Nail disorders can have a significant impact on both physical and mental health. Thinning and splitting nails, as well as ingrown toenails, are common complaints. Certain medications, lack of nutrients such as Omega-3 Fatty Acids and ammino acids or lack of health routines such as nail manicures can cause significant damage to the nails and leave you with small, brittle and split nails that are not easy to keep strong and thriving. Nails are mainly composed of a nail plate (aka corpus unguis) of a protein matrix (keratin). The nail plate is the layer responsible for providing shape, thickness and pink colour. While the colour of a healthy nail distal edge (free edge) is white. Average nail plate thickness range from 0.39 mm – 0.48 mm . There are ways to prevent these nail splitting problems from occurring in the first place, but prevention is not always an option. Here are some tips for growing strong, healthy nails.
1. Eat food rich in protein to feed your nails.
The nail is majorly made up of proteins. Therefore, protein content in your diet and a balance of minerals and vitamins essential for the healthy formation and function of nails play a crucial role in the structure, process, and development of nails.
Food rich in protein: Eggs, Lean beef and pork, Veal, Free-range chicken, Tofu
2. Get proper nutrition, such as biotin for nails.
Biotin helps in the metabolism of protein that aids in healthy nails and a healthy body. Biotin is a vitamin B complex, also known as vitamin B7.
Food is rich in biotin: meat, nuts, sweet potato, dairy products.
3. Make sure there is no lack of iron.
Iron is required in our red blood cells (RBC). Our RBC is majorly composed of haemoglobin made up of iron that helps transfer oxygen to various parts of our body. Hence, a lack of iron leads to a deficiency of oxygen in our cells.
4. Calcium is essential for healthy nails.
Calcium is one of the most abundant elements in the human body. They are essential ingredients in the teeth and bones. However, lack of calcium can also lead to weaker nails because calcium is involved in several vital functions, including nerve signalling.
5. Have foods rich in zinc.
A diet rich in zinc is an essential factor in the formation of healthy nails. Zinc is a necessary mineral for the maintenance of nail plates.