One in four women suffers from low iron. So important is iron to overall health that even mild deficiencies can affect your ability to perform everyday mental and physical tasks. And you do not have to be diagnosed as anemic to feel the effects of low iron. In a 2003 British Medical Journal clinical trial involving non-anemic women, iron supplementation dramatically improved fatigue that could not be explained.Women are more susceptible to iron deficiency anemia due to blood loss during their monthly cycles. Yet over 57 percent of women do not get adequate levels of iron from their diet. Women require up to 20 mg of iron daily during the childbearing years, but most get less than 10 mg per day from food and often it is poorly absorbed. Simply taking 10 mg per day of elemental iron could provide us with that much-needed boost of energy.
Not all iron supplements are the same. Make sure the iron you are taking is elemental. Low-dose iron supplementation is preferable over the long term as it is less likely to create problems such as iron overload and gastric irritation. The body must work harder to access iron in coated tablets that contain binders and fillers. Liquids are easier to digest and absorb than solids due to their larger surface area – and liquid iron is no exception.
When iron is not well absorbed, any leftovers destined for eventual elimination can irritate the intestinal walls and cause pain, cramping, diarrhea, constipation and black stools. As any pregnant woman knows, constipation during this time can be debilitating. It is important to choose a supplement like Ironsmart with Lipofer, which has a revolutionary that is highly absorbable, non-irritating to the digestive tract and superior to typical iron supplements in so many ways.
Ironsmart with Lipofer delivers iron in a liposomal complex (picture the iron in a protective bubble). You can take Ironsmart with Lipofer by itself or with food, which is unique as most iron supplements must be taken alone to avoid the other nutrients that significantly reduce iron absorbability. The liposomal iron in Ironsmart with Lipofer travels through the high-acid stomach environment without interference from any compounds that it encounters along the way. Eventually, it reaches the duodenum and the jejunum (the middle gastrointestinal tract), where it is easily absorbed. The liposomal delivery system in Ironsmart with Lipofer is made up of sunflower lecithin. Because the liposome is similar in structure to cell membranes, it allows the iron to enter the cell easily and make the iron more readily absorbed. The liposome-encapsulated vegetarian ferric pyrophosphate in Ironsmart with Lipofer has proven to be a superior delivery system. Results from a recent study showed that absorption of Ironsmart with Lipofer liposomal iron, tested two hours after oral administration, is five times greater than using the standard iron salt (ferrous fumarate). And after 12 hours, the total absorption of Ironsmart with Lipofer was far higher than all other forms of iron.
Is your get up and go … gone?
Women are three times more likely to feel fatigued than men
Women are tired. We are three times more likely than men to complain of feeling fatigued. Today’s woman does not have time to be burdened by exhaustion or poor concentration; we are too busy. Often we are so busy taking care of others that we forget to take care of ourselves and do not even notice visible symptoms such as dark circles under the eyes and brittle fingernailssymptoms that something is missing.
That missing something is iron. Iron deficiency is the most common nutrient deficiency in the world. One in four women suffers from low iron. So important is iron to overall health that even mild deficiencies can affect your ability to perform everyday mental and physical tasks. And you do not have to be diagnosed as anemic to feel the effects of low iron. In a 2003 British Medical Journal clinical trial involving non-anemic women, iron supplementation dramatically improved fatigue that could not be explained.
Women are more susceptible to iron deficiency anemia due to blood loss during their monthly cycles. Yet over 57 percent of women do not get adequate levels of iron from their diet. Women require up to 20 mg of iron daily during the childbearing years, but most get less than 10 mg per day from food and often it is poorly absorbed. Simply taking 10 mg per day of elemental iron could provide us with that much-needed boost of energy.
In addition to fatigue, iron deficiency is also associated with other health concerns including poor mental performance, premenstrual syndrome, depression, low thyroid function, fertility problems, heart palpitations and pre- and post-pregnancy complications. During my lectures and seminars, so many women report these concerns that I was compelled to write this booklet. I have personally suffered for years with iron deficiency anemia. The good news for all is that iron deficiency is preventable and effectively treated through a revolutionary new form of iron.
