What is iron deficiency?
Iron deficiency is a condition that lacks iron in your body. Iron contains in all cells of your body. And it needs to several functions of your body. It helps you to carry oxygen in the tissues of the lungs.
Iron deficiency is caused by many reasons. Today we will broadly discuss iron deficiency, Symptoms of iron deficiency, causes of iron deficiency, effects of iron deficiency, foods for iron deficiency, and lots of other things about iron deficiency.
The average amount of iron in the body of men is approximately 3.8g and 2.3g in women.
When it goes down we can say that person has an iron deficiency. It is also a deadly disease when you don’t take care of it. It causes because many reasons like I said before.
So, we are going to take a look at the main causes of iron deficiency.
Causes Of Iron Deficiency
There have a lot of causes of iron deficiency. I will first list out it below and broadly discuss it after that.
- Parasitic Infections
- Lack of blood
- Uses of drugs
- Malabsorption Syndromes
- Inadequate Intake Of Foods
- Lack of ability to absorb iron
Parasitic Infections are one of the causes of iron deficiency. Lack of hygiene is the way that parasitic come to your body.
If you are a person who has contact with pets very close then, the chances of parasitic Infection are high. Because pets like dogs and cats include various types of parasites and make sure the foods that you eat are well cleaned and cooked.
So take care about parasitic Infections otherwise it leads to iron deficiency.
Inflammation is another cause of the iron deficiency. Inflammation causes an increase in the number of hepcidin.
Hepcidin is one of the hormones that regulate iron. It will prevent the absorption of iron from food. It also causes various deadly diseases.
So inflammation causes the increase in hepcidin and, it will increase your chances of iron deficiency.
Lack of blood
Lack of blood in your body is one of the main causes of iron deficiency. Blood levels in your body can drop for many reasons. Blood is important to your body.
Excess loss of blood will kill you. Provide oxygen to all cells of your body and remove the carbon dioxide are one of the main function of blood.
Lose blood from your body when you donate. Approximately 10% of your total blood will lose when you donate.
Other types of blood loss are menstrual bleeding, internal bleeding like ulcerative colitis, and another external bleeding. Any type of loss in blood will lead to iron deficiency.
Uses of drugs
Some medications lead you to iron deficiency. Antacids, Proton pump inhibitors are some of them. These types of drugs have stopped the absorption of iron.
So if you are using any of these drugs, then talk to your doctor more about it.
Malabsorption is a condition that abnormality in the absorption of food nutrients across the gastrointestinal tract. Proper absorption is important.
We are eating lots of foods every day but; it is a waste when it does not absorb properly. Proper absorption is important to get all nutrients of any food you eat.
So abnormality in absorption affects iron. It will lead to Iron Deficiency.
Inadequate Intake Of Foods
Foods that you eat have a big role in iron deficiency. A healthy man above 18 needs approximately 8.7mg per day and, women above 19 need 14.8mg a day.
You can achieve this simply by eating lots of iron-rich foods. Sometimes people don’t care about what they are eating. It will make them sick.
Except for eating anything else, you try to eat more nutritious foods that contain more iron. We will discuss in detail the list of the best iron-rich foods later.
Lack of ability to absorb iron
We discussed the absorption of nutrients above. Like that, the ability to absorb nutrients is an important thing. It depends upon you.
In the case of iron, the main cause of lack of absorption is ulcerative colitis or ulcerative colitis anemia. Diseases like ulcerative colitis anemia Will cause the inability to absorb iron.
So if you have diseases like ulcerative colitis, then you need to treat that first. Otherwise, you can’t properly absorb iron or other nutrients, and also it will cause iron deficiency.
Iron deficiency connected with pregnancy is related to blood loss when childbirth. We talked about the loss of blood and iron deficiency before.
This is also connected with that. The chances of iron deficiency after pregnancy is high.
Symptoms Of Iron Deficiency
Iron deficiency has many symptoms but the problem they are common symptoms and signs of many other diseases. So it is difficult to confirm.
But they all are symptoms of iron. So if you face any of these symptoms consult your doctor and confirm is it a sign of iron deficiency or not.
