vitamins deficiency symptoms

Danger of iron deficiency

Iron qualifies as a trace mineral. We need iron to carry oxygen in our blood and also to make other enzymes.
Every one of our red blood cells contains protein hemoglobin. Four atoms of iron are attached to every hemoglobin molecule. Iron is used to transport and store oxygen in blood and to store oxygen in muscles.
Iron also produces hemoglobin and myoglobin – proteins involved in the transport and storage of oxygen – and amino acids. It also need for cellular energy production, produces enzymes that have antioxidant effects, supports DNA synthesis and immune function

Herbal Iron Multi-Vitamin Supplement 17 fl oz: K
Iron deficiency is common. At risk are women with heavy menstrual bleeding and during pregnancy (increased needs for baby), vegetarians, and those with malabsorption syndromes (celiac disease), bleeding ulcers, copper deficiency, and in surgery.

Deficiency of iron does not immediately cause iron deficiency anemia.
Even before signs of anemia occur, signs of apathy and fatigue may be apparent. Some children may be incorrectly diagnosed with attention deficit disorders when they are actually suffering from iron depletion.
After iron stores are depleted, blood cells begin to have less hemoglobin and the blood cells start to become smaller than usual. With less hemoglobin than needed, oxygen delivery to the cells becomes inadequate, especially during exertion.
There are other causes of anemia, such as deficiency of vitamin B12 or folate.
Symptoms of iron deficiency anemia are usually a result of inadequate oxygen delivery. Symptoms include fatigue, rapid heart rate, reduced work capacity, and rapid breathing upon exertion.

Iron deficiency can also limit the ability to maintain body temperature in cold conditions. Both hemoglobin in blood and myoglobin in muscles become depleted.

Lack of iron may also limit the creation of energy in the electron transport chain. This may lead to more anaerobic energy production resulting in excess lactic acid and fatigue.

Severe iron deficiency anemia can result in spoon-shaped, brittle nails, taste bud atrophy, and mouth sores.

Iron supplements can bind to and reduce absorption and efficacy of levodopa, levothyroxine, methyldopa, quinolones, tetracyclines, bisphosphonates, and zinc and calcium supplements.

To avoid this, separate intake of iron supplements from these products by two hours.

Vitamin C-rich foods and supplements enhance the absorption of nonheme iron (form of iron found primarily in plants).
A multivitamin/mineral complex providing the RDA is recommended for most premenopausal and pregnant women and those at risk of deficiency.

Food Sources

Iron is found in food in two types: heme iron and non-heme iron.
Rich sources of heme iron include organ meats, lean beef, chicken, oysters, and pork.
Good sources of nonheme iron are whole grains, peas, beans, spinach, nuts, and blackstrap (unrefined) molasses.

One of the best sources of iron is cream of wheat cereal. It contains over 7 mg in six ounces. Many cold breakfast cereals such as bran flakes also have plenty of iron, both naturally and from added supplements.

Iron side effects and toxicity

Overdose can be fatal.
Children are at risk of accidental overdose from products containing iron.
Iron supplements, especially potent iron supplements meant for pregnant women, should be kept out of the reach of children.
There has been some association between the intake of heme iron and the risk of heart attacks.

Liquid iron supplements can even stain teeth.
Symptoms of iron overdose of iron: nausea, vomiting, and constipation.

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