Recent studies suggest that 30% of women in the US experience low iron. As a Naturopathic Doctor, I work with patients to help optimize their health and I screen for low iron but also look for suboptimal levels of iron on blood work. I usually conduct this testing through blood work of a range of iron markers such as: serum iron, total iron binding capacity, complete blood count, ferritin, folic acid, vitamin B 12 testing. Having low iron or even suboptimal iron levels and stores in the body can manifest in the body in many different ways. Some of these include:
1- Feeling fatigued/ exhausted abnormally or having low energy
2- Shortness of breath
3- Looking pale
4- Craving ice
6- Heart palpitations
8-Brittle or spoon shaped fingernails.
9-Having low mood or getting sick often
Once I run the appropriate testing, I work with patients in an holistic integrative approach to counsel them on ways to increase iron through diet (such as: adding more green leafy vegetables,dark chocolate, legumes) . In addition I work with them to recommend oral gentle iron supplements that can help increase their serum iron levels without constipating patients or giving them other side effects. Furthermore, depending on how low the iron levels are, I can also give patients a series of iron injections to help increase absorption and minimize side effects.
If you’re experiencing any of the symptoms above, schedule your appointment with Dr. Hasan, Naturopathic Doctor today!