Iron is the most important mineral which is present in each cell of blood. It helps in building up hemoglobin and carrying oxygen to every cell of body during respiration. Red Blood cells (RBC) are the fuel that is needed by body for respiration and exchange of oxygen and carbon Di-oxide within cells, these are carried with the help of iron in Blood found in the form of haemoglobin.
Foods rich in Iron: Iron in blood are found in two forms one is Heme iron which is mainly present in animal derivative like red meats, fish and poultry and are mostly is absorb-able by body while the other one is Non-heme iron which is present in cereals, leafy veggies, raisins, legumes, seeds, vegetables and are lesser absorbed by body.
Side Effects of Iron: Iron deficiency and excessive iron content can be harmful and hence lead to many side effects.
Iron Deficiency: Iron deficiency can lead to lack of energy, shortness of breath, headache, irritability, dizziness or weight loss. Physical signs of iron deficiency are a pale tongue and spoon-shaped nails.
Risk of iron deficiency can be in:
- Women who are menstruating, especially if they have heavy periods
- Pregnant women or who have just had a baby
- Long-distance runners
- People with any type of bleeding in the intestines (for example, a bleeding ulcer)
- People who frequently donate blood
Excess of Iron: Excess of iron can lead to following –
- Weight loss
- Shortness of breath
- Grayish color to the skin