To fulfill your iron deficiency, you are heading to the pharmacy, where you are welcomed by an overwhelming selection. And its indeed obvious to wonder that which one to make choice without resorting to an impromptu game of eeny, meeny, miny, moe? As each of them is different. But, before you make a choice, I would like to recommend you that choose the one that has least amount of side effects.
To help you choose the right iron supplement, here I have put together a quick and easy guide for you. And you can also consider your doctor or pharmacist as a great resource to help you understand the best available options.
Before you choose an iron supplement, consider the following :
- Elemental Iron
- Side Effects
- Convenient Dosing
When it comes to choosing an iron supplement, instead of looking at the overall strength, it is advisable to look at the amount of elemental iron. Elemental iron is the amount of iron available for absorption.
Talking about absorption, you’ll be required to make sure that your body absorbs as much iron from your supplement as possible.You can do this by taking it on an empty stomach or consume it with foods that are high in vitamin C which has been found to enhance iron absorption.
Oral iron supplement may cause some unpleasant gastrointestinal (GI) side effects, like vomiting, nausea, diarrhea or constipation, and indigestion. These are the most common symptoms of dosing and typically subside with continued therapy.
As mentioned in the Anemia Guidelines for Family Medicine (2014), you can boost your tolerance by taking a small daily dose and gradually increasing it. Taking it with or after a meal can also make it easier on your belly, but this decreases the amount of iron you will absorb, so just keep that in mind.
The easier a supplement is to consume, the more you are likely to take it as required, right? For this reason, it’s a good idea to read the recommended dosing or check with your pharmacist. Compliance is a crucial part of iron supplementation and treating iron deficiency, so look for a supplement with a dosing schedule that fits your lifestyle.
Choosing the best iron supplement is about making it as easy on you as possible. You want a supplement that gives you the most bang – or elemental iron in this case – for your buck, that also happens to be easy to take as far as convenience and side effects go. Speak to your doctor or pharmacist about your needs and which supplement is right for you.
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