What does low iron saturation mean?
Iron saturation refers to the amount of iron that is present in the blood. Low iron saturation means that there is a low amount of iron in the blood. Transferrin binds to and transports iron, while ferritin stores this mineral in the body.
What causes low iron saturation?
Iron deficiency anemia is usually caused by blood loss (eg, gastrointestinal, menstrual) but may be due to hemolysis, malabsorption, or increased demand for iron (eg, in pregnancy, lactation, periods of rapid growth in children).
What are the symptoms of low iron saturation?
Symptoms of iron-deficiency anemia are related to decreased oxygen delivery to the entire body and may include: Being pale or having yellow “sallow” skin. Unexplained fatigue or lack of energy. Shortness of breath or chest pain, especially with activity.
How is low iron saturation treated?
Iron deficiency can’t be corrected overnight. You may need to take iron supplements for several months or longer to replenish your iron reserves. Generally, you’ll start to feel better after a week or so of treatment. Ask your doctor when to have your blood rechecked to measure your iron levels.
How do you increase iron saturation levels?
To increase iron absorption, include foods that are high in vitamin C, or ascorbic acid, in the same meal as iron-rich foods. For example, eat a salad containing peppers and tomatoes with a steak or lentils. Or, drink a glass of orange juice alongside a fortified breakfast cereal.
What is high iron saturation?
The serum transferrin saturation test measures the amount of iron bound to transferrin — a protein that carries iron in the blood. Saturation values of more than 45% are too high. The serum ferritin test measures the amount of iron that the body has stored.
How can I increase my iron saturation?
Choose iron-rich foods
- Red meat, pork and poultry.
- Dark green leafy vegetables, such as spinach.
- Dried fruit, such as raisins and apricots.
- Iron-fortified cereals, breads and pastas.
What foods to avoid if iron is low?
Some foods can make it harder for your body to absorb iron. These include coffee, tea, milk, egg whites, fiber, and soy protein. Try to avoid these foods if you have iron deficiency anemia.