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What Are the 5 Stages of Iron Deficiency Anaemia?

Did you know that 33% of the world’s population suffers from anemia? In 50% of cases, the primary cause is iron deficiency. As you can understand from its name, this condition occurs when a person lacks the required amount of iron in his/her body. From low intake of iron-rich food items to blood loss through menstruation, various factors can cause this nutritional deficiency. The body’s inability to absorb iron is one of the major causes of this disorder.

Iron Deficiency Develops Through Five Stages

From mild to severe, the deficiency progresses step by step and not abruptly. Hence, if you are aware of the specific symptoms of each different phase, it will be possible for you to address the deficiency at the earliest.

Stage One – Depletion of Iron Storage

The early-stage deficiency occurs when your body starts “asking” for more iron than what you consume. A persistent mismatch between demand and supply leads to the depletion of the iron that is stored in the bone marrow.

As the body starts losing its stored iron, it starts absorbing more dietary iron to compensate for this loss.

A lab taste during this stage may show the hemoglobin (Hb) and serum iron to be at a normal level, but the serum ferritin level is expected to fall below a level of less than 20 ng/mL. With this condition leading to sharp compensatory iron absorption, there will be a rise in transferrin level.

At this stage, the body still has enough iron to fight the progressive depletion. Anemia does not set in yet, although the affected person is at risk of developing the same.

Stage Two – Mild Deficiency Sets In

This stage is characterized by a drop in the level of transfer iron or Transferrin. Though the transferrin level rises in the depletion stage,  during the second stage of iron deficiency, transferrin saturation decreases. Hemoglobin level is still not affected but red blood cells start shrinking in size during this stage.

Stage Three – Anemia Develops

Anemia is a condition characterized by an alarmingly low level of hemoglobin. This is the stage when the hemoglobin level starts to decrease rapidly.

Stage Four – Microcytosis and Then Hypochromia Develop.

Microcytosis does not only cause your body to have lesser red blood cells but also the blood cells are smaller in size. On the other hand, due to Hypochromia, the red blood cells start losing oxygen-carrying pigments and the blood starts looking colorless.

Stage Five – Severe Hemoglobin Deficiency

In the last stage of its progression, iron deficiency is at its most severe form, causing hemoglobin to drop drastically. With blood cells becoming fewer, smaller and carrying a smaller number of hemoglobins, this causes severe anemia.

Anemia manifests itself through a variety of symptoms include pallor, extreme fatigue and weakness, loss of energy, lack of interest, nagging headaches, and compromised immunity.

iron deficiency anemia

People often take iron supplements to deal with iron deficiency. They may be helpful in increasing the supply of iron in your body, but not without side effects. What if you could find a solution that is iron-free? IronCatch is a supplement that is free of iron and as a result free of any side effects. Its formula is designed to bolster your body’s capacity to absorb iron from natural food. People who used IronCatch testified to have seen a remarkable improvement in their energy level within two weeks of taking this supplement.

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Iron Deficiency in Athletes – Causes and Treatment

Sportspersons, to us, are synonymous with health and vitality. They are the epitome of energy. On the other hand, iron deficiency, to laymen, is often the taxonomy for a person with poor physical health. Because of this perception, it’s difficult for us to put ‘iron deficiency’ and ‘athletes’ into the same bracket. Even though it’s hard to believe, sportspersons, especially runners, are more susceptible to this deficiency.  According to a study published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 50 percent of female endurance athletes are deficient in iron, while for men, this value is estimated at 17 percent. 

Some athletes are particularly susceptible to suffering from an iron deficiency. They include:

  • Female athletes, particularly in the menstruating age group
  • Athletes who are on a purely vegetarian diet
  • Athletes with low energy intake 
  • Adolescent athletes 

Iron deficiency can be a serious threat to the career of an endurance sportsperson. If it remains untreated for a long time, it leads to severe fatigue. Iron-deficient athletes get easily exhausted, and gradually they start losing the motivation to practice harder or perform better. Hence, it’s important to know why athletes suffer from iron deficiency.

What causes iron deficiency in athletes?

When everyone loses iron through sweat, urine, menstruation, and the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, for athletes, the rate of loss is much higher. Any high-intensity, high-endurance exercise increases the rate of iron losses by nearly 70%. These physical activities destroy red blood cells, especially in the areas near feet, resulting in a shorter red blood cell life span.

Female athletes are even more susceptible to the iron deficiency than their male counterparts due to their menstrual blood loss.

Insufficient dietary iron intake is another reason for iron deficiency. The human body is not very effective at absorbing dietary iron. Those on a vegetarian or vegan diet are more at risk of becoming iron deficient, as the body is even slower in absorbing non-heme iron found in plants. 

