9

votes

Fingernail ridges and brittleness

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created March 28, 2010 at 1:06 PM

When I first started going paleo/primal, I had problems with my fingernails being ridged/brittle, and after a coupla months, they were hard as rocks. A validation that I was doing something right if there ever was one. Now, again, they are ridged and brittle (my thumbnails are right down lumpy), though I really haven't changed much in my diet.

Any suggestions on what I'm missing / getting too much of?

F910318b9aa27b91bcf7881f39b9eabe

(1164)

on April 20, 2011
at 08:07 PM

I got a horizontal ridge right about the time i started paleo. Probably due to the adjustment and cleansing my body was going through...

A3bb2c70384b0664a933b45739bac32c

(951)

on March 29, 2010
at 09:03 PM

A good bone stock helps, because it is full of collagen. It comes from when the cartilage and tendon melt into gelatin, and in the case of chicken stock it can come from the skin as well. This is what gives the stock it's body and makes it gel when cold

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11488)

on March 29, 2010
at 03:39 AM

@ JGibson, if the horizontal ridges are just on your thumbs, it could be trauma. Acids such as vinegar are sometimes used as exfoliants ( http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art40156.asp ), so vinegar could cause peeling of skin or nails.

C8ff2dd43450e3ab1b1d06b9baf3cb30

(98)

on March 29, 2010
at 01:00 AM

Well, I'm 33, I would hope that it's not age yet. :/ I do take a K2 supplement.

C8ff2dd43450e3ab1b1d06b9baf3cb30

(98)

on March 29, 2010
at 12:49 AM

Mostly it's vertical ridges, but my thumbs have horizontal lumps across them. It looks like what people refer to as trauma, and lately some of my nails have started peeling. At work, I do most of my cleaning w/vinegar and water. Could the acidity of the vinegar be causing this? I've been using coconut oil on my hands, I'll pay some extra attention to my cuticles.

C8ff2dd43450e3ab1b1d06b9baf3cb30

(98)

on March 29, 2010
at 12:49 AM

I've been meaning to do just that for cooking reasons. Guess I have another reason.

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11488)

on March 28, 2010
at 07:36 PM

Vitamin K2 is involved with calcium metabolism. The calcium content of nails decreases with age: http://www.springerlink.com/content/x583r3857572v202/ . Just speculating here, perhaps K2 supplements help prevent or delay this decrease in nail calcium.

33b6c516904a967ef8ecb30f1dbd8cf2

(7073)

on March 28, 2010
at 05:13 PM

I agree, hair gets better conditioned too.

  • C8ff2dd43450e3ab1b1d06b9baf3cb30

    asked by

    (98)
  • Views
    8.4K
  • Last Activity
    1285D AGO
Frontpage book

Get FREE instant access to our Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!

7 Answers

7
6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11488)

on March 28, 2010
at 06:01 PM

In general, skin and nail health is enhanced by adequate intake of protein, essential amino acids, and essential fatty acids. Some folks take oral fish oil and unflavored gelatin supplements (or bone stock, as Melissa suggests) for their skin, hair and nails.

You don't say whether the ridges are vertical or horizontal. Vertical ridges are caused by aging, heredity, and sometimes dryness. When you use a moisturizer or coconut oil on your skin and hands, be sure to massage some into the cuticles and base of your nails. Also, wear gloves when you wash dishes or perform cleaning tasks or other jobs with harsh or drying chemicals ( http://www.buzzle.com/articles/vertical-fingernail-ridges.html ).

Horizontal ridges are not always as benign as vertical ridges. They are caused by interruptions in the growth of the nail. This can be caused by physical or psychological stress, trauma, malnutrition, medications (such as chemotherapy), and illnesses (such as diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis or Crohn's disease). If you have recurrent horizontal nail ridges, you should talk to your doctor about it. Ref: http://www.ehow.com/about_5033525_causes-horizontal-ridges-fingernails.html

Other nail changes can sometimes be related to nutritional deficiences or medical conditions. Brittleness can be associated with iron or biotin deficiency, or with thyroid, kidney or circulation problems. Splitting and fraying can be associated with psoriasis, or with deficiencies of vitamin C, folic acid, or protein ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nail_disease ).

