Nails, just like skin and hair, are a reflection of our health as well. Signs and symptoms involving nails are one of the earliest manifestations of vitamin deficiencies. Let us discuss how these vitamin deficiency symptoms could be avoided and what is the best vitamin for nails.
Before we proceed with making a list of what is the best vitamin for nails, let us first throw some light on how vitamins affect the growth and strength of nails and what signs and symptoms should be a heads up for you to consult a doctor.
Do You Recognize the Early Warning Signs of Deficiency in Your Nails?
Do You Want Strong Nails? ...Vitamins Are Key
Our nails are made up of a protective protein called keratin, which is the building block of nails, hair and skin.
Nails respond best to the vitamins that encourage growth and production of keratin. Vitamin A is known for working at the cellular level, it promotes growth and differentiation of cells and tissues.
Vitamin B complex is yet another vitamin family that has a marked effect on the strength and health of nails. In this family, biotin or Vitamin H is especially recommended for healthy nails and hair. On the list of what is the best for nails, biotin would definitely be on the top, followed by vitamin A, C and D.
What are the Signs and Symptoms of Vitamin Deficiency?
While most of us look up to manicurists for all our nail problems, there are conditions where setting an appointment with your manicurist would be totally bootless. Dry, dull and brittle nails that tend to break easily, is something that a manicurist won’t be able to fix, but appropriate vitamins in your daily diet can.
Here are some of the signs and symptoms that indicate a specific vitamin deficiency.
- Peeling Nails: You will complain of peeling nails, if your diet is deficient in vitamin A, vitamin C and calcium.
- Longitudinal Ridges on Nails: is a clear sign of vitamin A, protein and calcium deficiency. Other conditions that you need to rule out include anemia, poor circulation and disorders of thyroid gland
- Hangnails: is a small piece of skin next to fingernail or toenail. The following picture shows how a hangnail looks like. This is caused by a combined deficiency of Vitamin C, folic acid and protein.
- Scaling of Nails or Cuticle: is a sign seen in deficiency of biotin, also known as Vitamin H.
Here is the Best Vitamin for Nails...
Biotin deserves a separate mention when it comes to its effect on growth and strength of nails. Although the evidence establishing its potential as a nail saver is weak, there are studies that have showed improvement in nails after intake of biotin. According to a retrospective study conducted in Switzerland in 1993, people who took biotin for brittle nails, showed an improvement by around 25%.
Sources of Biotin:
- dairy products
- and whole grain.
If you’re taking biotin supplements, make sure that your healthcare provider knows about this, as well as other drugs that you’re taking to avoid the possibility of a drug interaction or any other side effects. Just like the rest of the body, your nails are sensitive to diet as well and a balanced diet will naturally be reflected through healthy nails. Now that you know what is the best vitamin for nails, make sure that your vitamin intake is adequate. Be it through diet or dietary supplements, vitamins that encourage healthy nails should be a regular part of your daily routine.