Iron is considered one of the most important minerals for good health, and many of us are lacking in adequate levels. This means, taking a supplement can be hugely important for many people.
But do you know what type of iron is in your supplement, and what you need to be affected?
Leading Nutritionist, Greg Weatherhead, from natural health brand, BetterYou, explained: “There are two categories of iron supplements, those which contain the ferrous form of iron and those which contain the ferric form. Ferric iron is the oxidised form of iron, which makes it less reactive than the ferrous form, meaning it is less likely to act as a free radical and damage cells once within the body.
“One specific form of ferric iron, known as ferric EDTA, has been the subject of a large clinical trial demonstrating its superiority over other forms. The trial, published in the Tanzanian Journal of Health Research, shows how a 5mg supplement of this form of iron provided the same increase in iron levels as a 10mg ferrous iron supplement. This form of iron reduces the oxidative stress imposed on the body by the more reactive ferrous forms of this element which are known to cause more side effects.”
He added that as iron is hard on the digestive tract, only a fraction of the iron consumed will be absorbed, leaving the remaining iron to sit in the stomach, liver and large intestines, causing irritation. Aside from tablet forms, there are alternatives such as oral sprays which offer a solution to the digestive discomfort and poor absorption experienced from traditionally ingested iron supplements.