Foods to Eat for Healthier and Stronger Nails

It may be hard to believe, but your nails are a direct window to your bodily health. Keeping an eye out for any changes in the appearance of your fingernails can show you what’s going on inside your body. If you find your nails are dry, fragile, brittle, or peeling, there are many foods you can incorporate more into your diet to promote the growth of healthier, stronger nails.


Berries like strawberries, blueberries, and bananas (yes, bananas are berries!) are filled with antioxidants. The antioxidants packed into each berry prevent your cells from free radical damage. Free radical damage can lead to a rise in stress hormones and cause inflammation, impacting your body from top to bottom.

Kiwis and strawberries are a great source of vitamin C. Vitamin C can help to create collagen that strengthens your nails.

Bananas are rich in vitamin B6 and apricots have high levels of vitamin A which are also beneficial to growing resilient nails.


There’s a reason your parents always forced you to eat your veggies! Many vegetables filled with the nutrients and vitamins that your nails might be begging for.

You can count bell peppers and tomatoes in with the kiwis and strawberries as a source of vitamin C.

If you are missing some vitamin A in your diet, carrots and sweet potatoes can help increase your intake.

Cauliflower is rich in biotin, and according to HealthLine, a study done on an increase in biotin intake lead to 63% of participants seeing an improvement in their brittle nails. Coincidentally, cauliflower is a delicious alternative ingredient in pizza crust, chicken wings, and rice, so there are plenty of ways to include them in a meal you crave.

As much as we may not want to accept it, those dark leafy greens that many people avoid are also a fantastic source of calcium, iron, and folate. Collard greens, spinach, kale, and broccoli are all filled with these nutrients and really help to prevent brittle nails.

Seeds And Nuts

One of the tell-tale signs you are missing magnesium is the vertical lines or ridges that may appear on your fingernails. Almonds will be able to aid with inadequate magnesium, and can also be a source of protein.

Sunflower seeds are a great snack option for increasing your intake of copper and manganese which are needed for your body to produce connective tissue in bones and cartilage, as well as strengthening your nails.

Legumes and Beans

For those with a vegetarian, vegan, or plant-based diet who are worried about their protein intake from the absence of meat in their food, fear not. Beans are not only rich in protein, they also provide a great amount of biotin to support long, thick nail growth. Lentils have a whopping nine vitamins and minerals to boost nail health and go great in stews and soups.


Vitamin D deficiency is very common worldwide, and about ⅖ of Americans were found to be vitamin D deficient. Thankfully, eggs are one of the few sources of vitamin D that you can incorporate into your diet. They also contain vitamin A, B12, vitamin E, biotin, iron, and protein.

In fact, the protein from an egg is easier for you to digest than meats, letting your body absorb more of the protein.


Many fish, like salmon, are an excellent source of biotin, omega-3 fatty acids, and protein. These nutrients are important in growing healthy, shiny nails. Now you can justify taking yourself out for some sushi, it’s for your health.


Water isn’t really a food, and we all know that the entire needs plenty of water daily to thrive, but hydration is so critical to nail health that it needs to be stressed. If you notice that your cuticles look dry or are peeling, it can be a sign you may be dehydrated.

Brittle nails and constant breakage may also be pointing to dehydration. Increasing your water intake can help repair cuticles, and prevent brittle, frail nails so they can grow longer, stronger, and shinier.

Other Ways To Keep Your Nails Healthy

Even with a perfectly balanced diet, your nails may show signs of needing some TLC. Here is a list of other ways to avoid nail damage and grow the nails of your dreams.

  • File in one direction, not back and forth.
  • Oil your nails 1 to 2 times a day.
  • Give your nails time to repair after repeated manicures.
  • Make sure your brand of polish has healthy ingredients for your nails. Visit for dip powders, gel, and nail polishes that are less damaging to your nails.
  • Do not rip, peel, or forcibly remove your manicure. Each type of manicure has a different removal process that should be followed to avoid breaking or damaging nails.