Resources
ResourcesExplore the full ACKO experience and make the most of your plan
EXPLORE
Articles
Guides
Ebooks
HELP CENTER
FAQs
GET IN TOUCH
1800 266 2256

Home / Health Insurance / Articles / Minerals / The role of iron in preventing anemia

The role of iron in preventing anemia

Team AckoApr 4, 2023

Anaemia is a medical condition in which a person has an abnormally low level of healthy red blood cells or haemoglobin. It can be caused by a wide range of factors, from poor nutrition to chronic disease. When anaemic, a person may experience symptoms like fatigue, dizziness, cold hands and feet and paleness. 

While there are a variety of treatments available for treating anaemia, one of the best strategies for preventing it is by ensuring that the body has an adequate supply of iron, as it plays a significant role in the body’s ability to produce red blood cells and maintain optimal health.

The role of iron in preventing anemia

Contents

icon

What is Iron?

Iron is an essential mineral that our body needs to help maintain healthy red blood cells. It is found in a variety of foods and is needed for various physiological processes. It also helps produce haemoglobin, a substance in red blood cells that carries oxygen from the lungs to other parts of the body. When the body does not have enough iron, it is unable to produce enough healthy red blood cells, which can lead to anaemia.

What are the common sources of Iron?

Iron can be obtained from both dietary and supplemental sources. Common dietary sources of iron include red meat, poultry, fish, legumes, dried fruit, nuts, dark leafy green vegetables, enriched breads and cereals. Some types of iron, such as heme iron, are best absorbed by the body when consumed with vitamin C-rich food or juice. Supplements, such as iron tablets, also provide an excellent source of iron.

Who is at risk for anaemia due to iron deficiency?

Certain groups are at higher risk of developing anaemia due to iron deficiency. These include pregnant women, young children, postmenopausal women, men with low testosterone levels and people with chronic diseases such as Crohn’s disease, cancer or HIV/AIDS. People with blood loss due to traumatic events or surgery are also at a higher risk for anaemia.

How does Iron prevent anaemia?

Adequate iron intake helps prevent anaemia by increasing the body’s ability to produce healthy red blood cells. Eating a variety of foods that are rich in iron and taking a daily iron supplement can help to ensure that the body receives adequate amounts of iron to maintain a healthy blood supply. For people at high risk for anaemia, doctors may recommend iron supplementation or even intravenous iron therapy.

Signs and symptoms of iron deficiency anaemia

When a person is deficient in iron, they may experience a number of symptoms that are indicative of anaemia. These include tiredness, pale skin, feeling cold, headaches, dizziness, shortness of breath, heart palpitations, brittle nails, difficulty concentrating and depression. If a person has any of these symptoms and suspects that they could have anaemia, they should see their doctor for testing.

How do I know if I need iron supplements?

If you are concerned that you may be at risk of developing anaemia due to iron deficiency, it is important to speak with your doctor. They can perform a simple blood test that can be used to determine the amount of iron your body has. If the test reveals that your iron levels are too low, the doctor may recommend that you begin taking iron supplements or make changes to your diet to increase your dietary iron intake.

Which foods should I eat to ensure adequate iron intake?

If your body’s iron levels are low, it is important to include a variety of iron-rich foods in your diet. This includes meats like red meat, poultry, fish and shellfish, as well as legumes like lentils, chickpeas and kidney beans. Certain iron-rich vegetables and fruits, such as spinach, kale, prunes and apricots, can also be a great supplement. Eating these foods, along with other iron-rich foods, is essential for preventing anaemia.

Are there any side effects of iron supplements?

Iron supplements can cause side effects in some people. These include nausea, constipation, abdominal pain, and vomiting. Too much iron can also be dangerous and can damage organs, so it is important to take iron supplements only as suggested by your doctor. Iron supplements should not be taken by pregnant women without a doctor’s recommendation.

Balance 

Iron plays an important role in the body’s ability to produce healthy red blood cells and prevent anaemia. Getting adequate amounts of iron can be done through diet, supplementation and even intravenous therapy. However, too much iron can be dangerous and should only be taken with a doctor’s recommendation. Eating a variety of iron-rich foods, such as meats, fish, legumes and dark leafy green vegetables, is an excellent way to ensure that the body always has enough iron to prevent anaemia.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Here are some common questions about The role of iron in preventing anemia

Icon

What are the symptoms of anemia?

Symptoms of anemia may include fatigue, dizziness, cold hands and feet, paleness and shortness of breath.

What are common sources of iron?

Common sources of iron include red meat, poultry, fish, legumes, dried fruit, nuts, dark leafy green vegetables, enriched breads and cereals.

Who is at risk for iron deficiency anemia?

People at risk for iron deficiency anemia include pregnant women, young children, postmenopausal women, men with low testosterone levels and people with chronic diseases such as Crohn’s disease, cancer or HIV/AIDS.

How can I prevent anemia?

Preventing anemia can be done by eating a variety of iron-rich foods and taking a daily iron supplement. For people at high risk for anemia, doctors may recommend iron supplementation or even intravenous iron therapy.

icon

Want to post any comments?

icon

Affordable Health Insurance for You & Your Family starting @ ₹20/day*

✅ 100% Room Rent Covered* ✅ Zero deductions at claims ✅ 7100+ Cashless Hospitals