Irritability, hair loss and 3 more unexpected effects of iron deficiency in the body
“Anemia”, “pale numbness”, “chastity” … As soon as they did not call iron deficiency during the existence of mankind. Why so much attention is paid to the level of this trace element? How its deficiency affects health and why it is important for you to check your level of iron – the answers to these and other questions in the material.Iron plays a significant role in the body: it participates in cell growth, blood formation, tissue respiration, energy and cholesterol metabolism, affects the activity of the endocrine and immune systems, is an integral part of enzymes, coenzymes, proteins.
With his participation, water-soluble vitamins are absorbed. With it, the liver performs detoxification
Symptoms of iron deficiency
Therefore, iron deficiency can not remain imperceptible to the body and has many different manifestations:
asthenic syndrome develops (irritability, tearfulness, fatigue, chronic fatigue, weakness, worsening of mood),
headaches, dizziness, loss of attention, memory impairment,
palpitations become more frequent, extrasystoles may appear, manifested by a periodic feeling of heart failure,
appetite worsens, dysphagic phenomena (difficulty in swallowing food, feeling of “coma” in the throat, heaviness in the stomach, feeling of rapid satiety), dyspeptic phenomena, including bloating, constipation, burning and dry lips, may appear
dry and itchy skin, brittle nails, hair loss and thinning.
With iron deficiency it is impossible to reduce weight, improve the condition of the skin, hair, nails. Children with iron deficiency often lag behind in development, often catch cold. The body primarily saturates hemoglobin with iron and only then other enzymes, and therefore a normal level of hemoglobin does not indicate a sufficient amount of iron in the body.
Accordingly, it is very important to investigate correctly not only the presence of anemia (decrease in hemoglobin level), but also latent iron deficiency (when hemoglobin level is normal, but iron metabolism signals a decrease in serum iron and / or ferritin, transferrin and other indicators). Depending on the laboratory, the normal level of hemoglobin ranges from 120-140 g / l, serum iron – from 5 to 35 μmol / l, and ferritin from 60 to 150 μg / l. When identifying iron deficiency requires a full examination by a specialist in order to identify the causes of loss or non-absorption of iron by the body. It is also important to take into account the levels of magnesium, zinc, calcium, chromium, phosphates in the body. These and other trace elements negatively affect iron metabolism. Without taking into account the features can not fully restore iron deficiency.
Sources of iron
The body can get iron from food, more actively from animal products, because there it is in the form of myoglobin and blood hemoglobin, which contributes to a simpler and faster assimilation. Coming from plant foods, iron must undergo a series of transformations. At the same time for its assimilation certain components are required, for example, vitamin C.
Of animal products, large quantities of iron are found in red meat (meat of turkey, pork, lamb, rabbit, beef), beef liver, tongue, egg yolk, and in smaller quantities in fish and dairy products.
Of the vegetable products, the leader in iron content is raspberry. They are also rich in legumes (beans, peas, lentils), sea kale, dried apricots, millet, buckwheat, some vegetables (potatoes, cabbage, pumpkin, avocados, dark green vegetables, porcini, greens), hazelnuts, berries and fruits (pomegranate , peach, apples, plum, pear, quince, fig, blackberry, wild rose). Of course, you need to consider individual food intolerance.
The daily consumption of iron varies depending on age, gender, physiological conditions:
The daily need of an adult man for iron is about 10 mg.
In women, this need is more pronounced – from 15 to 20 mg per day. This is due to physiological features, monthly blood loss. Gynecologists know how vulnerable women with adenomyosis, endometriosis, and uterine myoma are with respect to iron deficiencies. During pregnancy, the need for iron increases significantly.
During physical activities and sports, the adult body’s need for iron varies from 20–25 mg / day for cardio and team sports to 40–45 mg / day (jogging, ski sports, weightlifting). Therefore, it is important to regularly examine the level of markers of iron metabolism in the body.
Depending on the age, children need from 5 to 15 mg of iron per day.
How is it treated
In cases of normal levels of iron and the absence of chronic diseases that reduce its supply, regular consumption of foods rich in iron is often sufficient.