If you ask any nutritionist, dietitian, or medical expert, he/she will tell you that iron is one of the most important, if not the most important, mineral in our body. Iron plays a vital role, and without iron, our body cannot function properly. The primary role of iron is to carry oxygen in the blood to every cell in the body. We learned as children that "people cannot live without water and oxygen." Most people know hair loss is closely linked to iron deficiency, but what are the other signs of iron deficiency?
We'll take a look at some signs and symptoms. But what you need to understand is that iron is a crucial part of hemoglobin. Without iron, your body can't produce hemoglobin, and you will be at risk of anemia.
How much iron do you need?
Women need much more iron than men. When it comes to adults, the daily recommended dose of iron is 8mg for males and 18mg for females .
Pregnant women need even more iron. Think of the baby/embryo as a parasite that's taking iron from you. You therefore need to feed that parasite and yourself. During pregnancy, women also increase their circulation, so they need at least 27mg of iron per day. What is interesting is that, during lactation, women need less iron, or 9mg per day.
Iron deficiency occurs when your body doesn't have enough iron to produce hemoglobin. There are two types of iron: heme iron, which is the iron from animal sources, and non-heme iron, sourced from plants. Animal-sourced iron is better, as your blood can absorb it more easily. The best animal sources of iron are beef, liver, and oysters.
Causes of iron deficiency
Before we discuss the signs of iron deficiency, let's list some of the causes of anemia.When your body is low on iron, it can wreak havoc all over. So here are some things to watch out for:
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