Ferrous Fumarate problems with heartburn and constipation

Hi all, I've been taking Ferrous Fumarate 210 mg tablets three times a day for a couple of weeks now (prescribed by GP), supplementing with 1000 mcg vitamin C daily. I'm getting heartburn and constipation - is there a more gentle (but at the same time effective)  alternative I could use?

Thanks in advance


15 Replies

  • I often suggest considering haem or ferritin supplements.

    The odd bit of feedback suggests some people find them quite OK. But I don't need to take iron and others may have very different viewpoints.

  • Notice that your B12 levels weren't great a month a go - which could be the cause of the symptoms you mention ... though also know that some people who have iron based anaemia as well as PA do have problems with ferrous fumarate - there do appear to be some alternatives - most of which seem to be mentioned in this post


  • Maybe the liquid form of ferrous fumarate, but it's seriously grim. Check with your Doctor, but also see what your pharmacist has to say, they're pretty knowledgeable. ☺ 

  • I used very large doses of spatone or floradix initially.

    I now take Gentle Iron by Solgar, as recommended by my nutritional doctor as being stronger than the above but does not upset the digestion.

  • Have you tried taking them with a meal? I have to do that or they turn me inside out. X

  • Hi,  I also take Solgar Gentle Iron. It never upsets my stomach nor do I experience heartburn or constipation. It says  on the bottle to take with food. Good luck!

  • i used spatone iinitially as wasnt allowed tabs due to pending colonoscopy . worked ok

    could take lactulose to stop constipation which also gives me heartburn

  • When I was taking iron sulfate I used to eat two ripe pears at lunch. That tended to sort the constipation.

  • thats good. its really hard with all these meds. it was important for me to take the iron as it was 8. the b12 was 20. i dont know how i carried on. my worse symptom was paranoia and that was the last to go! took a year to go the other symtoms improved but didnt go completely as it got so low. Good luck with your treatment xxx

  • Thanks for all your suggestions, I'll try one of the alternatives !

    T x

  • Try to take your iron along with a glass of orange juice and a Vit C tablet. The chemicals citric acid and ascorbic acid greatly help the absorption of iron.

  • Try Higher nature iron. I  too get digestion problems with Fe fumerate. Couldn't take 3x a day, only one. However, my gp has stopped prescribing it. I  should buy it instead, he advised.  Despite my Fe levels being borderline low with supplementation  (!) , and my ferritin. This brand, however is ok. my chest pain and breathlessness is improving. The better preparations are costly😕

  • Do you mean this stuff - highernature.co.uk/ShowProd... ?

    As it only contains 5mg of iron I would guess that explains the lack of digestive symptoms. Tima69 would have to take 125 of them to get the same dose as she's getting now.

  • Hi fbirder, point taken. I was wary of the tiny amount,  however ,  I ve been taking it as prescribed on the tin and my symptoms started improving by day 3. It contains other cofactors. Only drawback is a sulphide -ish smell. 

    👍for your keen observations.  Your posts are informative and encouraging. ☺

  • Spatone from Boots - with or without Apple juice is very gentle.   I'm very sensitive and this works well for me - iron saturation numbers improved on it.  NHS used to pay - not now though!! Good luck.

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