Iron Deficiency in Athletes

Treatment for Iron Deficiency

Fortunately, there are ways to deal with iron deficiency, and all treatment regimens aim at increasing the iron intake into the body. Oral supplements can significantly help you meet the iron deficiency in your body. In more severe cases, intramuscular or intravenous injections are used to provide your body with more iron. On top of all these, iron-deficient athletes are advised to consume iron-fortified products or naturally iron-rich products as part of their daily diet. Thus, dietary enhancement remains the fundamental strategy in iron deficiency treatment.

How About Embracing an All-Natural Solution?

While ingesting oral supplements is an important first step towards fighting iron deficiency, it has its side effects. At IronCatch, we have innovated a side-effect-free supplement that is better tolerated than any standard variety. Composed of all-natural ingredients like fish oligosaccharides, vitamins, and minerals, our gluten-free formulation provides athletes with a reliable way to address their symptoms at the root. IronCatch happens to be the first iron-free formulation to deal with iron deficiency. This food supplement can elevate the iron levels in the body by increasing the absorption of dietary iron by at least 3-5 times. It also profoundly increases the absorption rate of this metal from everyday food consumption.

Get in touch with our consultants to know more about our clinically proven supplements because no disease should hinder your goals.

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Low Red Blood Cells? Find Out If You Have Anemia

The most common reason of anemia is iron deficiency. Iron is a vital micro element in human body that is responsible for the formation of hemoglobin. It is a protein that carries oxygen to all parts of the body. About one third of iron is stored as hemosiderin and ferritin in spleen, bone marrow and the liver.

iron-deficiency

When someone develops anemia, the person is said to be anemic and is usually more tired, cold and looks pale. There can be different reasons what causes anemia but each of them causes a drop in the circulation of red blood cells. It can happen because any of the following reasons –

  • the body fails to produce enough hemoglobin
  • the body is producing the protein but cannot work properly
  • there is low red blood cells count in the body
  • the body breaks down the RBC is too fast

How common is anemia?

More than 2 billion people in the world, which is approximately 30% of the total population, suffers from anemia. It is more common in countries that have fewer resources. More than 3 million Americans are estimated to suffer from this disorder.

Who can be affected?

The truth is, anyone can suffer from iron deficiency. But iron deficiency anemia can affect the following people the most –

  • Women – because monthly menstruation often cause excessive blood loss. The condition can worsen if she has a condition like fibroids  Children – kids below 2 years of age need iron for their growth so any less intake can cause the condition
  • People over 65 – they are like to suffer from iron poor diet and for them it can even lead to a chronic condition
  • People living on blood thinners such as aspirin can have the deficiency of iron

Signs and symptoms

Most common symptoms of iron anemia deficiency includes but not limited to –

  • headache
  • dizziness or constant weakness
  • dry skin, paleness or bruises on skin
  • restless leg syndrome
  • fast heartbeat

Decreased absorption of food

This is one of the main reasons for iron deficiency. For people whose diet do not include heme iron is one of the major reasons for iron deficiency anemia. Heme iron can be absorbed more effectively than the non-heme iron which are available in plant based foods. Although Vitamin C and B12, zinc and folate can help in facilitating non heme absorption, you have to be careful about your diet chart which actually interfere with the iron absorption rate.

Proton pump inhibitors, antacids, calcium supplements have been studied to inhibit iron absorption in the body.

How is it diagnosed and detected?

Normally, there are tests that check the hemoglobin amount in the body. Hematocrit provides the percentage measure of the RBC in the blood which indicates the amount of iron reserve in the body. It also helps to understand the iron binding capacity. There are some tests which is used to calculate transferrin iron saturation which is a measure of the iron in the transit in the serum.

Sometimes a complete blood count, zinc protoporphyrin, reticulocyte hemoglobin content are done to test and diagnose the body condition.

Treatment

Treating iron anemia deficiency can have different approaches depending on the condition and the threat of anemia. There can be an increased demand if you are in a growing spurt or are pregnant. If you have any blood loss condition such as heavy periods or elaborate surgeries, the interference with iron absorption will be different. For some, the approaches can be as simple as change in the diet while for others there can be a need to take iron supplements.

If you suspect you have iron deficit, take the help of a medical professional. Iron catch is one of the top iron supplements which are made from various vitamins and minerals and fish oligosaccharides that can help to promote normal iron absorption. With the first iron free iron deficiency solution, you can get improved iron absorption rate in the body. People reported fast and effective results within a month of consumption. Although there is no stated side effects like any other typical iron supplement, you should speak to your health care provider before taking it regularly.