change in the appearance, shape and texture of the nail indicates nutrient deficiencies and as such supplements and vitamins should be taken.
Supplements are more than just vitamins. They are products that are ingested with the intention of supplementing or adding to your diet. They include vitamins, minerals, herbs and nutrients.
Taking in supplements or vitamins will not instantly solve your nail issues because every individual is different and so is their health. Nail vitamins are not likely to be detrimental to your health and can help build up your system (depending on what you are ingesting).
Here are some important nail vitamins you can take to keep your nails healthy.
Biotin promotes healthy cell growth and aids in the metabolism of protein-building amino acids that are essential for nail growth. You do not have to take in biotin straight from the bottle but instead you can eat biotin-rich foods such as liver, egg yolk, dairy products, yeast, salmon, avocado, sweet potato, nuts, seeds and even cauliflower to help strengthen your brittle fingernails.
2. Other B Vitamins
Vitamin B12 plays a role in iron absorption, as well as the development of red blood cells. Both iron and B12 are necessary to keep the nails strong and healthy. Vitamin B12 can be found in animal foods such as meat, poultry, fish, egg, and dairy.
You can also take Vitamin B9, it is also important for nail growth and health. It contributes to the formation and development of new cells. Vitamin B9 can be found in dark green vegetables, citrus fruits, beans, peas, lentils, nuts, seeds and avocado.
Nails are made of a fibrous structural protein called keratin. This is what gives nails their strength and resilience, it also protects the nails from damage and stress. Eating enough protein through your diet is essential for boosting keratin production and thus creating strong nails, whereas low protein intake may cause weaker nails.
Protein can be found in animal foods such as poultry, meat, fish, eggs and dairy. It can also be found in plant foods such as soy, legumes, beans, lentils, nuts, seeds, and whole grains.
4. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids can help lubricate and moisturize your nails, giving them a shiny appearance. These fatty acids can help reduce inflammation in your nail beds, which nourishes and promotes the health of cells that gives rise to your nail plate.
A lack of omega-3 fatty acids can cause your nails to become dry and brittle. Omega-3 fatty acids can be found in fatty fish like salmon, trout, mackerel, tuna and sardines. They can also be found in walnuts, soy, eggs, chia seeds, flaxseeds and flaxseed oil.
5. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is essential for the production of collagen, a protein that gives shape, strength and integrity to many tissues and is the building block of fingernails, hair and teeth. A deficiency in vitamin C can result in brittle nails and slowed nail growth.
Vitamin C is an essential nutrient that cannot be produced by your body so it has to be taken in. foods such as citrus fruits, bell peppers, green vegetables and tomatoes are high in vitamin C.
A nutrient-rich diet is the best and safest way to achieve strong, shiny, healthy nails. Try to get your vitamins and nutrients from food, but when you can’t, taking a supplement can help you meet your needs and likely improve your nail health.