- Hair loss
- Feeling Irritability
- Difficulty of breath
- Grooved Finger Nails
- Thinned hair
- Decrease immunity power
Hair loss is one of the common symptoms of iron deficiency. Oxygen is needed for every function of your body. It is also important to hair growth.
But lack of iron decreases the level of hemoglobin in your blood. Hemoglobin is one of the proteins that help to spread oxygen to every cell of your body.
So lack of hemoglobins affects your hair growth very badly. So if you are experiencing abnormal hair loss, then check if you have an iron deficiency.
Fatigue is also a common symptom of many diseases but, it is a symptom of iron deficiency. Fatigue means feeling always weak and tired and low energy.
Not these always the symptom of iron deficiency it will have if you do not get good sleep. So if you feel fatigued, make sure it is not the symptom of iron deficiency.
Irritability is one of the symptoms of iron deficiency. If you experiencing irritability without any cause, then it may be a symptom of iron deficiency. So make sure is it or not.
Dizziness is a common symptom of many medical conditions. Studies show that dizziness is one of the common diseases that affect 20 to 30% of persons. So dizziness also a symptom of iron deficiency.
Tiredness is another symptom of iron deficiency. When iron very low in your body, you always feel more tired. If you feel every time tired check your iron level.
Difficulty of breath
Difficulty in breathing is a sign of iron deficiency. It is caused by the deficiency of hemoglobin in your blood vessels. The deficiency in hemoglobin leads to a lack of oxygen.
So iron deficiency decreases the level of oxygen in your body and, you feel difficulty in breathing.
Paleness is one of the signs that your body shows you have very low iron. The major part of your body that showing paleness is the face and nails.
So if you see this sign, then you need to consult a doctor fast as possible.
Grooved Finger Nails
A grooved fingernail is a symptom of iron deficiency like paleness in nails. It is also a major symptom of iron deficiency. You need to treat as fast as possible when seeing this sign.
We talked about hair loss above as a symptom of iron deficiency like that thinned hair is also a symptom of iron deficiency. If you see the strength of your hair is very low, then it may be a symptom of iron deficiency.
Decrease immunity power
Immunity power is everything. If you don’t have immunity power or if your immunity power is very low, then Your body will be the center of diseases.
One of the dangerous symptoms of iron deficiency is low immunity power. If you have a lack of immunity you will experience adequate diseases like a fever.
So you need to treat iron deficiency fast as possible.
The above are the main symptoms of iron deficiency. So you need to check if you have any of these symptoms. And you need to know one thing that the symptoms mentioned above not only the Symptoms of iron deficiency.
It is also a common symptom of many other diseases. So you need to consult a doctor and make sure if you have or haven’t an iron deficiency.
There are few ways have to gain iron in your body. One of the simple and effective ways is eating iron-rich foods. There are have a lot of foods that give you high iron.
Below are some of the best and healthy foods that rich in iron.
Food For Iron Deficiency
Here are the best 25 iron-rich foods that will help you to gain more iron into your body and also overcome iron deficiency.
- Pumpkin seeds
- Red meat
- Dry fruits
- Dark chocolate
- Turmeric powder
- Brown rice
Tofu is one the best Iron-rich food that you can eat. You will get 5.4mg of iron from 100gm of tofu. It also contains 8g high-quality Protine. It contains lots of amino acids so; it is the best aid for heart diseases. So tofu is the first food that helps you to gain iron.
2- Pumpkin seeds
100gm of pumpkin seeds contains 3.3mg iron. Pumpkin seeds are also a protein-rich food. It contains 19g Protine in 100gm of pumpkin seeds. It also helps you to improve your heart health and lower blood sugar. So try to include pumpkin seeds in your diet.
Spinach is one of the sources of vitamins and minerals. 100g of raw spinach contains 2.7 mg of iron. It is also a potassium-rich food. 100gm of spinach contains 167mg of potassium. So spinach is another food that helps you to overcome iron deficiency.
4- Red meat
100gm of red meat contains 2.7mg of iron. Red meat also a great source of several vitamins like vitamin B12 and vitamin B6. But eating red meat regularly; may increase the chances of diabetes. So if you are a diabetes patient, either you avoid consuming it or reduce its use.
Broccoli is another source of iron. 100gm of broccoli contains 0.7mg of iron. And it is also fat-free so, you can include this in your weight loss diet. It also helps you lower blood cholesterol and blood sugar level.
