There are so many ways to assess someone’s nutrient needs- diet dairy, health history, basic screening labs, specialized nutrient labs and physical appearance. Yes, physical appearance. So get out your mirror and let’s do a quick assessment. See if you have the signs of good nutrition or show some deficiency.
These are things I look for regularly with patients in my office. These physical signs are clinical pearls I learned during school as well as some specific correlations I have made over the years in practice.
Let’s get started…
1. Brittle nails with vertical ridges: brittle nails are classic for weak digestion and specifically, if you also see vertical ridges, you know the weakest part of the digestion is poor stomach acid.
2. Brittle hair: This is complex, but if hair is not shiny and full, especially if it used to be, I am curious about B-vitamins and whether the thyroid gland is functioning well.
3. Thinning eyebrows: when this happens to the outside of †he brows, it is very specific for thyroid issues.
4. White spots on nails: look closely, this is a classic zinc deficiency and since zinc is a co-factor in about 50 different brain neurotransmitter pathways, it is pretty important.
5. Dark circles under eyes (especially if they are also puffy): food allergies / sensitivities or sluggish liver.
6. Thick, white coating on tongue: you are having to many carbohydrate rich foods and not processing them very well.
7. Eyes: when you pull down the bottom eyelashes, you should see nice, healthy pink tissue–if it looks too pale, you may be getting enough iron or not absorbing it well. *tongue should also be a nice healthy, pink color (not pale).
8. Excessive ear wax: You likely do not have enough essential fatty acids in the diet.
9. ANY skin issues: Acne, eczema, dry skin, psoriasis – all have some sort of toxicity/food sensitivity component (in my opinion). The skin is the largest organ of detoxification.
10. Small bumps on the back of your arms: Not enough essential fatty acids in the diet or a Vitamin A deficiency.
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