What the Lunula of Your Nails Says about Your Health

October 11, 2018
Do you know what healthy nails look like? Learn about how the Lunula of your nails can tell you important information about your health!

Believe it or not, your fingernails can tell you a lot about your health. The size and appearance of your lunula, the crescent-shaped area at the base of your fingernail, may indicate problems, even if you don’t notice any other symptoms. If you pay attention how your nails look, you might be able to identify health issues before they become more serious. 

What the lunula should look like on each finger

Pinky finger

lunula on fingernails
The lunula on your pinky finger should be nearly invisible or non-existent. It is related to the function of your kidneys, small intestine, and heart.

  • If you notice that it is larger than normal, pay attention – you could have high blood pressure.

Ring finger

The lunula on your ring finger is related to your reproductive and lymphatic systems.

  • If it’s barely visible, it might indicate a metabolic problem.

Middle finger

The lunula on your middle finger could be related to your brain or cardiovascular system.

  • If you can’t see the lunula on this finger, it could indicate a potential issue with your blood vessels or high blood pressure.

Index finger

If your index finger lunula is completely or nearly gone, you could have issues in your intestine or pancreas. It could also be a chronic upper respiratory disease.

Read more: Cleanse Your Pancreas with These 5 Natural Remedies


woman painting fingernails

This lunula is related to the function of your lungs and spleen.

It’s the largest of the five and should take up no more than 25% of the entire length of your nail bed.

  • If it is smaller, it could be due to tobacco use.
  • If it’s larger than that, it may be because of high blood pressure.

Is it large?

Unsure whether your lunula is large or small? Just remember that a lunula is considered large when it takes up a third of your entire nail.

This could indicate problems with your cardiovascular system, changes in heart rate, or low blood pressure. People who do heavy physical activity for work or are under a lot of stress can also have large lunulae.

You might like: How to Improve Your Diet to Treat Low Blood Pressure

Is it small?

A lunula small if you can’t see it at all, or it barely extends beyond the surface of the cuticle.

This could indicate low blood pressure or circulatory problems, as well as a weak immune system, slow metabolism, and an iron or vitamin B12 deficiency.

If you notice that your lunulae are clearly isolated with a transversal line to the rest of the nail, you could be having blood sugar problems or developing diabetes.

Not visible

Keep in mind that sometimes you might not be able to see your lunulae, but it doesn’t mean they’re not there. If it has truly disappeared, however, it could be a problem with your circulation or thyroid, a lack of vitamin B12, or an iron deficiency.

Color changes

discolored lunulae
Another problem you might run into is when your lunulae change color. If you notice that they are greyish instead of the normal white, it could indicate that you need some rest.

This shade can also be related to problems with digestion and a difficulty absorbing nutrients.

A white lunula indicates that everything is in order, as this is the natural color. Remember that your lunula should be several shades lighter than your skin tone.

If your lunula is more violet in color, it could be a sign of poor circulation and a lack of oxygen in your organs and tissues. Pink or red may indicate low levels of physical activity and lung problems.

Finally, if you notice that your lunula are black, this is a symptom of heavy metal contamination. If this occurs, see a doctor immediately.

  • Nail manifestations in systemic diseases medigraphic.com/pdfs/cosmetica/dcm-2011/dcm112h.pdf
  • Fawcett RS, Linford S, Stulberg DL. “Nail abnormalities: Clues to systemic disease”. Am Fam Physician 2004; 69: 1417-1424.
  • Daniel CR 3d, Osment LS. “Nail pigmentation abnormalities. Their importance and proper examination”. Cutis 1982; 30: 348-360.