Iron Deficiency: Five Surprising Things It Can Cause
A lack of iron can lead to something called anemia, which is a condition that can only be confirmed with a blood test from your doctor. Why should you care if your iron levels are getting low? Because it can have far-reaching repercussions on your physical and mental health. Here are just some of the side-effects from having low iron:
Low energy: Iron is necessary for your body to transport oxygen through the blood. And when you don’t have enough oxygen making its way through your body, you feel fatigued.
Strange cravings: We aren’t talking about a desire to eat ice cream or pizza. A condition called pica is when you want to eat non-food items like ice, dirt, glue or hair. One of the causes of pica? An iron deficiency.
Restless leg syndrome: This condition hits people at night and can result in an irresistible urge to move their legs and feet. As a result, it can have a pretty big impact on quality of sleep.
Unexplained anxiety: Because low iron leads to low oxygen, your sympathetic nervous system gets revved up and your heart will start to race—two things that give you a fight-or-flight feeling. As a result, your anxiety levels can skyrocket without any real reason.
Paleness: Your too-light skin might not be due to excessive sunscreen use—it can also be caused by low iron since the a decreased number of red blood cells causes pallor.
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