Low iron: symptoms you should know
Did you know that the low iron becomes the most common lack? In fact, the World Health Organization itself estimates that around 650 million people around the world suffer from iron deficiencies. We are, therefore, facing one of the most common nutritional deficiencies, especially in developing countries as a result of hookworms, and in Western Europe is due mainly to the consumption of an inefficient proportion of this important mineral in our daily food.
It is a very important lack, which has consequences on our health and which causes in our organism the appearance of a series of clear symptoms that we should all know, because they will help us to discover if our consumption of iron is adequate and, especially, if we are following a correct, balanced diet, and that we provide the amount of this mineral we need every day.
Among other important functions, iron allows the hemoglobin to work properly providing valuable oxygen to all the cells in our body. Hence, one of the first symptoms that causes the existence of low levels of iron is fatigue and weakness. But let's go in parts.
What is iron? What is it for?
Iron is a mineral, a nutritive substance which is fundamental both for our health and ultimately for the proper and proper functioning of our body. We find it in small quantities in our body, hence we must provide it through the monitoring of a varied and balanced diet.
We must differentiate between two types of iron depending on the food consumed. On the one hand we find the one known as heme iron, exclusive of foods of animal origin which is absorbed more easily by our body. We also find the iron not heme, which we find in foods of vegetable origin and is absorbed in smaller quantities.
Among the most important iron functions, is responsible for participating in the following activities: intervenes actively in the transport of oxygen to all cells of the body, participates in the production of compounds and substances in the blood (hemoglobin), participates in the synthesis of DNA, is part of the process of cellular respiration, participates in a wide variety of chemical reactions, helps maintain the immune system and is vital in the production and release of energy.
Normal and abnormal values of iron in the blood
The iron analysis consists of the determination of serum iron, useful to know the amount of iron in our body together with transferrin. In fact, iron is taken up by transferrin from its intake through food.
- Normal iron values in adults (men): between 80 to 180 μg / dl.
- Normal values of iron in adults (women): between 60 to 160 μg / dl.
- Normal values of iron in children: between 50 to 120 μg / dl.
- Normal values of iron in children under 1 year: 100 to 250 μg / dl.
Increased levels of iron may be due to hemolytic anemia, hemochromatosis, hepatitis, hemosiderosis, lead poisoning, iron poisoning and cancer. While the diminished levels may be due to iron deficiency anemia, chronic blood loss, diets with little iron, pregnancy, malnutrition, chronic hypermenorrhea, hematuria and cancer.
What are the symptoms that low iron causes?
Tiredness and weakness
One of the main functions of iron is to allow the hemoglobin to function correctly by supplying oxygen to all the cells in our body. When the iron is under the cells and the tissues receive less oxygen, affecting its operation.
As a result, it is common for the person who has low iron levels in the blood to feel more tired and weak, with less vitality. It is common to get tired more when doing daily tasks that before did not involve practically any type of effort. On the other hand, it is usual that this fatigue feels chronic.
When the level of iron in blood is very low and anemia tends to get worse the color of the skin and mucous membranes tends to turn pale, precisely because the tissues receive a smaller amount of oxygen.
Irritability and low level of performance
Low levels of iron in the blood can directly influence our emotional state, problems can arise such as irritability, low mood and even depression.
In turn, both emotional state and fatigue itself have an abnormally low performance.
Low iron can also influence the appearance of palpitations; or what is the same, fast heartbeat that results in having the uncomfortable feeling of being aware of our own heartbeat.
Dizziness and nausea
As a consequence of the lack or little amount of oxygen in our cells and in our tissues, it is common for tiredness to be joined too dizziness and nausea. That is, the person who has low levels of iron in the blood is common to get sick more usually, and feel nausea on several occasions throughout the day. This article is published for informational purposes only. It can not and should not replace the consultation with a Physician. We advise you to consult your Trusted Doctor.