Quick guide to who may needs an iron supplement? And why?
You might be surprised at that, most people you know including yourself may be needing an iron supplement. But firstly, understanding iron is important to set the scene on why it is important.
what is iron?
It is a mineral that is famous for its very important role in the body and overall well-being. Excess iron that is not used up is stored in body, but most profound functions of iron are:
- All body cells contain some iron, but most of the iron is in the red blood cells. Red blood cells transport oxygen from your lungs to the organs and tissues throughout your body.
- Iron has a role in creating energy from nutrients
- It also contributes to the transmission of nerve impulses — the signals that coordinate the actions of different parts of your body.
Who may need iron supplementation?
1. Iron deficiency anaemia
Iron deficiency anaemia is a condition that affects many South African and the rest of African women especially on the childbearing age. It is when there’s not enough iron in your red blood cells. Lack of iron affects the ability of red blood cells to provide oxygen to our cellsand tissues. There are good food sources of Iron, but they can in more serious cases of iron deficiency is not enough. There are vast reasons why people get iron deficiency anaemia such as heavy or prolonged menstruation, peptic ulcer disease, cancer in the digestive tract, blood loss from trauma or blood donation. Gut bleeding from prolonged use of medications like aspirin and ibuprofen
2. Pregnant or Breastfeeding
Women who are pregnant need almost double the amount of iron during pregnancy compared to their non-pregnancy counterparts. This is due the increased iron requirements for baby development and mommy’s health. These needs tend to remain high for the mom for at least 6 months after pregnancy (during exclusive breastfeeding period). It is advisable that pregnancy and breastfeeding women consult with their healthcare provider before you double up on health supplements during this time.
3. Regular blood losses
People who experience excessive blood loss often need extra iron. This could be from being on their menstruation period for longer duration or from regular blood donors and people who have gastrointestinal bleeding. Gastrointestinal bleeding can be caused by medications or conditions such as ulcers and cancer.
4. Certain medications
Some medications can interfere with the body’s ability to absorb iron. There is along list of medications that can have this effect, it ranges from high blood pressure medication, cholesterol lowering medication, ulcer and heartburn medication to some antibiotics. It is a catch 22 and sometimes a disease is important to treat at the time and iron gets put aside, with the trust on iron health supplement presence and efficacy.
5. People on chronic dialysis
Dialysis is the method to artificially clean the blood when there is kidney failure or disease. There are blood losses that sometimes occur during dialysis. While on dialysis ones diet is carefully controlled to meet the kidneys capacity and or method of dialysis used which can limit sufficient intake of good iron sources resulting in iron deficiency. Some medications taken during dialysis may also interfere with absorption and utilization of iron.
Note: Always consult with your healthcare provider regarding the health supplements you are currently on and/ or the ones you intend to take before taking them.
Which of Sportron/Swissgarde product is iron supplement?