Nails are usually referred to as windows to our overall well-being and it adds beauty to your hands. Nails are layers of keratin, a protein used to make your hair and outer layer of skin. Fingernails grow faster than toenails but also overall growth is very slow. On an average, fingernails grow about one-tenth of an inch each month.
Many nail problems occurs due to aging process, hormonal changes in the body, nutritional deficiencies, chemotherapy, medications and many other health problems. So, Nails should be properly cared internally and externally by having proper diet and nutrients as well as keeping them clean and healthy.
Here are quick and easy natural ways to make your nails longer, stronger and shiny.
1. Olive oil
Olive oil contains linoleic acid which makes it a good moisturizer. There are only some oil glands in hands and thus nails and fingers tend to get dry very easily. This penetrates deep into the skin and nourish well. This prevents water from evaporating and makes nails look perfect and shiny. Vitamin E in olive oil helps repair damaged nails and promotes nail strength and growth.
- Massage your nails with warm olive oil before going to bed
- Add few drops of olive oil to warm water and soak your nails for few minutes.
- Mix few drops of lemon juice with 1-2 spoons of olive oil and soak in it.
2. Fish oil
Fish is enriched with essential nutrients, healthy fats and vitamin. Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil reduce inflammation; lubricate and moisturize nails to make them stronger and shiny. Also vitamin A present in fish oil provides nourishment to your cuticles and prevent them from any kind of changes. Have 1 capsule of fish oil daily.
3. Lemon Juice
Lemon acts as a natural bleaching agent that removes yellow stains caused by chemicals as well as dust and dirt. This gives a nails nice shine.
- Rub a slice of lemon on your nails for 5 minutes. Rinse with warm water and pat dry and then apply moisturizer. Do this daily. Don’t rub lemon in nails if you have cuts or hangnails.
- Mix 1 tbsp. of lemon juice with olive oil or coconut oil. Warm slightly and then soak your nails in it for 10 minutes. Do this daily.
4. Vitamin E
Vitamin E is an essential ingredient for maintaining healthy and shiny nails. This improves blood circulation which carries oxygen to nail beds. It will bring back dull nails to life.
- Consume foods rich in Vitamin E like avocados, nuts, eggs, corn, tofu, broccoli, spinach etc.
- Vitamin E capsule can also be used to apply in your nails.
5. Hydrochloric Acid rich foods
Hydrochloric acid helps to break down food in the stomach and absorbs the nutrients into the body. Deficiency of this will cause your hairs, skin and nails unhealthy and shine less. It is important to include hydrochloric acid in your daily diet to obtain the sufficient nutrient.
- Consume food like apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, spinach, kale, barley grass, celery, black olives etc.
Tomatoes contains high amount of biotin aids nail growth. It also makes them thick, strong and shiny. Tomatoes also contain vitamins A and C which are essential for healthy nails and skin. It removes any stain and gives a good shine.
- Rub tomato slices in your nails. Do this daily.
- Mix ½ cup of tomato juice with 2 tbsp. of olive oil or coconut oil. Soak your nails in it for 10 minutes. Repeat this daily.
Nails are made up of a protein called keratin. You can promote nail growth by adding more protein in your diet. Protein makes nails strong, healthy and shiny. If protein lacks, it can cause white spots on your nails and make them weak.
- Eat lean poultry, fish, beef and pork as well as eggs to increase your protein intake.
- For vegetarian, you can have nuts, seeds, beans, legumes, spinach, mushroom and green vegetables.
Biotin is also known as vitamin B7 or vitamin H which is essential nutrient for the body. It is essential for building healthy fats in the skin and nails and improves keratin infrastructure. Slow nail growth as well as nail abnormalities like weak, thin and brittle nails are often linked to biotin deficiency. But excessive use of biotin can cause side effects like slow insulin release, high blood sugar levels, low vitamin B6 and C levels and skin rashes.
- Foods rich in biotin are carrots, eggs, oats, almonds, peanuts, walnuts, salmon, tomato, liver, bananas, mushrooms, sardines, legumes etc.
- Take a biotin supplement but consult the doctor first.
Yogurt is rich in iron, calcium, folate, vitamin A, B, C, D, E and K, zinc and protein which are all the essential nutrients needed for healthy and shiny nails. Yogurt is a probiotic food having friendly bacteria in it which digest food properly and absorb trace minerals into your body.
- Make yogurt your part of daily diet. So do not forget to eat yogurt every day.
- Mix yogurt with water and make a shake. Drink this every day.
Borage herb is commonly known as starflower. Borage oil highly enrich in gamma-linolenic acid (GLA)is good for anti-inflammatory, weight management and skin friendly benefits. Borage seed oil prevents nails from cracking and help keep them generally healthy.
- Eat one capsule of borage gel daily but consult your doctor first.