Fingernails could offer hints at zinc deficiency

Reader’s Question: I’ve been getting white spots on my fingernails for months now. It doesn’t really bother me, and you have to look kind of close to see them. But I’m curious about what may be causing the spots and whether it’s something I need to look into.

Dr. Glenn Rothfeld: First off, you’re right to be concerned about any changes in physical appearance, especially as they pertain to your skin, nails, and hair. Often these changes are “canaries in the coal mine,” pointing to much more serious issues.

White spots on the fingernails can indicate a zinc deficiency in your body – or problems with the enzymes that allow you to properly absorb zinc.

I’m sure you’ve probably heard that foods like oysters, pumpkin seeds, and even dark chocolate are good sources of zinc. But the fact is, if you’re running a zinc deficiency, it’s going to be hard to get enough through diet alone.

The good news is that you can pick up zinc supplements just about anywhere, usually for well under £10 for 30 capsules.

Want me to answer your question next? Drop me a line at

Wishing you the best of health,

Dr. Glenn S. Rothfeld
Nutrition & Healing
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