Q: What does Iron do for the body?
Iron is an essential mineral that helps red blood cells carry oxygen from your lungs to the rest of the body. Iron is contained inside red blood cells and is an important part of hemoglobin. If you are iron deficient, your body isn’t able to create enough red blood cells. The lack of oxygen carrying healthy red blood cells can make you feel constantly fatigued, even if your hemoglobin levels are healthy. Iron supplementation is suggested for pregnant and menstruating women, people diagnosed with anemia, and those who are iron-deficient.
Q: What happens when you are low on iron?
Iron is stored in the hemoglobin of red blood cells and acts as an oxygen transporter to all the muscles in the body. If you are iron-deficient, your body is not able to create more red blood cells and can cause you to feel constantly fatigued. Without a healthy level of hemoglobin, oxygen won’t reach your muscles and tissues efficiently and could lead to anemia.
Q: Does iron cause weight gain?
Iron will not cause you to gain weight, but an iron deficiency could contribute to weight gain. Iron is essential for carrying oxygen to important muscles and tissues of the body, and it is also essential for thyroid function. An underactive thyroid has been associated with unexplained weight gain. Hypothyroidism (low thyroid function) and iron deficiency at times go hand in hand.
If you are diagnosed with Hypothyroidism, the lack of sufficient thyroid hormones impacts the production of red blood cells and can cause anemia. Conversely, there have been recent studies
correlating iron-deficiency to be a cause of Hypothyroidism, and vice versa.