If your iron levels are low, your doctor may recommend oral or injectable supplements to get your levels back up quickly. However, you can also raise your iron levels by eating foods that are high in iron and foods rich in vitamin C that enhance iron absorption in your body.
Foods contain iron in two forms:
Heme iron: Found in meats and poultry, well absorbed by the body
Nonheme iron: Found in plant-based and iron-fortified foods, not as well absorbed by the body
|Meat and poultry||
What are signs of iron deficiency?
Iron deficiency anemia may be overlooked in initial stages because symptoms are often mild or non-specific. As the deficiency worsens, however, it may cause more obvious signs and symptoms such as:
- Pale skin
- Reduced appetite
- Extreme tiredness or fatigue
- Poor stamina
- Cold hands and feet
- Body aches
- Brittle nails
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pain
- Sore or inflamed tongue
- Pica (unusual craving of substances that have no nutritional value such as ice, clay, paper, or soil)
- Frequent infections
How much iron do you need each day?
The amount of iron you need each day depends on several factors such as:
|Group (age, gender, special situations)||Recommended amount (milligrams)|
|Birth to 6 months||0.27|
|7 to 12 months||11|
|1 to 3 years||7|
|4 to 8 years||10|
|9 to 13 years||8|
|14 to 18 years (boys)||11|
|14 to 18 years (girls)||15|
|19 to 50 years (men)||8|
|19 to 50 years (women)||18|
|51 years and above||8|
Top What Raises Iron Quickly Related Articles
Anemia: Common Causes, Symptoms, Types, and TreatmentAnemia is a disease marked by low numbers of red blood cells. Low iron deficiency or underlying disease, like cancer, may be to blame. Treatment can resolve anemia.
AnemiaAnemia is the condition of having less than the normal number of red blood cells or less than the normal quantity of hemoglobin in the blood. The oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood is, therefore, decreased. There are several types of anemia such as iron deficiency anemia (the most common type), sickle cell anemia, vitamin B12 anemia, pernicious anemia, and aplastic anemia. Symptoms of anemia may include fatigue, malaise, hair loss, palpitations, menstruation, and medications. Treatment for anemia includes treating the underlying cause for the condition. Iron supplements, vitamin B12 injections, and certain medications may also be necessary.
carbonyl ironCarbonyl iron is an iron supplement used as a dietary supplement and to prevent and treat iron deficiency anemia. Iron supplements are available over the counter (OTC) as different iron salts and are usually an ingredient of multivitamins. Do not use supplemental iron to treat anemias not associated with iron deficiency. Common side effects of carbonyl iron include nausea, vomiting, upper abdominal (epigastric) pain, diarrhea, constipation, dark stools, heartburn, urine discoloration, dental stain, and iron overload in organs and tissues (hemosiderosis). Consult your doctor if pregnant or breastfeeding.
Iron SupplementsFerrous sulfate (Fer-In-Sol, Slow Fe, Feosol, Feratab) is a supplement used for the treatment of iron deficiency anemias. The most common side effects associated with ferrous sulfate treatment are constipation, dark stools, stomach pain, nausea, and vomiting.
Food and Recipes: Top Foods High in IronWebMD shows you which foods to choose that are high in iron -- and tasty, too!
How Do You Fix Anemia?
Anemia describes a condition in which you have a low red blood cell count and low hemoglobin levels. This is a serious condition as red blood cells and hemoglobin carry oxygen to all your cells, allowing them to burn energy. If you’re anemic, you’ll likely feel fatigued and short of breath, lacking physical stamina. You may have heart problems and appear pale. Anemia is often a symptom of some other disease or condition, so treatment varies widely depending on the root cause.
Signs You're Low on Vitamin CWorried you're coming up short on vitamin C? Here are some telltale symptoms to watch out for.
Vitamin C: What You Should KnowWant to see if you're getting enough vitamin c? Find out what you should know with this slideshow from WebMD.
What Are the 3 Stages of Iron Deficiency?Iron is an important substance that our body needs in minute amounts. Daily ingestion of iron is needed for the health of red blood cells and muscle proteins, as well as the functioning of body cells. The normal body iron content in an adult is approximately 3-4 grams.