We have all heard about the importance of heart health, brain health, and immune health. These three systems are critical to our body; so, constant reminders are warranted.
Take our skin for example — it is the largest organ we possess. What about our hair? Sure, we all love having a great hair day but its purpose reaches beyond style; it helps preserve heat and keeps us warm. Even our nails have a role to play.
These three not only provide us with a protective covering, but they also alert us when other systems in the body are out of whack. Skin-related issues, such as rashes or acne, thinning and damaged hair, and brittle nails can all be signs of vitamin deficiencies or diseases.
The good news is, there are gummies that can be used to promote and support hair, skin, and nail health.
Let’s take a look at some of the important elements — vitamins and nutrients — you should be looking for when choosing hair, skin, and nail gummies.
B vitamins are one element that should be present in gummies that seek to promote and support hair, skin, and nail health. Certain B vitamin deficiencies can present a host of issues, particularly for your skin; rashes, acne, dry skin, etc.
B vitamins actually refer to a group of vitamins; B-complex vitamins. These are considered water-soluble nutrients and are not naturally produced by our bodies. Therefore, they must be consumed in the foods we eat or through supplementation.
B-complex vitamins consist of eight, water-soluble nutrients:
- B1; thiamine
- B2; riboflavin
- B3; niacin
- B5; pantothenic acid
- B6; pyridoxine
- B7; biotin
- B9; folic acid or folate
- B12; cobalamin
B-Complex Vitamins Role in the Body
Each B vitamin has its own unique role to play in the body, but some common roles of B-complex vitamins include:
- Supports cellular function and health; e.g. growth and development.
- Promotes energy; B-complex vitamins help to convert food to energy by breaking down macronutrients (carbohydrates, proteins, and fats).
- Supports immune system health and function.
- Supports digestive, cardiovascular, and brain health.
- Aid in cholesterol and hormone production and health.
We don’t have time to get into the specific role of each, but let’s take some time to highlight two of the B-complex vitamins that have some important roles in skin, hair, and nail health.
Biotin, one of the B-complex family of vitamins, is sometimes referred to as B7 or vitamin H. It is found in many common foods: Dairy, beef, certain fish, nuts, and various vegetables and fruits.
Biotin plays a key role in energy metabolism; e.g. fat and glycogen synthesis. It also has an important role in skin, hair, and nail health. It’s lack within the body can be problematic.
In fact, biotin deficiency often presents with symptoms such as thinning hair, skin rashes (around eyes, nose, mouth), acne, psoriasis, and brittle nails. More serious symptoms may include seizures, depression, and nervous system disorders.
Biotin deficiencies are rare since most people are able to get adequate amounts in the foods they eat.
Biotin for Skin, Hair, and Nail Health
Biotin has been shown to affect a metabolic process known as fatty acid synthesis (production). Fatty acids are essential to the structural integrity and function of the skin. Since biotin supports the healthy production of fatty acids it plays a role in skin health.
Biotin supplementation has shown to be beneficial for those with fragile and brittle nails as well. One small study showed positive results in biotin supplementation for participants with brittle nails — 25% increase in nail thickness.
Its significance in hair health may be explained by B vitamins' role in amino acid production; keratin, the structural protein of hair. Although research is limited, the efficacy of biotin supplementation, alongside vitamin C and zinc, for women with thinning hair is promising.
Folate, also known as vitamin B-9 or folic acid in its synthetic form, is another important player in the complex of B vitamins. It is found in high amounts in foods such as beef liver, spinach, black-eyed peas, rice, and fortified cereals.
Some of its main roles in the body include the metabolism of vitamins and amino acids, cell and tissue growth and division, and DNA synthesis and repair. These processes contribute to overall skin health.
Folate deficiency is uncommon and is usually present with other nutrient deficiencies brought on by poor diet. Some common folate deficiency symptoms may include ulceration on the tongue and mouth and changes in skin, hair, or fingernail pigmentation.
Folate intake is especially important during pregnancy for fetal development.
Folate for Skin Health
Folate, due to its primary role in cell and tissue growth and DNA synthesis, has important implications for skin health:
- Protecting from sun damage.
- Reduces the appearance of fine lines while promoting firmer skin.
- Detoxifying the body through metabolizing antioxidants.
Other Essential Vitamins
There are other important vitamins that must also be considered when choosing gummies for skin, hair, and nail health. We will mention two: Vitamin C and D.
Vitamin C is another water-soluble vitamin — also called ascorbic acid. It is naturally present in many citrus fruits. Most are already familiar with its role in immune system health. But, it is also needed for the growth and repair of tissues and protein formation.
Vitamin C and Skin Health
Vitamin C is an antioxidant that helps protect against free radicals and oxidative stress. Its benefits for skin health include its protection against environmental stressors and its promotion of collagen synthesis (production) — a protein that promotes skin elasticity, support, and structure.
Collagen is another important ingredient that should make its way into gummies that support skin, hair, and nail health.
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin and is naturally present in many foods. Highest amounts can be found in cod liver oil, salmon, mushrooms, and dairy products.
What is unique is that vitamin D synthesis and production in the body can be triggered by UV rays from the sun when it hits the skin. In some cases, sunscreens can actually hinder this process.
Vitamin D’s primary role is in bone health, immune support, and calcium absorption. Deficiencies have been associated with a condition known as rickets and other issues like depression, fatigue, and muscle weakness.
Vitamin D and Skin Health
One of the most surprising effects that vitamin D could have in skin health is its photoprotective role, reducing photodamage — skin damage wrought by ultraviolet light.
Skin, hair, and nail health deserve their place among the rest of the body systems. Their role in overall health and wellness can be just as critical.
Thankfully, Shop Hope knows their importance. That is why it is critically important to know what you should be looking for when choosing gummies to support hair, skin, and nail health.
The few mentioned would be a great start.