Similar to building a house, creating beautiful nail art starts with a good foundation. "Like all parts of the body, healthy and beautiful nails are the result of good nutrition," says Marisa Moore, registered dietitian and spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association. "Following a balanced diet with a variety of fruits, veggies, whole grains, lean protein, healthy fats and low-fat dairy is the best way to ensure nail growth and health."
While overall good nutrition contributes to health, there are some key areas of your diet to watch carefully when looking to promote healthy nails. "Protein and iron, a mineral, are important to nail health," says Joanne Larsen, registered and licensed dietitian and founder of Ask the Dietitian.
For protein sources, you can eat meat, poultry, fish and other sources such as soy, while iron can be found in oysters, lentils and iron-fortified cereals.
Along with protein and iron, think about biotin. "Biotin, a water soluble B vitamin, may help strengthen nails," says Moore. Biotin can be found in foods such as eggs, broccoli and fish.