Over 30% of the world’s population is anemic, with a big percentage attributed to iron deficiency. In fact, according to the World Health Organization, “Iron deficiency affects more people than any other condition.”
Did you know?
Iron is a crucial nutrient: It helps your cells work properly, increases your concentration levels and memory, helps form hemoglobin in your red blood cells that carries oxygen to all parts of your body, boosts your body’s energy supplies, and may even ward off depression.
Women of childbearing age, pregnant women, vegetarians, people who have poor diet, people who donate blood frequently, infants and children (especially children born prematurely or going through a growth spurt) are more at risk for Iron deficiency. However, the condition is common and can occur in men and women of any age.
Iron deficiency symptoms may be subtle at first, and in fact, many people experience the symptoms for years without realizing they have the deficiency. Stay alert for these warning signs, and get a blood test if you suspect you or child have anemia:
- Extreme fatigue
- Pale skin
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pain
- Cold hands and feet
- Inflammation or soreness of the tongue
- Frequent infections
- Brittle nails
- Fast heartbeat
- Unusual cravings for substances that don’t offer a nutritional value, such as ice or dirt
- Poor appetite (in infants and children)
- An uncomfortable tingling in legs
To treat iron deficiency anemia, iron supplements can be recommended by your doctor. If necessary, your doctor will also address the underlying cause of your deficiency. In many instances, diet changes will also be recommended.
Treat iron deficiency to stay on top of the world!