Low iron can cause you to have less energy….
Low iron symptoms in women can be a sign of exhaustion and reasons why you have no energy to workout. There are things you should know about iron and its side effects. Your body will let you know if you have an iron deficiency, you just need to know what signs to look for.
Low iron is known as an Iron Deficiency and can lead to anemia which means you have too little hemoglobin (oxygen-carrying red blood cells).
In this article I will explain the symptoms, signs, natural ways to fix it, foods your body must have, and the risks associated with low iron levels.
NO Energy or Exhausted all the time?
Having no energy and being exhausted all the time is one of the most common signs of having low iron levels although most women don't realize it because they are always so busy and lead a multi-tasking lifestyle. After we finish all of our responsibilities in a day, of course we will be exhausted!
It's important to know the difference in being tired from a hard days work and being exhausted from low iron. Iron deficiency causes less oxygen to reach your tissues, so your body is deprived of the energy it needs. If being tired causes you to feel weak, unable to focus, have headaches, or lightheaded, then low iron levels might be your issue.
Do you struggle with finding the energy to fit that workout in your busy schedule, because if you do then you may want to re-think the problem. Usually when people have an exercise routine, they find themselves with more energy and require less sleep. So if you are having trouble finding energy to function in this way then you may have an iron deficiency. The good news is that you can overcome it, once you realize it. Keep reading and I'll feed you this valuable information.
Symptoms and Causes of Iron Deficiency
Are you unusually cold? When you have low iron levels, the body's red blood cells can't function properly causing you to feel cold more often than normal. Being extra cold could due from an Iron Deficiency because it slows your body's thyroid function and blocks its metabolism-boosting effects.
If you are a woman that suffers from having heavier periods than what's considered to be normal, then you may have low iron levels. Of course losing too much blood could also lead to exhaustion, headaches, and dizziness.
weight gain would definitely be a factor in those with iron deficiency's from the lack of energy and losing your metabolic boost.
How do you feel when you climbed a few steps? Are you short of breath with a pounding heart? I'm talking about at a normal pace, walking up a short flight of steps. Low oxygen levels can make you feel out of air doing things that you used to be able to normally handle.
Here are a list for some common symptoms from having low iron levels:
- No Energy/fatigue
- Cold hands and feet
- Heavy Periods
- Dizziness and Blackouts
- Weight gain
- Short of Breath
- Heart pounding
- Hair Loss
- Swollen Tongue
- Thyroid Disease
- Brittle nails
- Unusual cravings such as ice and clay
- Poor appetite
Natural Ways to conquer Low Iron
There are many natural ways you can conquer low iron. You can take iron supplements but there are other ways such as eating fruits high in iron, eating more lean meats and steamed vegetables. Dr. Axe says there are 5 natural treatments for Anemia symptoms;
- Nourish you spleen – Eat more Squash and green leafy vegetables
- Use probiotics for a healthy gut
- Consume iron-rich roods – Beef and Chicken Liver
- Reduce stress
- Supplements – B Vitamin Complex that include folate and Iron supplements
Foods Your Body Needs
There are foods your body needs most when iron levels are low. Taken from Dr. Axe, for the spleen we need foods from the squash family; pumpkin, acorn squash, butternut squash, spaghetti squash and those bright orange-colored foods. We also need green leafy vegetables like spinach, kale, romaine lettuce and chard.
Here are a list for other food options that are high in Iron:
- Grass Fed red meat
- Organic Pork / ham
- Organic Poultry
- Seafood / Fish
- Beans / Lentils / Peas
- Dark green leafy vegetables
- Dried fruit (cranberries, figs, raisins and apricots)
- Iron-fortified gluten free grains and breads
You will receive the most iron content in red meats, egg yolks and oysters, but rich iron content is also in whole grains, nuts, seeds, wheat germ, prunes and potato skins. Tomatoes are a good source for Vitamin C which can help with iron absorption when added to your meals. Other foods rich in Vitamin C are:
Devara's Smoothie Creations
From my research on high iron content foods, I've come up with two smoothies where you can get all the necessary iron your body needs in a day.
Men older than 18 and women older than 51 need 8 milligrams of daily iron. Younger women should get 18 milligrams daily and increase their intake to 27 milligrams during pregnancy.
Energize Me – Mega Iron Smoothie
20.7 mg Iron | 21.34 gr Protein | 484 Calories
6-8 Ice cubes
1 Cup Red Berries Special K cereal; 8.1 mg iron|2 gr pr |110 Cal
2 Teaspoons Almond Butter; 1.2 mg iron|4 gr pro|62 Cal
1 Cup Cooked Spinach (I used canned); 7 mg iron|4 gr pro|50 Cal
1 Cup Raspberries (Fresh or Frozen); .5 mg iron|1 gr pro|50 Cal
1 Tablespoon Chia Seeds (Soaked in water); .9 mg iron|3 gr pro|96 Cal
2 Teaspoons Turmeric; 1.82 mg iron|.34 gr pro|16 Cal
1 Cup Organic Vanilla Soy Milk (can alternate with Almond milk or coconut milk); 1 mg iron|7 gr pro|100 Cal
Add all the ingredients to your blender and blend until well mixed. drink and enjoy!