Iron + oxygen = energy
Iron plays a major role in energy production.
This is why fatigue is one of the most common symptoms of iron deficiency. Iron is needed to make adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which fuels all of the body’s 100 billion cells. Low iron also means less oxygen delivered to cells. The average adult body contains approximately 3 to 4 grams of iron. Iron is part of hemoglobin, a protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen to the body’s tissues. Oxygenated blood is a dark, rich red color.
About 10 percent of our iron is found in myoglobin in muscles, which is required for short-term oxygen storage during physical exertion. The rest is distributed in the liver, spleen, kidneys, bone marrow and other organs, where it is involved in other functions including detoxification, cell protection, hormone manufacture (predominantly estrogen and progesterone), and the action of serotonin, your happy hormone. Even heavy metal toxicity is related to low iron. For all of these reasons, persistently low ironeven if you are not considered anemic (see page 5)is a serious concern. Iron is a girl’s best friend.
Is Iron Equal?
There are two types of iron: heme and non-heme. Heme iron is found in flesh foods and is easily absorbed (about 25 percent). Non-heme is found in plants and generally is not as well absorbed.
-Turkey & chicken (dark meat)
-Fish & seafood
Non-heme(not easily absorbed)
-Seeds & nuts (pumpkin, sesame)
-Dried fruit (raisins, apricots)
-Dark colored vegetables
-Fortified with iron breakfast cereals
What causes iron deficiency?
With too little iron, you won’t have enough oxygenyou’ll be running on empty
It is not always easy to consume dietary iron. Your dietary iron could be low because of a vegetarian diet, chronic dieting or reduced caloric intake or limited access to food diversity as a result of factors such as geography or low income.
Heavy menstrual periods, regularly giving blood, certain medications (especially aspirin), and chronic bleeding disorders (e.g. peptic ulcers, polyps or intestinal cell growths) can cause iron to be depleted through chronic blood loss.
At certain times, the body’s need for iron increases, including during childhood and adolescent growth spurts, pregnancy and breastfeeding. A deficiency can occur quickly during these times of increased need.
Regular exercise increases your need for iron. Hard training, for instance, increases red blood cell production. The more you sweat, the more iron is also lost through sweating. This is why athletes are one group prone to iron deficiency.
Poor iron absorption
Some people, including the elderly, people with digestive issues and/or disease, have a reduced ability to absorb or use iron from food.
The lowdown on low iron
Low iron does not develop overnight. The human body anticipates this problem and stores iron (as ferritin) in case your future dietary intake is inadequate. But, over time, if your needs aren’t met, these stores will deplete in the following way.
Iron Depletion:At first, your body uses whatever stored iron you have to keep your levels of hemoglobin normal. At this stage of iron depletion, you may not have symptoms.
Iron Deficiency:Gradually, as hemoglobin levels drop below normal, the amount of oxygen being supplied to your cells diminishes and you may experience some symptoms (see chart), particularly tiredness. This stage is known as an iron deficiency.
Iron Deficiency Anemia:Over time, your hemoglobin and ferritin levels become so low that the blood cannot deliver enough oxygen to your cells. Symptoms like paleness, breathing difficulties, low immunity, lack of mental clarity and greater fatigue are common. The diagnosis: iron deficient anemia.
Important iron blood tests
Low iron status is commonand is just as commonly overlooked. Have your serum ferritin checked by your doctor. This will tell you how much iron is stored in your body and is a good indicator of whether you are low in iron or suffering a deficiency. A blood test that checks hemoglobin levels will only catch the problem once your iron stores are close to depleted. Testing hemoglobin alone is a bit like checking to see if the barn door is unlocked when all of the chickens are already escaping down the road.
For hemoglobin, the test range is 117-160 g/L for women and 131-180 g/L for men. A ferritin test will be 15-160 ug/L for women and 15-410 ug/L for men.