The 8 best iron supplements, according to a nutritionist

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Iron – an essential mineral that our body needs to grow and develop. This is the fuel our body uses to produce hemoglobin. a red blood cell protein responsible for transporting oxygen from the lungs to all parts of the body, and myoglobin, a protein that provides oxygen to muscles. In addition, it is crucial for the production of hormones and connective tissue. 

Most people absorb the iron they need without supplements. However, certain groups of people are more likely to iron deficiency. especially those who do not get enough in their diet, such as vegans and vegetarians. Teen girls and women with heavy menstruation. pregnant women and adolescents, babies (especially if they are premature or have low birth weight), frequent blood donors, and people with cancer, gastrointestinal disorders, or heart failure are also more likely to be deficient.

Iron deficiency is one of the most common eating disorders in the world, affecting about two billion people. without enough iron, a person can develop iron deficiency anemia. While short-term iron deficiency may go unnoticed, because the body consumes iron already accumulated, symptoms such as fatigue, brittle nails, and dizziness may occur after iron is excreted.

Before taking an iron supplement, you should find out if you are iron deficient, which can be determined with a simple blood test in your doctor’s office. Consult your doctor to determine if iron supplements are indicated and what dosage is appropriate to meet your individual needs.

If you have actually established that you are iron deficient, you should consider a few things before taking a supplement. Take calcium separately, as it may inhibit the absorption of iron. Consider taking iron with vitamin C. as it can improve iron absorption. Look for other ingredients or nutrients included in the iron supplement to make sure you don’t get too much particular vitamin. Talk to your doctor about the right dose and the best type of iron for you.

We research dozens of iron supplements and evaluate them by reviews, dosage, form, type of iron, and added ingredients. Each of the supplements selected in this article was defined as the best of these factors.

Here are the best iron supplements on the market today.

Final Verdict

Fe slow iron tablets (view on Amazon) are the gold standard in hematopoiesis, recommended by doctors as a safe, effective and side-effect-free method of administering high doses of the mineral. While not as cheap as some of the other iron products on our list, they offer two to three times more iron than most. In other words, you get more pleasure for your money.

What to look for in an iron supplement

Budget:

The cost of iron varies significantly, from $ 1.80 to over $ 25 per month. While all the different types, brands and shapes we offer are effective in supplying iron, keep in mind that you will pay more for something made with whole foods or certified organic. 

Supplement form:

Iron supplements come in many forms, such as liquids, capsules, tablets, and in some cases, intravenous iron administration. The most concentrated forms of over-the-counter are tablets and capsules, which give you maximum return on your costs. However, if you have trouble swallowing the pill, gum and liquid are other acceptable options. 

Iron type:

Iron supplements come in many forms, such as ferrous sulfate, bisglycinate iron and ferrous glycinate. It is important to note that there is a difference between “ferrous sulfate” and “elemental iron”. For example, a supplement may contain 325 milligrams (mg) of ferrous sulfate and 65 mg of elemental iron. Fortunately, elemental iron appears in the Supplement Data Panel, so consumers don’t have to calculate how much iron comes with different forms of iron supplements.

Some forms of iron are the best digested on an empty stomach (ferrous sulfate), while others are better absorbed in the presence of food. The type of iron that works best for you will depend on your needs, medical history, and any gastrointestinal disorders that may arise as a result of taking an iron supplement. It is important to work with your health care provider to find the best possible way for you.

Dose:

Before you start taking any iron supplement, it is crucial to figure out how much you need to take. Talk to your medical expert to determine a dose that is safe but effective for you. If you have severe anemia, you may want to consider foods that offer a higher dose of iron. 

Additional Ingredients:

In general, it is best to keep the list of ingredients as small as possible; however, when it comes to extra iron, ingredients such as vitamin C are often added, which can aid absorption. In many cases, supplements that contain additional ingredients can be more expensive than others that simplify the process by focusing only on nutrients.

Common additional ingredients are vitamins, minerals, probiotics, and enzymes. Think about how you can consume these other nutrients from food to save money and simplify things. 