Iron Blast Smoothie
19.86 mg Iron | 21.34 gr Protein | 525 Calories
6-8 Ice Cubes
1 Teaspoon Chia Seeds (Soaked in Water); .3 mg iron|1 gr pro|32 Cal
1/2 Cup Oats; 3.3 mg iron|5 gr pro|150 Cal
1 Cup Red Berries Special K Cereal; 8.1 mg iron|2 gr pro|110 Cal
2 Teaspoons Turmeric; 1.82 mg iron|.34 gr pro|16 Cal
1 Tablespoon Cocoa; .7 mg iron|1 gr pro|15 Cal
1 Teaspoon Almond Butter; .6 mg iron|2 gr pro|31 Cal
1/2 Cup Stewed Tomato (I used canned); .1 mg iron|1 gr pro|40 Cal
1/2 Cup Cooked Spinach (I used canned); 3.5 mg iron|2 gr pro|25 Cal
1 Cup Organic Vanilla Soy Milk (Can alternate with Almond milk or Coconut milk); 1 mg iron|7 gr pro|100 Cal
Add all the ingredients to your blender and blend until well mixed. Drink and enjoy!
health Risks Associated with Low Iron Levels
When your body doesn't have enough iron, it interferes with your body's ability to make hemoglobin. This normally triggers the associated symptoms such as, weakness, shortness of breath and paleness, cold, and strange cravings for ice, chalk, or clay.
Because women lose blood during menstruation, they generally are at a greater risk of iron deficiency anemia. Low iron levels can lead to heart problems, problems during pregnancy, and growth problems for infants and children.
Heart Problems – Low iron can lead to a rapid or irregular heartbeat
Problems during pregnancy – Iron deficiency has been linked to premature births and low birth weight babies
Growth problems – Severe cases of low iron can lead to anemia and delayed growth and development in infants and children.
Seek Medical Advice
I'm not a doctor or nutritionist. My information in this post is simply taken from my own personal experience with low iron and a lot of research.
It is important to see your doctor and be tested for low iron so that you can be sure to receive the right treatment. Your doctor may recommend you to take iron supplements or be on a specific diet depending on your iron deficiency. Iron supplements can cause constipation and eating specific foods can help control it.
There are other methods for iron intake such as intravenously or in severe cases, blood transfusions. Your doctor can give you a treatment plan and diagnoses related to your test results.
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I hope you found this article helpful and easy to understand. My goal is to help others based on my research and own experiences. Please feel free to contact me or leave me comments in the reply box below for suggestions, questions, or concerns. Thanks for visiting my site and wishing you the best of health!
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It is obvious you have a real interest in low iron vs low energy. How do these smoothies taste? and also I cannot have gluten in my diet which I think cuts out the Special K.
Any suggestions for alternatives for gluten intolerant people?
I personally love all of my smoothie creations, but I found my two newest ones that are rich in iron not only great in taste, but also very hunger satisfying. I had to make some adjustments to the “Iron Blast” smoothie to get it right, but now I think it taste wonderful as well. I am working on trying to adding a gluten free smoothie and will let you know when I’ve found the right mixture that is also rich in iron. You are right, Special K is definitely not a gluten free product..
I’m sorry I can’t offer any suggestions at the moment, but I will be working on it.
Thanks for visiting my site and please come back for more great information.
Best of health,
Wow I knew red meats were good for you all around but love the fact that fish and friuts like cranberries can also help with low iron levels. I prefer to get my vitamins and minerals from food I eat as opposed to taking them in pill form because I am already on enough medications for my mental and physical health that my stomach is paying the consequence. Looking forward to more healthy food shares.
I agree with you entirely!! I would much rather get my vitamins and mineral in naturally through the food that I eat. I’m glad you found my article helpful and please do come back for more great information soon.
Thanks and Best of health,
Hi Devara, I somehow regularly lack iron if I don’t pay too much attention to what I eat (something to do with stress levels?). I just check the inside of my bottom eyelids regularly to see how pink or pale they are! Many thanks for all these tips, they’ll sure come in handy! 🙂
It’s great to hear from someone who has experienced low iron issues. Thanks for the extra tip on another way to check for signs of low iron. I did read about the eyelid trick somewhere and probably should’ve included it in my article.
Thanks for visiting and please come back for more great information.
Best of health,
It is always so nice to have new recipes for smoothies, I will definitely be trying some of yours listed here.
Thanks for the great advice.
Thanks for visiting my site and glad to hear your interest in my smoothie creations. Please let me know what you think once you’ve tried them.
Thanks and best of health,
Thank you for all the amazing tips. I have always strugglled with low iron and it does affect me in everyday life. Some of the symptoms I just try to overlook not thinking that they would be connected to low iron. I will definitely be trying out your tips and creations. Thank for all the helpful information.
Thanks for your feedback. I’m glad I can help. Having low iron is no fun and I hope my article helps you overcome your low iron issues. Please stop by for a visit again soon.