Brittle nails
What causes brittle nails and how do you treat it?

What causes brittle nails?

  • Certain deficiencies, such as iron, calcium, vitamin A and thyroid hormone can cause brittle nails. Your GP can assess if there is a treatable medical cause for this, with some basic questions and blood tests.

Tips to combat brittle nails

  • A diet rich in calcium (dairy, almonds, carrot juice, sardines, salmon, dark green leafy vegetables), iron (red meat, green leafy vegetables, eggs, fish, liver) and vitamin A (fruit and green, red and yellow vegetables) will help, together with a 3-month course of iron supplementation.
  • Reducing salt, vinegar and citrus fruits may also be beneficial.
  • Basic moisturising of the nails will help in most cases, particularly in the dry winter months.

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