Frequently asked questions

  • Although iron is found in a variety of foods, such as leafy green vegetables and dark beans, this plant-based form does not contain heme iron and is generally not as easy to digest as heme or animal-based iron, which is found in red and white meats, eggs, and seafood. Many people who do not consume animal products have an increased risk of iron deficiency.

  • If you are iron deficient, you should consult your doctor to choose the amount of iron to be added based on your blood test. In general, iron needs vary by person and age. Adult men need 8 milligrams per day, while menstruating women ages 19 to 50 need 18 milligrams per day. Once a woman enters menopause, the need is reduced to 8 milligrams per day.

    The recommended daily amount increases during pregnancy and lactation, and the recommended daily dose is 1.8 times higher for vegetarians than for people who eat meat.

    Tolerable upper levels of iron intake (UL) from food and supplements were established based on the amounts of iron associated with gastrointestinal effects after additional iron intake. ULS applies to healthy babies, children and adults. Doctors sometimes prescribe doses higher than UL, for example, when people with iron-deficiency anemia require higher doses to replenish their iron stores. You may need to take iron supplement doses throughout the day to optimize absorption and minimize side effects. Always consult your doctor before you start taking iron supplements and be sure to get specific recommendations on iron type and dosage.

  • Yes, taking too much iron can cause liver disease, abdominal pain, joint pain, heart attack, and an increased risk of diabetes. High doses of iron can also reduce zinc absorption.

  • Common side effects include constipation, abdominal pain, nausea, and vomiting. You may notice a change in stool color after you start taking supplements. Iron can darken stool, and there’s usually nothing wrong with that. However, it is important to inform your doctor about any changes in the color of your stools, as darker stools may also indicate bowel bleeding.

  • If your doctor recommended iron supplements during your wait, be sure to consider the form, dosage, and side effects when purchasing. The slow-release pill may be better tolerated and will help avoid common complaints during pregnancy, such as constipation and nausea.

    Keep in mind that your prenatal period is likely to contain iron, so consider this amount when choosing additional supplements.

  • Antacids contain calcium, which can inhibit iron absorption. Also, avoid drinking milk or taking calcium at the same time as an iron supplement.

  • Plants such as nuts, beans, and vegetables, as well as iron-fortified foods such as some cereals, breads, and other cereals, contain only non-heme iron, while meat, seafood, and poultry contain both heme and non-heme iron. Heme iron has a higher bioavailability than non-heme iron, meaning humans can it is better to absorb and use heme iron

  • Iron may interact with certain medicines, and some medicines may have side effects on iron levels. Gastric acid is an important component of iron absorption. For this reason, people who take proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), may have a suboptimal response to iron supplement intake. Simultaneous intake of iron and levothyroxine (Levothyroid, Levoxil, Synthroid, Tyrosint, and Unitroid), a medication used to treat hypothyroidism, goiter, and thyroid cancer, may lead to a clinically significant decrease in the effectiveness of levothyroxine in some patients.

    For more information on medications that may affect iron supplements, consult your doctor or visit the web-NIH Division of Dietary Supplements website

What The Experts Say

“For those who experience constipation while taking supplements, I recommend focusing on good hydration and fiber intake. Try to drink at least 2 liters of water a day. Fiber content recommendations for the average adult range from about 25 to 35 grams per day.  When increasing the amount of fiber in your diet, be sure to do so gradually and be sure to distribute it throughout the day for optimal tolerance.” — Mr. Liuhuabing, RD

Why Trust Medication information?

A personal note on my previously written recommendations. As a nutritionist, I try to recommend supplements, including iron. I took the time to research the most up-to-date iron supplement recommendations and reviewed various brands and products. I believe that the supplements in the round are produced by reliable brands that care about the purity of the product and are made from high quality ingredients. – Eliza Savage, Miss, RD, CDN

Sidney Green, MS, RD, contributed answers to frequently asked questions and key information about purchasing iron supplements.

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