What is Low Iron or Anemia

Iron deficiency anemia is a common type of anemia — a condition in which blood lacks adequate healthy red blood cells. Red blood cells carry oxygen to the body’s tissues. As the name implies, iron deficiency anemia is due to insufficient iron.

Researched Low Iron or Anemia

Understanding your Iron levels is crucial to safe exercise.

Nutrition for Low Iron or Anemia

Iron is a component that is required for oxygen transport within hemoglobin.

It’s also required for red blood cell formation. If your iron stores and your hemoglobin drop really low, you may be experiencing weakness and breathlessness and loss of strength.

Make sure you look to consume at least two to three servings of a meat source of protein each week. This is going to contain what’s so-called heme iron, which is a much more absorbable form of iron. Look for things like red meat, lean red meats such as steak and ground beef, as well as chicken and seafood.

Things like our leafy green vegetables such as spinach and kale and broccoli. These are non-heme iron sources, however, so you must consume a vitamin C source to enhance absorption of these. Citrus fruit or strawberries taken with those non-heme iron sources can also help you to replenish your stores. Local Registered Dietician 

If you have questions about nutrition for low iron or anemia, contact a local registered dietitian or nutritionist.

Presenter: Ms. Lauren K. Williams, Registered Dietitian, Vancouver, BC

Local Practitioners: Registered Dietitian

Symptoms of Pernicious Anemia

The most common symptom of vitamin B12 deficiency is fatigue. In later stages, it can cause a peripheral neuropathy with numbness of the feet and the lower legs. Pernicious anemia can affect the balance and strength of the lower limbs, due to its effects on the spinal cord. It can affect the vision with optic atrophy or actual damage to the optic nerve. In the most severe cases it can present with a dementia-illness that resembles Alzheimer’s disease. Local Nutritionist 

Fortunately, pernicious anemia does not usually reach more serious manifestations, as it’s diagnosed earlier when a patient presents with fatigue or anemia. The diagnosis is made by measuring a vitamin B12 level, which is easy to do. If you’re vitamin B12 deficient, there’s a characteristic abnormality of your blood. In addition to becoming anemic, which is a decrease in the red blood cells, the red blood cells get very big. Big blood cells are called macrocytosis, and they’re measured by the MCV parameter on the blood test. A very high MCV is highly suggestive of a vitamin B12 deficiency, and that’s often the first clue.

Local Registered Dietican

Victoria Middleton

Victoria Middleton

RD
Registered Dietitian
New York City, NY
Yumna Khan

Yumna Khan

RD
Registered Dietitian
Burlington, ON
Margarita deGraaf

Margarita deGraaf

RD
Registered Dietitian
Burlington, ON
Alexis Williams

Alexis Williams

RD
Registered Dietitian
Burlington, ON

Smart Food Now

Smart Food Now

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