Iron is very important in our bodies as it helps us get enough oxygen throughout our body. The body uses iron to make hemoglobin, which is a part of red blood cells. Without enough iron, our bodies will make fewer and smaller red blood cells which, in turn, leads to less oxygen throughout the body. According to the USDA, 11% of people in the U.S. are deficient in iron.
What are the Symptoms of Iron Deficiency?
The symptoms of iron deficiency can be confused with many different deficiencies because of the common symptoms. Honestly, I’ve had similar symptoms just from weekend benders. Here is some of what might be experience
- Feel weak and tire out more easily
- Feel dizzy
- Be grumpy or cranky
- Have headaches
- Look very pale
- Feel short of breath
- Have trouble concentrating
How Do We Become Deficient in Iron?
There are many factors that can contribute to iron deficiency. These are some of the most common.
- Are not getting enough iron in food. This can happen in people who need a lot of iron, such as small children, teens, and pregnant women.
- Have heavy menstrual bleeding.
- Have bleeding inside your body. This bleeding may be caused by problems such as ulcers, hemorrhoids, or cancer. This bleeding can also happen with regular aspirin use. Bleeding inside the body is the most common cause of iron deficiency anemia in men and in women after menopause.
- Cannot absorb iron well in your body. This problem may occur if you have celiac disease or if you have had part of your stomach or small intestine removed.
Solutions for Iron Deficiency
Many doctors will prescribe meat and iron pills to boost the iron intake. The problem with iron in the meat is that it doesn’t fully assimilate into your body. Vitamin C is needed with the iron for the body to fully integrate the iron. There is also the problem of the stomach and intestines being lined with mucous and plaque which restricts the body from getting the nutrients that are needed from our foods.
My favorite iron rich foods that can be absorbed well are as follows:
- Kale – per calorie, has more iron than beef
- Collard Greens
- Soaked Grains
- Blackstrap Molasses
Are you Lacking Iron?
I recently discovered that I had less than adequate iron in my body. I found that he easiest way to tell if iron is something that you are lacking is to add a little more iron into your diet. Adding dark green smoothies to your day alone will probably do the trick. Not only will that up your iron intake, but will also clean up a lot of other troubles. If fatigue is one of the things that you’re feeling, this will also do wonders for your energy as well as help cut down a lot of the inflammation in your muscles and your cells.
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