10 signs for iron deficiency

An iron deficiency can cause symptoms so slight you might not know that something’s wrong! If you’re experiencing any of the following issues, it’s important to consult with your doctor.

Life is busy and it can often be a struggle to eat healthy and get in the iron-rich foods we need! Unfortunately, not getting enough iron can lead to an iron deficiency that can be hard to detect. As this ailment can be mild or severe, it can cause a host of symptoms that aren’t fun to deal with. If you’re struggling with any of the following, there’s a chance you may be dealing with low iron levels. Be sure to share the ways you get your daily intake on your favorite family app!

What Are the Symptoms of Iron Deficiency?

If you think you’re lacking iron, there are a number of things to watch out for. Here are the 10 most common iron deficiency symptoms:

1. Tiredness 

One of the most common symptoms of iron deficiency is tiredness and fatigue. This is because the body requires iron to create the protein hemoglobin, which exists in red blood cells. Hemoglobin carries oxygen to the body so if your blood count is low, you’ll experience low energy.  

iron deficiency tired mom2. Pale Skin and Eyelids Can Point to Iron Deficiency

The hemoglobin in red blood cells also gives the skin its shade. In the case of low iron levels, your skin and lower eyelids can lose some of their color. You may even notice this on the inside of your lips and under your nails. However, this symptom is often seen in more severe cases.

3. Shortness of Breath

Because hemoglobin carries oxygen throughout your body, you may also experience shortness of breath when dealing with an iron deficiency. This means that activities like running, hiking and even walking can be more difficult.

4. Iron Deficiency Symptoms: Dizziness 

There are many causes of headaches out there. But if you’re experiencing frequent headaches alongside dizziness, this can be a sign of iron deficiency. If there isn’t enough oxygen reaching the brain, your blood vessels will swell and create pressure.

5. Dry Hair and Skin

When your body is iron deficient, it automatically directs oxygen to the most important functions of your body. This means that other parts may not get as much, which can result in damaged hair and skin. Iron deficiency and hair loss can go hand in hand.

6. Restless Leg Syndrome 

It might seem strange, but if you’re experiencing the need to move your legs it could be an iron issue. According to an NCBI statistic, approximately 25 percent of people with restless leg syndrome have iron deficiency anemia.

7. Low Iron Levels Can Cause Brittle Fingernails 

While this is one of the low iron symptoms seen in extreme cases, this deficiency can lead to koilonychia. This is when nails crack and chip easily or begin to get the rounded appearance of a spoon.

8. Anxiety

People who struggle to have enough iron may also experience feelings of anxiety. Because there is less oxygen available, there can be feelings of nervousness and anxiousness until low iron levels are resolved.

anxiety woman headache9. Food Cravings as a Sign for Iron Deficiency

We all have food cravings and we’ve all heard of pregnant women who have strange ones. However, getting cravings for things like clay, ice, or paper can be a sign of illness. Share your own strange cravings with others on FamilyApp.  

10. Cold Extremities

In the event that you’re dealing with low iron levels or a deficiency, your body will be providing less oxygen to your extremities. This means that you may be experiencing cold hands or feet.

How Can Iron Deficiency Be Cured?

If you think you have an iron deficiency, it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor. They will be able to do a blood test and determine if your iron levels are adequate. If not, they may prescribe iron supplements that will boost your intake. Consuming iron-rich foods like leafy greens, dried fruit, seafood, and nuts can help to stave off this issue. Eating vitamin C can as well help your body absorb iron more readily, so adding more fruits and vegetables is key. It’s not difficult to rectify this deficiency, but it’s important so daily symptoms don’t have long term effects! Be sure to share your own experiences on your favorite family app.

An iron deficiency can lead to a host of symptoms like fatigue and anxiety that are unpleasant to deal with. Luckily, by eating iron-rich foods or taking a supplement, you can avoid dealing with this ailment. Do you have any suggestions for getting more iron into your diet? Share them with others in our comments. After all, iron-rich foods are an important part of maintaining a balanced diet!

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Sarah Lopez

Just watching Sarah makes us feel tired- she's always on the go, and loves meeting new people or trying new things. She never stops coming up with new delicious meals, but is a pro when it comes to balancing food with fitness. After starting off her day with a high intensity workout, she refuels with an acai bowl or chia seed pudding.

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