Nutritional Supplements: Iron Replacement Supplements

 In Health, Wellness

Of the many minerals that are important to your long-term wellness, iron is one of the most important; it is needed for your body to produce red blood cells; is critical to the production of healthy tissue and muscle development; supports metabolism; and the synthesis of certain hormones. If you’ve been told you’re “anemic”, you are suffering from an iron deficiency. While most of us take in all the iron we need from our diets, some must use nutritional supplements such as an iron replacement supplement to meet the needs of their bodies.

However, iron is a tricky mineral for your body to absorb. Especially as a supplement, you must take it in the right form or it will not work. Iron is also difficult to digest, and doesn’t play well with others; i.e., it will block calcium and other mineral absorption. You should not take an iron supplement in your multivitamin – because it will block the absorption of other minerals you’re taking.

Iron supplementation works best when taken with Vitamin C – so, should be taken at a different time of day from other vitamins, except Vitamin C.

An iron deficiency may lead to unusual tiredness, shortness of breath, a decrease in physical performance, and learning problems in both children and adults. It may also increase your chance of getting an infection.

According to MayoClinic.org, there are a number of conditions that may increase your need for iron or iron supplements:

  • Bleeding problems
  • Burns
  • Hemodialysis
  • Intestinal diseases
  • Stomach problems
  • Stomach removal
  • Use of medicines to increase your red blood cell count

In addition, infants, especially those receiving breast milk or low-iron formulas, may need additional iron.

Risks of Iron Supplements

Caution: There are risks involved with iron supplementation that should be taken into account. Overuse of iron supplements has been liked to a higher risk of heart attack, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol levels. For more on the risks of using too much iron, read this article from NaturalNews.com.

For more detailed information on iron replacement supplements, as well as recommended iron intakes for all age groups, visit the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of Dietary Supplements Page.

As with all nutritional supplements you should consult with your primary care physician before you decide to use iron replacement supplements.

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