No matter the reason behind an iron deficiency, having low amounts of iron in the body can really slow you down. If you are experiencing symptoms of iron deficiency, talk to your doctor as there could be more serious underlying causes.
Common causes for iron deficiency include diet, blood loss, decreased ability to absorb iron, and pregnancy.
A diet lacking in iron-rich foods can lead to low iron levels in the body. With the rise in popularity of certain diets and lifestyle choices, it’s more important than ever before to be aware of whether or not your diet consists of enough iron-rich foods. For those adhering to a vegetarian, vegan, or paleo diet, consider adding more iron-rich food and learn more about iron absorption.
Blood loss due to menstruation can lead to lower iron levels among women. But it’s also important to note that iron deficiency may be a problem for those who donate blood on a regular basis. Any type of blood loss puts an individual at higher risk for a deficiency.
Decreased Ability to Absorb Iron
Just because you’re getting enough iron doesn’t mean you’re absorbing it. There are many reasons you might have a decreased ability to absorb iron, such as a vegetarian or vegan diet. Understanding strategies to increase iron absorption can help you avoid low iron levels.
During pregnancy, a woman is not only supporting her own nutritional needs but those of her unborn child. This puts pregnant women at a higher risk of being iron deficient. It’s important for pregnant women to work with their doctor throughout pregnancy to ensure all her nutritional needs are being met.