deficiency is one of the most common and widespread nutritional disorder in the
world. It’s a major cause of anaemia and is more prevalent in developing
indicates that approximately 80% of people in the world do not have enough iron
in their bodies, and about 30% of the population suffers from anaemia due to
according to the World Health Organization, iron deficiency is comparatively
higher in women, especially those in the childbearing stage, with the disorder
affecting 1 in 7 women worldwide.
the deficiency in women is caused by various factors such as heavy menstruation,
pregnancy, and breastfeeding, poor diet is the leading cause.
Deficiency and Poor Diet
to WHO, bad diet is one of the major causes of anemia in women.
like with other nutrients, women who eat a diet with little or no iron are at a
high risk of becoming iron deficient. There are many reasons to this;
vegetarian diet is one that excludes meat and sometimes other animal products.
This is a diet that mainly consists of fruits, vegetables, seeds, grains,
pulses, and nuts.
problem with a vegetarian diet is that it consists of non-heme iron which is
poorly absorbed in the body, unlike heme iron which is well-absorbed.
indicate that there are 140% more female vegetarians than males. This means
that women who are vegetarian are more likely to become iron deficient than
Ignoring Rich Iron
Sources such as Red Meat
women (like everyone else) tend to avoid red meat due to the health risks
associated with this type of meat. Instead, they focus on eating fish, pork,
poultry, and eggs.
meat is considered as one of the highest sources of iron and ignoring it only
increases the risk of iron deficiency.
red meat in the diet is therefore important to avoid the deficiency.
Excessive Amounts of Caffeine
interferes with iron absorption in the body.
study has found that excessive consumption of coffee reduces iron absorption by
as much as 50% while tea reduces its uptake by as much as 60%.
tannins in both beverages adversely affect iron availability in the body by
interfering with its absorption, causing a severe deficiency.
means that women who drink excessive amounts of coffee/tea on a daily basis
increase their risk becoming deficient in iron.
eating, under eating, and counting calories are some of the major causes of
iron deficiency in women. This is because such practice limits the amount of
nutrients and iron the body needs to function properly.
practice is particularly common in women who are looking to lose weight or
maintain a certain body weight.
are some cultural groups that avoid iron-rich sources due to certain beliefs.
Women in such cultures are often at a higher risk of getting severe deficiency
as a result.
Iron Deficiency in Women
suffering from this disorder as a result of a bad diet should consider
following a healthy diet to avoid the many adverse health effects.
iron deficiency has been found to lead to anaemia, heart failure, and enlarged
heart muscle. In pregnant women, the disorder can lead to premature birth or
low birth weight.
a diet rich in both heme and non heme iron, increasing Vitamin C intake
(Vitamin C improves iron absorption), and taking iron supplements can help
restore iron levels in the body, not to mention reverse its effects.
Seek medical assistance if necessary.
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