Women are very susceptible with this illness as they menstruate especially when they are pregnant. This occurs when the body doesn’t have enough iron which is an essential element in transferring oxygen to different parts of the body. It is also essential in making hemoglobin for red blood cells. Women would normally take iron supplements for their iron requirement especially when they have a baby in their womb that would also require iron thus, requiring higher RDA (recommended daily allowance) to prevent IDA (Iron Deficiency Anemia).
It normally occurs due to heavy menstrual bleeding, not getting enough iron, internal bleeding and celiac disease. Heavy menstrual bleeding can lead to losing too much blood which is not really how the menstrual cycle works. Children, teenagers and pregnant women have higher iron daily requirement which is not actually supplied due to improper diet, lack of supplements or merely stubbornness. Internal bleeding can be brought by cancer, ulcer or hemorrhoids while celiac disease in which your body cannot absorb iron is the most difficult to handle as it is an autoimmune disease.
The deficiency can be manifested with the following;
- Weakness – as body does not have enough blood to transfer nutrients to different parts of the body.
- Headaches and Dizziness – your body would also require oxygen and without iron, oxygen cannot be transferred.
- Being grumpy and cranky
- Pale skin due to low amount of blood
- Shortening of breath
- And many others.
If you think you may be suffering from IDA, better consult with your health care provider. Your doctor will determine the major cause of IDA and would recommend you with the most efficient medication especially if you are anemic due to internal bleeding. The bleeding should be treated first to prevent further damage to your health. Afterwards, your doctor may prescribe supplements or pills to restore the iron lost in your body. Do not stop taking it even if you are already feeling well because the medication should work its way to full recovery as your doctor would prescribe. Drinking orange juice or taking vitamin C will increase the iron absorption in your body.
DO NOT take supplements without the diagnosis and prescription from your doctor. You might end up getting too much iron than what is recommended that is actually harmful and toxic to your body. Too much iron can act as poison and can cause cancer leading to death. Better follow what the doctor would say.
And as they all would strongly believe, “prevention is better than cure”. You wouldn’t want to suffer from IDA and hinder your activities for the day and goal for your future. Avoiding IDA is done with supplying your body with the right amount of iron that you need. The essential amount of iron can be acquired from meats, vegetables, and whole grains. These foods are guaranteed safe and can supply with the just the right amount of iron you need. There are also foods that are fortified with iron that you can also take. The most important is to take care of yourself by having the right amount of nutrients to fight illness and live a healthy and happy life.