When it comes to supplements, is a multivitamin with iron important or is iron something the body can do without? Of course, iron is important to the body but why are there some multivitamin with iron content while some don’t have this mineral?
To be able to determine whether a multivitamin with iron is truly important, let us first take a look at the role of iron in the body.
Iron is a mineral that plays a role in the different metabolic functions in the body. It is also part of the hemoglobin, which is the part of the blood responsible for carrying oxygen. It is an important co-factor in the production of neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine.
There are two forms, namely the heme and non-heme. Heme iron comes from meat, fish, liver, and poultry while non-heme iron includes beans, lentils, cereals, flour, and other grain products.
Non-heme iron is not as well absorbed by the body like heme iron. Other sources of iron include strawberries, nuts, green leafy vegetables, peas, and asparagus.
Iron deficiency anemia is one problem caused by lack of iron. It is characterized by severe fatigue and weakness, pale skin, and a weakened immunity. Anemia is common in pregnant women, children, and those who consume a diet low in iron.
While a lack of this mineral can be a problem, an excess amount can be harmful too. Too much iron in the body is called hemochromatosis and this can lead to diabetes, skin irregularities, and damage to the liver.
An excess of iron can also cause heart and brain damage, which can lead to heart attack or stroke. The risk for too much iron is actually greater than lack of this mineral. The body only accumulates iron, with only minimal loss through hair, fingernails, and skin cells.
The dangers of too much iron are real and are very serious. Anemia, though caused by a lack of iron, is not treated with iron but with B-complex vitamins, specifically folic acid, B6, and B12. The body can get much iron from the diet, that is why a multivitamin with iron just doesn’t seem to be the worth the risk.
A multivitamin with iron can cause your iron levels to increase and can place you at risk for the harmful effects of this mineral.
Rather than take a multivitamin with this mineral, make it a point to eat foods rich in iron everyday so you won’t have to worry about iron deficiency. Of course, a natural multivitamin with other important nutrients is also crucial as well.
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