7 things you should know about iron deficiency

Iron is used to make hemoglobin, a protein that carries oxygen from the lungs to all parts of the body, and myoglobin, a protein that provides oxygen to muscles

Iron deficiency is asymptomatic in most people. It is detected only during routine laboratory evaluation

Iron deficiency can be due to pregnancy, poor diet, chronic blood loss, excessive exercise, poor iron absorption, infection and inflammation. Drugs like aspirin and steroids can also cause anemia


Symptoms of anemia include fatigue, irritability, pale skin, chest pain, rapid heartbeat, breathlessness, headache, dizziness, cold hands and feet, Inflammation of tongue and brittle nails


Dark leafy vegetables, beans, lentils are rich in iron. Non-vegetarian sources include red meats, fish, and poultry.


Foods rich in vitamin C help in increasing iron absorption. Vegetables containing phytates and phosphates as well as tannin in tea or coffee can reduce its absorption

How to increase iron absorption?

Iron deficiency is treated with supplements and an iron-rich diet. Intravenous iron infusions are provided when oral iron consumption does not help. Blood transfusion is done in case of severe anemia

The last resort

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