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12-17-2012, 11:15 PM   #1
newlymarriedtocrohns
 
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Low Iron Level

Hubby just got a call from the doctor about his blood tests and found out that his iron level was really low. Apparently it is at a level 4 instead of the average around 60(?). The doctor suggested IV treatment perhaps, but in the meanwhile hubby is doubling up on supplements and trying to find other means of upping his iron instead.

Would you have any suggestions for specific foods or supplements which might raise his iron level even faster? Red meat is one source of iron I know of. What else is good for iron but still good for low fiber/low residue diets?

Thanks for the suggestions!
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Hubby's current treatment: Asacol, Mercaptopurine, Stelara, and Low Fiber/Low Residue diet.
12-17-2012, 11:38 PM   #2
Susan2
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Have a look at this Forum's Wiki on Vitamin and Mineral Deficiencies Here. It includes a list of iron-rich foods. Although it only mentions chicken liver, which, with duck liver, has the highest iron content, all liver has is a good source of iron.
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Crohn's Disease - symptoms since c1955, diagnosed early 1970s. On Prednisolone until...
Total Proctocolectomy in 2000.
Ileostomy that behaves most of the time
Currently on no medications, but under constant gaze of very caring GP, with annual blood and other tests.
12-18-2012, 07:25 PM   #3
newlymarriedtocrohns
 
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Thanks so much Susan! I was hoping there was a mineral board somewhere on the forum. I'll take a look and see what we can do to mix up our diet to help him out.
12-18-2012, 07:55 PM   #4
Tesscorm
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I've also been trying to up my iron intake (altho it's my son with crohns, not me ) - vitamin C helps absorb iron so I try to take supplements with orange juice or have some fruit. Can your husband have oatmeal ? - my brand of oatmeal has a good amount of iron, I add blackstrap molasses (which is also a good source of iron) and some fruit for Vit C.

Caffeine inhibits the absorption of iron - do not have at the same time.

Also, I believe the iron from animal sources is more efficiently absorbed than the iron from plant sources.

Good luck!
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Tess, mom to S, 22
Diagnosed May 2011

Treatment:
May-July 2011 - 6 wks Exclusive EN via NG tube - 2000 ml/night, 1 wk IV Flagyl
July 2011-July 2013 - Supplemental EN via NG, 1000 ml/night, 5 nites/wk, Nexium, 40 mg
Feb. 2013-present - Remicade, 5 mg/kg every 6 wks
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12-19-2012, 12:53 AM   #5
sid
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Wheat grass....just try the natural juice form (no pills)..do it for just 2 weeks religiously and see if it improves.
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12-19-2012, 01:44 AM   #6
Susan2
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Yes, you're right, Tess, blackstrap molasses is excellent for iron and all sorts of other minerals.I have it on my oatmeal porridge and in warm milk at night - or just off the spoon.
12-19-2012, 05:01 AM   #7
Mystygal
 
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Whereabouts might I purchase blackstrap molasses? Is it a specialist health food line? I like the idea of eating it on porridge
12-19-2012, 05:07 AM   #8
Susan2
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I by mine at my local health food shop.
12-19-2012, 09:17 AM   #9
Tesscorm
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I've bought it at Whole Foods.

yep, I learned about it here and someone, maybe you Susan, suggested it in oatmeal... I don't mind it at all in oatmeal!! Not sure about straight off the spoon though!

Also tried using it as a marinade for baked chicken - it was okay, I didn't use much as I wasn't sure how it would turn out, so it didn't have lots of flavour but would try it again with more...

01-25-2013, 05:04 AM   #10
splumley
 
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If his ferritin level is only 4, then it will take either a very long course of 300mg supplements (Ferrous Sulphate or Gluconate) or an iron infusion (which will work in a couple of weeks) to sort things out.

Eating iron rich foods is ok, but the levels of iron are tiny compared with supplements.

I asked my consultant about the negative effects of caffeine, he told me that they arent significant enough to be an issue if you are taking 300mg tablets or having infusions. Vitamin C is helpful, alongside supplements, but makes no difference to an infusion as the iron is delivery by IV drip or injection.

I think the trick is to get the ferritin count back to normal using the infusion, then see if it can be maintained with oral supplements. Assuming his diet is normal (not vegan etc) then food intake probably never was the issue.

Good luck, low iron and anaemia is a real pain, especially if he is an active person.
01-27-2013, 04:01 PM   #11
Ya noy
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You can turn iron-free food into iron rich meals by cooking in cast iron skillets, which has been shown to release and add a significant amount of iron into food.

http://whatscookingamerica.net/Infor...onCastIron.htm

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/1...582.x/abstract
02-07-2013, 09:06 AM   #12
jetay3
 
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hi there, if you can get the iron level up by using oral supplements, that's fantastic. I can't, so I have had a few IV infusions and would strongly recommend that you avoid that if AT ALL possible! (it's 8 hours, sitting on a drip in a chemo ward, and I usually get horrible flu symptoms and vomit for 2 days after!). In Australia there's an oral supplement called Ferrograd C which is very popular because it has the Vit C to help absorption (I believe!).
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