Asked by isabellewahanda
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You need to find out which type of anaemia, is it related to iron, folate or B12 deficiency for instance. Problems may be due to not producing enough red blood cells or from losing too many, so heavy or prolonged periods could be a cause.
Multivitamins may not include iron, or may only have small amounts depending on brand, but it sounds like your diet should provide a good amount. Some dietary aspects could reduce your ability to absorb iron from your food though, phytates from unleven breads like pita bread and also drinking lots of tea or coffee could be a problem. You also require vitamin C to aid absorption of iron. Vit C levels can be reduced by smoking, stress and a whole range of other factors, so you may benefit from fairly significant supplemental levels.
Hope this helps
Andrew Pallas ND DO MRN
To add to the great answer by Andrew Pallas, both iron and B12 anaemia can be related to low vitamin B6 status or poor conversion to its active form P-5-P, worth discussing with a nutritional therapist......
I agree that it is important to confirm iron deficiency as opposed to other causes of anaemia by checking iron status with ferritin/TIBC and also looking at the MCV/MCH portion of your full blood count- low MCV and/or low MCH suggest iron deficiency anaemia.
If iron deficiency anaemia is chronic despite adequate nutrition, adequate iron supplementation and vitamin C it is useful to exclude coeliac disease which can be very subtle and elusive with minimal or no bowel symptoms.
If there is no iron deficiency but you have a low MCV/MCH it is worth excluding thalassaemia traits which are in fact conditions of anaemia with iron overload and iron is not indicated. If MCV/MCH are higher than normal then you need to check folate/B12 levels.In any case it is good to confirm iron deficiency before you go on to supplement with iron as iron can be a pro-oxidant.
About maximizing iron absorption:I agree about the phytates preventing iron absorption.Please also bear in mind that calcium supplements prevent iron absorption if taken together and that cases of resistant to treatment iron deficiency can be associated with co-existing copper deficiency.
I hope this helps
Dr Theodora Mantzourani
I agree with the other answers, but would strongly suggest that you do not just experiment with the multivitamins, diet and google all the conditions that gor mentioned, but book a consultation with a nutritional therapist. Since we are all unique, an nutritional therapist will be able to look into your medical history, diet, lifestyle habits, run some tests and give you a very personalised advice including your diet and supplement programme.
You are more than welcome to get in touch with me - I can see you in person or via skype.
eating out of and cooking in iron utensils is a cheap and easy way to counter anaemia
I suffered anaemia for years, I was always fatigue and very moody my diet was very poor. I use iron supplement and folic acid, I was told to eat beetroot, liver, tomatoes, gabbage. red meat is rich in iron. Now I have a tiny chocolate daily to give me energy, it works for me. good luck.
Well it seems andrew pallas and charlotte wattsheath have already provided the answer, i would get your levels checked for sure with your GP though, aswell as dietry issues there are physical ones which can cause anaemia, best to rule everything out.
Try eating seaweeds which are also known as sea vegetables. These contain easily absorbed iron - some more than others such as dulse. Easy to add to dishes although start introducing gradually. I have written about seaweeds on my blog page - see link below
Best advice is to take up a good breathing exercise type like yoga (avoid inversions if you get dizzy or have low blood pressure, which anemic people tend to have). Charge your metabolism with multivitamins and minerals (a good natural brand) and eat a variety of fresh uncooked organic vegetables and some meat (both white and some red - as long as it is organic).