Can a man get too much iron
I began taking an iron supplement because I thought I might have a case of running-induced anemia. It seemed to help, but now I wonder if I should continue taking the supplement or let it go. Am I getting too much iron? Diet and Fitness Expert Dr. Melina Jampolis Physician Nutrition Specialist.SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: Preventing and Diagnosing Iron Overload
SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: Too Much Iron In Your BloodContent:
Too much or too little of a good thing can be a problem. Too little iron in your body can make you fatigue easily or become anemic and too much iron can damage internal organs and increase the risk for other illnesses like diabetes.
So how much iron do men need to have just the right balance? Iron is needed for your body to produce hemoglobin. This is important because the hemoglobin in your red blood cells carries the oxygen from your lungs to all parts of your body. Finding the right balance for your health can be tricky. The normal hemoglobin range is On average, a man only needs to consume 10 mg of iron per day to maintain healthy levels. Men tend to store more iron in their bodies than women, which is why iron deficiency is rare in men.
Some men may have higher iron stores due to genetics. Hemochromatosis is a hereditary condition and causes your body to absorb too much iron from the food you eat. This can cause life-threatening conditions, such as liver disease, heart problems and diabetes. Men with hemochromatosis are much more likely to be diagnosed with the effects of excess iron than women, and men also tend to develop problems from the excess iron at a younger age.
The only way to reduce iron levels for people with hemochromatosis is by donating whole blood or double red cells on a regular basis. A whole blood donation results in a loss of mg of iron. Men with hemochromatosis often report being more energetic after donating blood, and some even describe feeling like they had a partial oil change in their body. Some people never have symptoms, but if you are experiencing joint pain, abdominal pain, fatigue, weakness or have diabetes, heart failure or liver failure, you may want to test your iron levels and talk with your doctor.
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Dan Eberts July 02, Iron in the body Iron is needed for your body to produce hemoglobin. Excess Iron Hemochromatosis Some men may have higher iron stores due to genetics.
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Hemochromatosis in Men
Haemochromatosis—also known as inherited iron overload—is a condition that causes the body to absorb and store excess amounts of iron. Sufferers may experience a range of symptoms including fatigue, joint pain, weakness, weight loss and abdominal pain. Over time, the excess iron accumulates in specific areas of the body, eventually causing damage to tissues and organs including the liver and heart. This can result in complications such as liver disease cirrhosis , liver cancer, heart failure, diabetes, pigmented skin, arthritis, early menopause and impotence.
Too much or too little of a good thing can be a problem. Too little iron in your body can make you fatigue easily or become anemic and too much iron can damage internal organs and increase the risk for other illnesses like diabetes. So how much iron do men need to have just the right balance? Iron is needed for your body to produce hemoglobin.
Iron overload disorder: All you need to know
One of the primary causes of high iron levels in men is due to the genetic condition Hemochromatosis. Also known as Iron Overload, this hereditary disorder causes too much iron to be absorbed during digestion. Over time, iron levels can build up in the body and result in the development of symptoms and complications with health. When it comes to Hemochromatosis, there is a stereotype that too much iron in the blood is a symptom that is primarily seen in men. And while this presumption ignores how many women are affected by iron overload, there are quite a number of symptoms of iron overload unique to men. Middle age is the most common time of diagnosis for men with hereditary hemochromatosis or iron overload. The problem is that often those non-specific hemochromatosis symptoms in men are blamed on something else. Even worse and guys, you know we do this , men with high iron might not ever seek medical care.
Many people are aware that low levels of iron in their body can lead anaemia, with symptoms such as fatigue. But few realise that too much iron can result in a potentially fatal condition. Normally, if we have enough iron in our body, then no further iron is absorbed from the diet, and our iron levels remain relatively constant. But the body also has no way of excreting excess iron. In a condition called hereditary haemochromatosis, the most common cause of iron overload, the mechanism to detect sufficient iron in the body is impaired and people can go on absorbing iron beyond the normal required amount.
Iron overload disorders are a group of medical conditions that cause the body to store excess iron. The body cannot excrete excess iron, so it stores it in certain organs, notably the liver, heart, and pancreas, which can lead to organ damage. Damage to the pancreas can cause diabetes.
Excess Iron: A Health Risk?
Not long ago, the conventional wisdom was that iron and iron tonics were the best way to avoid iron deficiency anemia and to counteract fatigue and low energy. Of course, we all need iron to make hemoglobin, the oxygen-carrying red pigment of blood. But iron is one of the few minerals we cannot eliminate, and accumulations in the body can rise to toxic levels. Iron is an oxidizing agent that can increase the risk of cancer and damage the heart and the arteries.SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: How to Know If You're at Risk of Iron Overload and What to Do ...
In decades past, many parents worried that children who were picky eaters would develop iron-deficiency anemia. Now baby foods, infant formula and many other child-friendly foods, like breakfast cereals, breads, rice and pasta, are fortified with iron. Today iron deficiency is more likely in infants who are exclusively breast-fed, young children who consume too much milk, menstruating and pregnant women, vegans and strict vegetarians , and people who take medications that cause internal bleeding or interfere with iron absorption. These days, more attention is being paid to the opposite problem: iron overload, which studies indicate can damage internal organs and may increase the risk of diabetes , heart attack and cancer , particularly in older people. In examining more than 1, white Americans ages 67 to 96 participating in the Framingham Heart Study, researchers found that only about 3 percent had deficient levels of iron in their blood or stored in their bodies, but 13 percent had levels considered too high.
A Host of Ills When Iron’s Out of Balance
The liver is your largest internal organ. About the size of a football, it's located mainly in the upper right portion of your abdomen, beneath the diaphragm and above your stomach. Hereditary hemochromatosis he-moe-kroe-muh-TOE-sis causes your body to absorb too much iron from the food you eat. Excess iron is stored in your organs, especially your liver, heart and pancreas. Too much iron can lead to life-threatening conditions, such as liver disease, heart problems and diabetes.
Individuals with DIOS are helped by phlebotomy, diet and exercise. Iron overload is an excess too much iron in the body. Excess iron in vital organs, even in mild cases of iron overload, increases the risk for liver disease cirrhosis, cancer , heart attack or heart failure, diabetes mellitus, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, metabolic syndrome, hypothyroidism, hypogonadism, numerous symptoms and in some cases premature death. Iron overload can be inherited genetic or acquired by receiving numerous blood transfusions, getting iron shots or injections, or consuming high levels of supplemental iron. Some of the genetic disorders that result in iron overload include are hereditary hemochromatosis all types , African iron overload, sickle cell disease, thalassemia, X-linked sideroblastic anemia, enzyme deficiencies pyruvate kinase; glucosephosphate dehydrogenase and very rare protein transport disorders aceruloplasminemia and atransferrinemia.
Could I be getting too much iron?
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