Women are prone to iron deficiency because of their monthly menstrual cycle and pregnancy. But generally, everyone is prone and can develop unusual illnesses such as restless leg syndrome or even eating disorder like pica if this deficiency remains unaddressed.
Pale skin, headaches, and feeling tired are the common symptoms of lack of iron in the body. In addition to these, Health Magazine shared experiencing short of breath when you just do minimal work, being grumpy all the time, hair loss or fall, inflamed tongue are also clear indication of deficiency that can lead to anemia.
“Iron deficiency anemia occurs when your body does not have enough iron. Iron helps make red blood cells,” Medline Plus of US’ National Institutes of Health informed. “Red blood cells bring oxygen to the body’s tissues. Healthy red blood cells are made in your bone marrow. Red blood cells circulate through your body for 3 to 4 months. Parts of your body, such as your spleen, remove old blood cells.
Medline Plus also noted that apart from not eating food with iron and body’s incapability to absorb iron, bleeding is also a reason for iron loss. Bleeding can happen during menstrual periods or if a patient is suffering from gastrointestinal bleeding, peptic ulcer disease, and cancer (colon, esophagus, and stomach).
Another notable detail about iron is the odd things that can happen if you develop severe anemia like noticeable brittle nails; the whites in the eyes become bluish; and desire to eat non-food substances like ice (pagophagia), chalk or clay – a disorder called pica.
“Pagophagia (compulsive ice chewing) has long been associated with iron deficiency anemia, but prior attempts to account for this craving have been unsatisfactory. We hypothesize that chewing ice triggers vascular changes that lead to preferential or increased perfusion of the brain. This would result in increased alertness and processing speed in anemic patients, but not in healthy controls who are already at ceiling, and would explain why anemic individuals crave ice,” a clinical psychologist in University of Pennsylvania Melissa Hunt shared about her study.
Clearly, having enough iron is good for the inside and outside of human body. To keep your iron level in control, Medline suggested to eat cereals, egg yolks, red meat especially the liver part, whole-grain bread, oat meal, fish, dried beans, peanut butter, soybeans, raising, prunes, and spinach. Consulting your doctor is also advisable as there severe cases that need in-depth tests and treatments