Iron Vitamins and Supplements

Iron is an essential mineral necessary for many important metabolic functions in the body. It is part of hemoglobin, the oxygen-carrying component of the blood. Iron not attached to the hemoglobin in red blood cells is stored in the liver, bone marrow, spleen, and muscles.

A lack of iron leads to anemia. Symptoms of anemia include severe weakness and fatigue. Pregnant women, young women during their reproductive years, and children are most prone to acquiring anemia. Both moderate and severe anemia may be caused by significant or enduring blood loss started by a bleeding ulcer, menstruation, severe trauma, surgery, or a malignant tumor. Anemia may be due to an iron-poor diet, inability to absorb dietary iron, pregnancy, and the rapid growth that takes place during infancy, early childhood, and adolescence.

Conversely, too much iron in the body can cause a condition know as hemochromatosis, which can lead to diabetes, liver damage, and skin irregularities.

Benefits of Supplementing with Iron

The most important reason to take iron as a supplement is to alleviate anemia which is caused by too little iron in the body.

Dosage and Administration

Kelp can be one of several brown-colored seaweed species called Laminar. Kelp is a vegetable found only in the sea that possesses high concentrations of useful minerals including iodine, potassium, magnesium, calcium, and iron. Kelp may be useful as a supplement for making thyroid hormones, which are required for maintaining normal metabolism in all cells of the body.

It is common for pre-menopausal women to experience iron deficiency with iron supplementation. However, a small 18 mg daily dosage of iron is often adequate to prevent such deficiency.