Fishes are rich in iron. Sardine is the best iron-rich fish in the world. It contains 2.48mg iron in 100gm. Tuna, haddock, and mackerel are also rich in iron. And these fishes are high in protein so, they will give you lots of protein with high iron.
Quinoa is another iron-rich food. 100gm of quinoa contains 2.8g of iron. It is also one of the best aid for control blood sugar. So if you are a diabetic patient, then this is the best iron-rich food for you.
8- Dry fruits
All types of dry fruits are rich in iron and several vitamins. Dried grapes are a more familiar type of dry fruit for us. 100gm of dry grapes gives you 1.9mg iron. Dry grapes also very helpful to lose weight. So try to eat some dry grapes daily.
9- Dark chocolate
Dark chocolate is another food that helps you to overcome iron deficiency. Dark chocolate is one of the high iron contain food in this list. 100gm dark chocolate contains approximately 14mg of iron.
So it’s amazing. Anyway dark chocolate is food that every people like to eat. So by eating dark chocolates, you can enjoy them and fulfill your iron level.
Nuts are like a storehouse of lots of health benefits. Nuts are high-calorie foods. You will get above 600 calories per 100gm nuts. So it will help you in your healthy weight gain diet.
You will get 2.6mg of iron from 100gm of nuts. Almonds, Brazil nuts, Cashew nuts, and peanuts are some of the best nuts you can eat.
The ability to lower cholesterol and reducing inflammation is one of the key benefits of eating nuts.
Tomatoes are the best low-fat high potassium food. It contains 237mg potassium per 100gm. And 100gm of tomatoes come with 0.3mg of iron.
It’s not too much but, it is also an iron food that everyone easily gets. And tomatoes are food that every day we use in our recipes.
The main benefits of tomatoes are it is an antioxidant food and it will protect your heart very well.
Mushroom is another best food that protects your heart. 100gm of mushroom comes with 0.5mg iron. It is also a low-calorie food with high-quality protein.
So, you can include mushroom in your weight loss diet without any worry.
Oats is one of the food that every physician recommend for weight loss because it is rich in good fiber. You will get 3.4mg of iron from a cup of cooked oats.
And oats are a great source of fiber, magnesium, and zinc, etc. Eating oats in breakfast is better than eating lunch or dinner.
Olives are high in iron. You will get 4mg iron from 100gm of olive. You can eat olive rawly or as oil. You can replace other types of oil with olive.
Olives give you a lot of health benefits both mentally and physically. You can eat olive every day without any worry. So olive is another food that will help you to overcome iron deficiency.
Eggs are another iron-rich food that you can eat every day. One large egg comes with 0.6mg of iron. So you can simply eat 3 to 4 eggs per day.
Eggs also master in high-quality protein. So you will get high-quality protein to build your body or muscle. But eating lots of egg yolk not suitable for people who have high cholesterol levels.
So make sure your cholesterol levels are normal.
Beans are one of the iron-rich food that high calorie and high protein. 100gm of beans contains 347 calories and 21gm of high-quality protein.
Beans are also one of the best potassium-rich food. It contains 1393mg potassium per 100gm. As well as 28% of 100gm beans are iron, it is equal to 5.1mg.
So beans are the storehouse of various nutrients. And it is also a very affordable one.
Lentils are another iron-rich food that you can eat every day. 100gm of boiled lentils contains 3.3mg of pure iron. Eating lentils protect your heart by lowering blood pressure.
So try to include lentils in your daily diet and experience the healthy difference in you.
18- Turmeric powder
Many peoples know the benefits of Turmeric powder. Yes, turmeric powder is natural medicine. It is capable of destroying many types of germs and viruses in your body.
Turmeric helps to improve your absorption of nutrients like iron. Turmeric powder is a food that helps you to gain more absorption ability naturally.
Beets are another iron-rich food. 100gm of beets give you 0.8mg of high-quality iron. Beet is one of the best food that helps to improve your brain function.
It also helps to increase blood in your body. So include beets in your diet.
Watermelon is one of the fruits that contain iron. 100gm of watermelon comes with 0.2mg of iron. You can eat watermelon rawly or you can drink juice as well.
