Iron is an essential mineral needed by all human beings. Though most people get their required dose of iron by consuming foods high in iron, there are thousands of people who need to take the help of iron supplements at some point of time in their lives due to several reasons. Here you can have a look at 10 reasons why you might need iron supplements like Ironsmart and decide whether you need to talk about it with your doctor or not.
- Iron Deficiency Anemia
This is the most common type of anemia in the United States of America that occurs when your red blood cells don’t have enough iron and hence cannot provide oxygen to tissues and cells. The symptoms of this condition include fatigue, dizziness, weakness, problems with concentrating, etc. If you have this anemia, you should be worried and consider iron supplements as iron deficiency anemia has been linked with cancer.
Women who menstruate need to keep their iron intake sufficient as the loss of blood during periods, especially if it’s heavy or prolonged can result in iron deficiency. This is among the key reasons why women have high anemia rates as compared to men.
When a woman is pregnant, she needs to increase her iron intake from about 18 milligrams to 27 milligrams a day to ensure that oxygen is supplied to the baby’s body as well. You also need more iron to ensure that you have a healthy immune system.
Women who are nursing also need adequate levels of iron to ensure that they or their babies don’t suffer from iron deficiency. As women lose a lot of blood during childbirth, they need to up their consumption of iron as soon as they can after the birthing. Nursing mothers should also start providing solid foods to babies when they turn 6 months old to ensure that they don’t suffer from iron deficiency.
- Blood Loss
People who suffer blood loss due to their habit of donating blood or gastrointestinal bleeding must keep an eye on their iron levels. If they get too low, people should stop donating blood for a few months after having a chat with their doctors. People should take iron supplements to compensate for gastrointestinal bleeding as this is among the topmost solutions they have to avoid a deficiency.
- Exercising Hard
Men and women who exercise too hard to change their body shape, stay fit or are professional athletes might also need iron supplements. According to researchers, one might need more red blood cells to carry oxygen if one needs to keep exercising over a period.
If you are on medications like tetracycline, ranitidine, quinolones, colestipol, angiotensin, etc., you should talk to your GP about iron deficiency as these medications can potentially harm your body’s ability to absorb iron. Remember, never make the mistake of stopping these medications without the supervision of a doctor as it may harm your health.
People who are on kidney dialysis need extra iron because if your kidneys don’t work well, they may not produce erythropoietin hormone that instructs your body to create more red blood cells. Dialysis diets also limit the iron intake. If your dietician has asked for the same, you better ask about supplements from him/her.
In case you have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, also known as ADHD, you might be vulnerable to iron deficiency, according to a research conducted in 2014. This research also highlighted that people with ADHD also have low levels of ferritin (that stores iron inside your cells so that it can be used later).
- ACE Inhibitor Associated Cough
Patients who suffer from conditions like type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure or mild kidney disease are often prescribed ACE inhibitors. The use of these ACE inhibitors frequently leads to a dry cough. If you want to reduce these kinds of dry coughs, you must consider iron supplements as researchers have found increased iron levels boost nitric acid in the blood that reduces ACE inhibitor-associated coughs.
In essence, it can be said that iron supplements are essential to staying away from iron deficiency. But, before you start taking these supplements, be sure to ask your doctor about when to have them, how to have them and how much is too much. Never take these supplements beyond the prescribed limits or pre-decided weeks or months as it might do more harm than good, especially for medically unfit people and kids.