Best Foods for Nail Health
Did you know that consuming certain foods can help your tips grow stronger, longer and healthier? If you’re looking to get your nails in their best shape, consider adding these best foods for nail health to your diet!
Nails are made of protein, so eating foods with a high protein content will help keep your nails in tip-top shape. When lacking protein, nails become brittle and discolored, so try incorporating more lean meats like turkey, chicken, beef and pork in your diet. Additionally, salmon is rich in protein and includes biotin and omega-3 fatty acids, which will help to prevent splitting, breaking and peeling. You may also want to consume eggs for easily digestible protein, iron and biotin.
Fruits, especially berries, are an easy way to obtain essential nutrients and vitamins and can contribute to stronger and thicker fingernails. Blueberries, blackberries and grapes are high in antioxidants which will protect your body and nails from stress and inflammation. Fruits like strawberries and kiwis have high levels of Vitamin C that help produce collagen to give your tips natural strength.
Look for dark leafy greens the next time you’re at the grocery store, with special emphasis on spinach, broccoli and kale. Providing your body with iron, folate and calcium, green veggies will make your nails tough. Other vegetables, like sweet potatoes, carrots, tomatoes and bell peppers are full of Vitamin A which can reduce dryness and make nails shine.
Nuts and Seeds
When it comes to snack time, reach for nuts and seeds, like almonds, sunflower seeds and Brazil nuts to add healthy fats to your diet. If you’ve noticed vertical ridges on your nails, that may be a sign of inadequate magnesium. Almonds and sunflower seeds are great sources of magnesium which help weakened nails. Plus, Brazil nuts are packed with selenium (builds collagen), zinc, Vitamin B and Vitamin E.
Beans and Legumes
For those currently maintaining a plant-based diet, eating beans and legumes offer opportunities to help nails grow longer and thicker. Lentils and lima beans are great sources of essential vitamins and minerals for overall health benefits. If you aren’t already following a plant-based diet, an easy way to consume beans and legumes is to add them to soups, stews and salads.
Opt for whole-grain cereal or oatmeal in the morning, or add brown rice or whole-grain pasta to your lunch or dinner menu. Along with being great for overall dietary health and energy levels, the complex carbohydrates found in whole grains will keep nails healthy with sources of biotin, silicon and cysteine. Biotin has been shown to reduce brittleness and splitting while increasing fingernail thickness. Oats are another powerful option that contain micronutrients, such as copper and zinc, that are important for healthy fingernail and bones.