7 NAIL CONDITIONS THAT ARE LINKED TO SERIOUS HEALTH ISSUES (AND WHAT TO DO ABOUT THEM)
Our nails can indicate nutrient deficiencies and also health issues. Our nails mostly suffer if we do not take a proper care of our bodies. Once the nutrients enter the body, our hair, skin, and nails, get them last, thus if we experience an issue with the nails, then it might be a signal that something’s wrong with our health.
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The fingernails and toenails are made of keratin protein and they protect the ultra-sensitive skin at the end of the fingers and toes. This is known as the nail bed. The nails are formed by nail matrices and those are collections, of blood vessels, lymph vessels, and nerves, which are protected by cuticles. Based on the genetics of a certain individual, the nails can grow in different shapes. The healthy ones are similar in their characteristics and they should be: translucent (the pink color comes from the small network of blood vessels below the nail plate), smooth, and not breaking easily. In case the nails do not receive enough nutrients, then the nails will be damaged, plan, and discolored.
The nail issue can be fixed with changes incorporated in the diet, vitamins, supplements, and simple maintenance. Here is how to make them healthy and strong.
Problem with split and brittle nails
Cause: not enough vitamin B biotin and lack of moisture.
Resolution: you should take 2,000 mcg of biotin on daily basis or nosh on biotin-rich cauliflower, peanuts, and lentils. Moreover, to moisturize the nails from the inside, then consume 1,000 mg of fish oil daily as it is packed with EPA, or eicosapentaenoic acid, and DHA, or docosahexaenoic acid. Apply natural oil such as almond oil to hydrate the nails from the outside and wear gloves upon dish washing so that the nails do not dry out.
Problem with soft or upward curling nails
Cause: deficiency of iron.
Resolution: if the tests confirm that you have iron deficiency, then you should take 325 mg of iron sulfate 3 times per day.
Problem with vertical ridges
Cause: age (think of them as wrinkles on your nails).
Resolution: in order to smooth the ridges out, you should use a few drops of almond oil and a chamois buffer to polish the nails. Buffing will remove the thin layer of the nail, thus take only 3-4 swipes per nail on a weekly basis. Avoid the conventional ridge filters s they use synthetic chemicals such as noxious polyester resin in order to fill in the grooves.
Problem with horizontal ridges or dents
Cause: they are created by picking up at the cuticles constantly and hitting the front nail edge on a paper-towel dispenser. The dents indicate the same condition and are created by high fever, psoriasis, nutritional deficiencies, or trauma from surgery.
Resolution: consume proteins with daily allowance of 55 gr. you can also take supplements with up to 10,000 IU vitamin A on daily basis and 3 mg of chlorine-stabilized orthosilicic acid (dietary silicon).
Problem with yellow nails
Cause: not giving the nails enough time to breathe between the polishes and lack of vitamin E.
Resolution: take 400 IU vitamin E 2 times per day and also consume almonds, sweet potatoes, wheat germ oil, peanuts, and hazelnuts. They are a great source of antioxidants.
Problem with fungus
Cause: when the nail matrix and cuticle are constantly exposed to warmth and moisture, yeast or bacteria can grow around the nail area. The fungal infection spreads very fast, especially under toenails. They can become yellow-greenish, dirty-looking, thick, or separated from the nail bed.
Resolution: soak the nails into tea tree oil for 15 minutes a day, or take 200 mg capsules of myrrh tree 3 times per day. Topical and oral fungal meds are not a sure fix and may contribute to liver issues.
Problem with white spots
Cause: zinc deficiency, or nail trauma.
Resolution: 50 mg of zinc are recommended for consumption on daily basis. This mineral can be received through foods like red meat, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, and peas. As the nail grows, the spots will go away.
When is the time to be worried?
In case these recommendations above did not help, then it means that the nails send signals that something else is wrong with your body, i.e. you have an issue with your health. Here is what they denote:
- Blue nail beds – problems with circulation;
- Yellow nails – chronic bronchitis;
- Brittle nail – thyroid issues, hypo- or hyperthyroidism;
- Upward-curving nails – thyroid disease;
- White nail beds – liver disease;
- Red nail beds – heart disease.