- The nutrient iron is an important component of hemoglobin
- Low iron levels can make you feel low, tired and weak
- Deficiency of iron could also lead to changes in the tongue
We all tend to focus on major nutrients like proteins, carbohydrates and fats but there are some other nutrients as well which are extremely important for your health. These nutrients include magnesium, iron and zinc. The nutrient iron is an important component of hemoglobin, the protein red blood cells that carries oxygen from the lungs and transports it throughout the body. Deficiency of iron can occur due to a number of reasons, some medical conditions, and blood loss or diet choices. If iron deficiency is severe, and not untreated for a long time it could lead to anemia (too little hemoglobin) and a decrease in the quantity, size and function of the red blood cells. Also, low iron levels can make you feel low, tired and weak, impact your concentration and cause dry skin and nails. It can also cause heart palpitations, shortness of breath and increase the risk for infections.
5 common symptoms of iron deficiency:
1. Extreme fatigue and exhaustion
Fatigue is one of the most common signs of iron deficiency. When the iron levels are low the body finds it difficult to carry the oxygen to your cells and in turn it affects your energy levels. People lacking enough iron in their blood may feel sluggish, weak, inactive and unable to focus.
2. Weak immune system
Iron plays a key role in a healthy immune system, so lower levels of the mineral iron can make someone more prone to infections and cold and flu.
3. Pale skin
Hemoglobin gives skin its red rosy color, so low levels of iron can cause the skin to become pale and dull. When red blood cells become low in iron, they become small and pale in the center thus making the skin also paler.
Also read: 7 Foods With The Highest Iron Content Ever
4. Swollen tongue
Deficiency of iron could also lead to changes in the tongue. Changes in the tongue include soreness or swelling. Even cracks on the side of the mouth are common among people with iron deficiency.
5. Hair loss
Iron deficiency, especially if it is prolonged, can cause hair loss. When hair follicles do not get enough oxygen, they go into a resting stage. This could lead to hair fall and the condition does not improve until anemia is improved.
However, iron deficiency can be cured by simply adding some iron-rich foods into your diet. Some iron-rich foods are leafy green vegetables like spinach, asparagus and broccoli. Legumes like lentils, chickpeas and beans. Healthy nuts and seeds, apricots, figs, dates, raisins, prunes and whole grains like quinoa are also rich in iron. Some animal-based foods like chicken, turkey, beef, pork and fatty fish are also rich in iron.
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.
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