Deficient Iron and B12: I've just got my lab... - Thyroid UK

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Deficient Iron and B12


I've just got my lab results back and I think my B12 and Iron are extremely deficient. I know that as I'm not actually 'under' the range the Dr will not prescribe any meds for it. Been there, done that before...

My questions are

1) Do you think these are low?

2) Can you recommend supplements that are actually worth it, i.e get absorbed into the system

Results: ( I didn't take any meds 24 hours before the blood test)

Serum Iron Level 9 umo1/L (7 -32)

Serum Vitamin B12 336 ng/L (211 -911)

Thank you all so much, I always appreciate your replies.


7 Replies

Sarah I'm not as knowledgeable as others on here but your B12 looks on the low side I have a family history of PA mines at 530 I use B13 patches and was advised on here to start taking multi B vits my Dr has reluctantly just done folate etc and B12 it will be interesting to get the results. My B12 has stayed at 530 for the last 2 years with the patches. All the best x

Thank you x

Have you been checked for h pylori? It reduces stomach acid in the stomach and therefore b12 and iron cannot get digested/absorbed.

I was positive without any stomach pain.

You might join/read the pernecious anemia forum here on health unlocked and see if you have symptoms.

No I haven't, I don't even know what that is. I'll do some research. Can you get heartburn with it? Thank you for your response.

Yes! Low stomach acid can cause heartburn just like high stomach acid. However low stomach acid is thought to be the more frequent actual cause. Taking something for heartburn further reduces stomach acid, which causes problems for absorbtion of b12 and iron.

What happens is the stomach acid is too low to cause the flap between the stomach and the esophagus to the stomach acid is able to get up into the esophagus and cause the heartburn symptom.

Ways to see if your stomach acid is too low is to swallow 2 tablespoons of apple cidar vinegar with meals along with not drinking much liquid during your meal. This will increase stomach acid. If this stops/reduces symptoms of heattburn you know your stomach acid is too low.

Then the question becomes, why is it too low?

H pylori is a bacteria that colonizes the gut lining over time. In order to do this it reduces stomach acid.

People with h pylori have low iron and b12 due to malabsorbtion, due to low stomach acid. B12 may take longer to deplete as the liver stores anywhere from 3-10 years worth of b12.

You post says you were off suppliments for 24 hours. If you are taking iron you have to be off for 5-7days (depending on the source) to get your levels from diet only. If you are taking iron and only off for 24 hours those tests show your iron level WITH supplimentation.

H pylori is a chronic infection that causes inflamation, therefore levels of ferritin (protein that binds iron stores) can be normal or even high but unavailable to the body as the body is segregating iron in order to protect itself.

Other causes of chronic inflamation are celiacs, chrohns, arthritis, ect. I would start with the most likely, h pylori.

Studies show that appox 1% of b12 tablets are absorbes thru passive absorbtion. So if you take 1000mcgs you with absorb appox 10mcgs. Your body needs between 2.4 to 6 mcgs (again, depends on the source) of b12 daily. If you are going to raise b12 thru tablets try at least 2000mcgs daily at separate times.

Additionally, when deficient in b12, folate (b9)can be effected.

B12, iron and folate all work together (cofactors) to produce healthy red blood cells. Without them we feel tired, lack of concentration, memory issues, brain fog, irritability, depression, balance issues, headaches,lack of motivation, ect.

Fyi, your thyroid does not function properly without adequate b12 and iron.

If you have h pylori and get treatment, monitor your thyroid levels carefully as your thyroid may start fuctioning of it own accord and your medications may need to be reduced.

Wow thank you for that reply. Lots of information. I'm not sure I can get tested for it though. I'd have to convince my gp I was suffering from a stomach ulcer before they tested for this 😫

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