Watermelon help to hydrate your body. It also contains 112mg of potassium. So it will help you to lower blood pressure and protect from various cardiovascular disease like stroke.
Apple is another food that gives you iron. You will get 0.1mg iron from 100gm of apple. Apple gives you so many health benefits such as Weight Loss, heart health, lower diabetes, prevent some type of cancers, etc.
So eating an apple every day is one best healthy habits for you.
Bananas are another fruit that will help you to overcome iron deficiency. You will get 0.3mg iron from 100gm of bananas. You can simply eat more bananas a day.
It will also help to boost your energy level. So you can eat it as a pre-workout or post-workout snack.
23- Brown rice
Brown rice is another iron-rich food that you can eat every day. You can simply replace white rice and gain more iron that your body needs. 100gm of brown rice gives you 0.4mg of iron.
One of the main benefits of eating brown rice is the reduction of heart diseases.
Orange is another tasty fruit that will help you to overcome iron deficiency. You will get 0.1mg of iron from one orange.
It is very popular in vitamin C fruits. Because; the vitamin C it contains will improve your heart health and immunity power.
Lemon is the last iron-rich food on my list. A lemon is the same as an orange. It is fully loaded with vitamin C and minerals. But it little higher than orange in the case of iron. You will get 0.6mg of iron from a 100gm lemon.
So above is the comprehensive list of iron-rich foods. The Foods included vegetables, fruits, and some snacks. So try to include the foods mentioned above as you can in your daily diet and run away from iron deficiency.
Iron deficiency hair loss
So, many people around us suffering from hair loss. Many of them don’t know the reason for it. Maybe it happens because of iron deficiency.
Iron deficiency leads you to hair loss. Hair loss is normal but, this is a problem when the fallen hair does not come back later. Sometimes the reason for this happen is; iron deficiency.
Hair needs oxygen as other parts of our body. The oxygen for hair will interpret when your iron level is low.
Lack of iron in your body decreases the production of hemoglobin in your body. Hemoglobin is the hormones that carrying or providing oxygen to every part of your body.
The deficiency of hemoglobin interferes with the supply of oxygen needed for hair growth and production. So if you are facing inadequate hair loss or any other hair-related problems, then you need to check your iron level.
Iron deficiency hair thinning
Hair thinning is another common hair problem related to iron deficiency. The reason this happens is the same as hair loss. Lack of hemoglobin makes your hair very thin and strengthless.
It will double the chances of break hair and hair loss as well. You can solve this problem by reproducing more iron into your body.
You can do this by eating lots of iron-rich foods and vitamin C foods as well. Sometimes you need to take some medications so, consult your doctor and take action.
Iron deficiency in pregnancy
Iron deficiency during pregnancy is more dangerous than others. Because; it will not only affect the mother but also the unborn child.
Most of the iron deficiency problems during pregnancy lead to iron deficiency anemia. Anemia is the condition that decreased the number of red blood cells in your blood vessels.
Lack of iron leads to a reduction of hemoglobins and it will reach iron deficiency anemia. The sign or symptoms of iron deficiency in pregnancy are the same as general iron deficiency.
Iron deficiency in babies
Iron deficiency in babies is common. It commonly sees in age below 2. The main reason for iron deficiency in babies is lack of nutrition. Babies need iron for healthy growth.
The best and easy way to fulfill this by giving them breast milk. You need to give breast milk for at least 2 years. If you don’t do this, then the chances of iron deficiency in babies will increase.
How to overcome iron deficiency
So you have the all information about iron deficiency including, causes of iron deficiency, symptoms of iron deficiency, foods that help to lower iron deficiency, etc.
So next, you need to know how to overcome iron deficiency. The best and simple way to overcome iron deficiency is by changing your diet.
The bad eating habits lead most of the peoples to iron deficiency. So firstly you need to take action in it. I already gave you a comprehensive list of iron-rich foods above.
So next is your turn. You need to include that food into your diet.
The next way is medication. In many cases, we can cure iron deficiency by controlling diet. But if it doesn’t work for you, then the next step is medication.
You need to consult a doctor and take the medications he or she says. Iron deficiency is completely curable if you take care of it.
Give your experiences and suggestions about iron deficiency and also about this article. If you think this helps, don’t forget to share this with your friends and family.