Feeling fatigued, pale, inside of bottom eyelids pale? You may be lacking Iron

Iron is needed to make the red blood cell to carry oxygen around the body. Not enough Iron, not enough red blood cells.

Iron is naturally lower in the blood in the afternoon, so you may feel a bit tired.

Iron deficiency can be cause by direct blood loss via menses, pregnancy and abnormal bleeding. Inside the digestive system – stomach by ulcers, NSAIDS, intestines by hookworm, and large bowel by tumors, ulcerative colitis and haemorrhoids. You may not be having enough iron in your diet or unable to absorb it.

 

Transferrin

Carries the iron around the body.

It can be raised when the body is looking for Iron in cases of iron deficiency, Oestrogens, OCP, pregnancy, hypothyodism, B12 or folate deficiency or acute liver disease.

It’s reduced with chronic inflammatory and liver disease, malabsorption, malignancy, renal disease, thyrotoxicosis, steroid therapy and haemochromatosis

 

Saturation

Should be 10-50%. The closer to 50% you are the better.

 

Ferritin

This is your Iron stores and should be at 100. It also is affected by inflammation.  High levels might be caused from inflammation in iron rich tissues like the liver, gut, spleen and lymph system, so an investigation with a C-Reactive Protein (CRP) test is a good way to check that out.

High levels maybe from Iron overload like genetic haemochromatosis or fatty liver, alcohol, liver disease, malignancy, renal failure, thyroiditis, anorexia or blood infusion.
Low levels maybe from the same as low levels of Iron as they are draining the Iron stores.

Think of Iron in the blood as spending your cash and Transferrin as your cash card, so when you run out of cash you have it and always needing Ferritin as money in the bank with a balance of $100.

 

Pathocize (exercise for your pathology)

Ensuring you have good levels of Iron, check for anyone with haemochromatosis in your family. This can be masked while still having your menses and is revealed during menopause.

 

 Iron is found in these foods http://www.nutritionaustralia.org/national/resource/iron

Food Serving size Iron content
  Chicken liver 100g 11mg
  Beef 100g 3.5mg
  Kangaroo 100g 3.2mg
  Kidney beans 1 cup 3.1mg
  Green lentils 1 cup 3.0mg
  Tofu 100g 2.96mg
  Chickpeas 1 cup 2.7mg
  Lamb 100g 2.5mg
  Cashew nuts 30g (20 nuts) 1.5mg
  Salmon 100g 1.28mg
  Raw spinach 1 cup 1.2mg
  Tinned tuna 100g 1.07mg
  Rolled oats 30g 1.1mg
  Almonds 30g 1.1mg
  Lamb brains 100g 1.0mg
  Dried apricot 30g (5 dried apricots) 0.93mg
  Broccoli 1 cup 0.86mg
  Pork 100g 0.8mg
  Cooked brown rice 140g (1 cup) 0.7mg
  Chicken 100g 0.4mg
  Snapper 100g 0.3mg

 

  • eat foods high in vitamin C with foods that contain iron
  • cook your plant foods to improve the amount of available iron
  • avoid having tea, coffee or calcium during or directly after having a source of iron

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