Gluten Free Guerrillas
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Iron deficiency anaemia

Hi I've been on iron tablets since before Xmas but iron levels not improving! Recently seen articles on the web that drinking red wine, tea and dairy products can affect take in of iron, however Dietician recommends drinking milk and eating hard cheese daily to keep calcium levels up! Any suggestions please? Am meeting my Doctor next week to discuss!

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Sorry cant be very much help other than to say that I have read that Vitamin C helps with the absorption of Iron, also my doctor advised that ferrous gluconate are the best medication.  

I have just seen this post

 and wondered whether you have ever been tested for Vit B 12 def, I would ask your GP to check all of your vitamins and minerals.  Hope you get to the bottom of it and feel better soon  

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Unresolved iron deficiency anaemia is one of the indicators that someone may be coeliac, so you aren't alone here.   I struggled with anaemia for years but have really got it manageable now.  You are right that absorption is affected by other foods.   If you want maximum absorption there are a few pointers:

The most bioavailable iron (haem) is from red meats (including dark turkey meat); combine a meal with citrus, vegetables; dark green salads and leaves (good folate).   Black olives (they contain iron).    Alcohol does aid absorption.

Avoid drinking tea or milk with meals.  Yes you need calcium but consume these foods at a different meal.  The same goes for zinc and magnesium.

Spinach is a bit of a tricky one.  Yes it contains iron (but not that much) but it also contains an inhibitor (polyphenols).

Taking iron tablets with vitamin c tablets (ascorbic acid) and orange juice for max bioavailability.   Iron tablets vary in 'strength' ferrous fumerate is has more at 33%; ferrous sulphate 20% and ferrous gluconate 12%.   It just means a 200mg tablet of fumerate will provide the most available iron of the three.  The downside is it might cause the most gastrointestinal problems. 

Juvela do a breakfast cereal with a very high iron content.   You might need to supplement breakfast with prunes to avoid constipation.   




May I make a suggestion, my fathers iron levels were very very low, Drs provided tablets did not work (same with me) he started to drink around a litre a day of beetroot juice, maybe half a litre for other people not waiting operations as my father was, in just 3-4 weeks his iron levels were so high that the surgeon could not believe this could happen (for religious purposes my father would not accept blood transfusion) so surgeon did not know what to do, now surgeon said how....incredible someone with such low levels (blood count very very low) my father told surgeon...he was told to STOP drinking it as levels were through the to speak, I also take Beetroot and lots of Spinach (I stopped iron tablets as caused other issues)

My suggestion is STOP tablets and drink this, oh and by the way if you find flavor not too great (my dad would add a splash of Vodka)..not much..but at times.

Hope this helps and take care.

Any other information for Calcium etc check out NUTRITIONISTS Joel Wallach, Peter Glidden, Josh Axe...all on You Tube, their health information is incredible, I have not cured myself but because of their info I am ofd crutches, regrowing own cartilage, got ruf of 10 bad foods that was sapping anything healthy I was eating..16 months off work sick, 3 weeks removing 10 bad more crutches, all natural anti inflammatory Turmeric with Perine 5000 mgs of Vit C ready to start work again.

Wishing you well.

If I can help with anything let me know.



Thanks will consider


I totally agree with the other post about B12 because you need other vitamins for the iron to be properly absorbed. See the website which also covers anaemia. A good consultant years ago recommended to me Floradix (from health food shops) as being the best for bioavailability of the iron content but make sure you get the one suitable for coeliacs. Spatone is another. I have always found that the tablets given by doctors don't help and often cause dreadful constipation. I recommend you read up about how vitamin D is required for calcium absorption as I met another coeliac who had osteopenia and was advised to eat cheese and drink milk but it made no difference. I believe she should have been put on proper supplements with vitamin D. Best wishes




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