zig
0

Notifications

  • You're all caught up!

Can Vitamins Help With Nail Fungus?

by
author image Rica Lewis
A health-care professional for more than 10 years, Rica Lewis has obtained numerous certifications in the industry. In 2006 she began channeling her knowledge into health-related articles for print and online publications. Her work has appeared in "Metroparent Magazine," "Anew Heart Healthcare Magazine" and community newspapers. Lewis earned a diploma from LongRidge Writers Institute.
Can Vitamins Help With Nail Fungus?
Nail fungus is most common in the feet. Photo Credit Comstock/Stockbyte/Getty Images

Although vitamin deficiencies are rarely the cause of nail fungus, a diet rich in certain foods can help improve nail health and prevent microscopic fungus from invading. Use simple prevention strategies in conjunction with dietary interventions. Avoid walking barefoot because nail fungus is contagious, and keep your feet clean and dry to prevent bacterial growth. Absorbent foot powders are another tool to add to your arsenal of defenses.

Signs of Nail Fungus

Nail fungus accounts for about half of all nail disorders, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. Fungus usually affects the toenails because the warm, moist environment inside your shoes is conducive to fungal growth. If your nails become yellow, brittle and thick, you likely have a fungal infection.

Balanced Diet

Because trauma or a break in your nail allow fungus to enter, a healthy diet that nourishes and strengthens nails can be crucial to preventing fungal infections. Foods that help increase nail health include milk yogurt and cheese, which are high in calcium. When choosing fruits and vegetables, look for dark colored selections, which often contain the most antioxidants. Red grapefruit, dark leafy greens and tomatoes are good sources of an array of vitamins. The Harvard School of Public Health recommends nine servings daily of vitamin-rich fruits and vegetables, but note that potatoes don't count.

You Might Also Like

Vitamin Supplements

If a busy lifestyle keeps you from consuming a balanced diet, you might consider using vitamin supplements to fill in nutritional gaps and protect against nail fungus. Although supplements are not shown to directly treat nail fungus, they can help strengthen brittle nails, and keep you healthy in the face of infections such as nail fungus. Antioxidant vitamins, such as vitamin C, help counteract free radical damage, or damaging molecules that breakdown healthy cells and contribute to illness. Biotin, a vitamin found in trace amounts in various foods, is sometimes taken as a supplement for nail health, according to MedlinePlus.

Considerations

Inspect your nails regularly because changes in the nail often signal health problems. If you maintain a balanced diet and consume an array of vitamins daily and still notice nail discoloration and thickening, it may be time to see your doctor. In some cases, a stubborn case of nail fungus is the cause and prescription medications are necessary. In others cases, kidney disease, heart and lung conditions, diabetes or anemia are a factor.

Related Searches

LiveStrong Calorie Tracker
THE LIVESTRONG.COM MyPlate Nutrition, Workouts & Tips
GOAL
  • Gain 2 pounds per week
  • Gain 1.5 pounds per week
  • Gain 1 pound per week
  • Gain 0.5 pound per week
  • Maintain my current weight
  • Lose 0.5 pound per week
  • Lose 1 pound per week
  • Lose 1.5 pounds per week
  • Lose 2 pounds per week
GENDER
  • Female
  • Male
lbs.
ft. in.

References

Demand Media