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11488)

on March 29, 2010
at 03:39 AM

@ JGibson, if the horizontal ridges are just on your thumbs, it could be trauma. Acids such as vinegar are sometimes used as exfoliants ( http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art40156.asp ), so vinegar could cause peeling of skin or nails.

C8ff2dd43450e3ab1b1d06b9baf3cb30

(98)

on March 29, 2010
at 12:49 AM

Mostly it's vertical ridges, but my thumbs have horizontal lumps across them. It looks like what people refer to as trauma, and lately some of my nails have started peeling. At work, I do most of my cleaning w/vinegar and water. Could the acidity of the vinegar be causing this? I've been using coconut oil on my hands, I'll pay some extra attention to my cuticles.

F910318b9aa27b91bcf7881f39b9eabe

(1164)

on April 20, 2011
at 08:07 PM

I got a horizontal ridge right about the time i started paleo. Probably due to the adjustment and cleansing my body was going through...

3
9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on March 28, 2010
at 02:06 PM

I would suggest making some high quality bone stock. I hate to suggest it for everything, but it has some many minerals and other healthy factors like gelatin that it is a little magical. All I know is that my fingernails look great and ever since I started doing more bones, they grow like crazy!

33b6c516904a967ef8ecb30f1dbd8cf2

(7073)

on March 28, 2010
at 05:13 PM

I agree, hair gets better conditioned too.

A3bb2c70384b0664a933b45739bac32c

(951)

on March 29, 2010
at 09:03 PM

A good bone stock helps, because it is full of collagen. It comes from when the cartilage and tendon melt into gelatin, and in the case of chicken stock it can come from the skin as well. This is what gives the stock it's body and makes it gel when cold

C8ff2dd43450e3ab1b1d06b9baf3cb30

(98)

on March 29, 2010
at 12:49 AM

I've been meaning to do just that for cooking reasons. Guess I have another reason.

1
691f120a3e7a1a036845d105d86c99a3

(3641)

on March 28, 2010
at 10:02 PM

Perhaps gluten intolerance was partly at fault for your nail issues, and the avoidance of grain strengthening your nails because you are getting access to nutrients you couldn't get before.

I've read that nail ridges of the horizontal variety can be caused by malnutrition. I've had them on some of my toenails forever. Recently I found out I've had celiac and related intestinal malabsorption which means I haven't been absorbing a lot of the nutrients from my food. I've been doing paleo hardcore since I found out but it takes a while for celiac to heal and then even longer for toenails to grow. Will let you know if it ever goes away.

1
8fe757cdfec5e45d6c8d2e71380355fc

on March 28, 2010
at 06:49 PM

stephan, at whole health source, made some comments about vitamin k2 strengthening his fingernails [seconded by a commenter], no mechanism specified.

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11488)

on March 28, 2010
at 07:36 PM

Vitamin K2 is involved with calcium metabolism. The calcium content of nails decreases with age: http://www.springerlink.com/content/x583r3857572v202/ . Just speculating here, perhaps K2 supplements help prevent or delay this decrease in nail calcium.

C8ff2dd43450e3ab1b1d06b9baf3cb30

(98)

on March 29, 2010
at 01:00 AM

Well, I'm 33, I would hope that it's not age yet. :/ I do take a K2 supplement.

0
Fa4cb79bbc1fae16acbd1d459e92b112

on August 20, 2011
at 10:22 AM

I Think following links will help to remove Fingernail ridges.

http://www.ridgesinfingernails.org/

0
43c4473fda7e6f6bae82680a6a2333ef

on April 20, 2011
at 07:58 PM

Here are some helpful links:

http://www.normanallan.com/Med/askdr/finger.html

http://www.drlera.com/health_beauty/nails/nails_problems.htm

http://tcmdiscovery.com/2007/7-24/2007724112815.html

...they have a different take on verticle ridges...but you can see which more applies to you.

0
04293f705870e1837b8670d3c1cd5f67

on April 20, 2011
at 04:41 PM

I have vertical ridges. I had these before paleo and now they are still there. I don't use gloves or anything while cleaning. I eat homemade bone broth, eat a clean diet, for over a year now. All my systems seem to be working perfectly. So, I think I have ridges due to age because I didn't have them when I was younger. And I never had strong nails, still don't or thick hair. I have perfect skin otherwise.

I wish this would change. I will check into the k2 see if that helps.

Answer Question


Get FREE instant access to our
Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!