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Iron deficiency is a cause of Vitamin D deficiency

IRON Summary

  • Human body needs Iron, especially the liver, which also processes Vitamin D
  • Primary Iron sources: meat ,supplements, plants (if vitamin C also in the meal)
  • Iron deficiency is very common around the world
    especially. pregnant, dark skin, vegans, living in developing countries
  • Low-cost Iron supplements cause mild nausea in some people
    there are several high-cost Iron supplements which have much less nausea
  • Iron and Vitamin D are synergistic
    increasing one often increases the other
    low levels of one associated with low levels of the other
    the synergism occurs even without clinical deficiency of either one
  • Women who are not menstruating (oral contraceptives or age) have more Iron and more vitamin D
  • Iron is depleted by wide variety of drugs, Calcium, Magnesium, Coffee, Tea, etc.

Note also

  • Vitamin D non-responding infants become responders after Iron supplementation
  • This page was just a Hypothesis from Feb 2013 to June 2016

Heme iron polypeptide (HIP) 

See also VitaminDWiki

ALL 68 items of the IRON articles in VitaminDWiki

See also web

  • Vitamin D requires iron aid, and both are often lacking Nutrition ATC May 2012
    Conversion of vitamin D in the liver is reduced if there is not enough Iron
    iron is the most commonly deficient nutrient around the world, including the United States
  • Micronutrient deficiencies World Health Organization
    Iron deficiency is the most common and widespread nutritional disorder in the world.
    Iodine deficiency is the world’s most prevalent, yet easily preventable, cause of brain damage.
  • Effect of iron on serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D and 24,25-dihydroxyvitamin D concentrations.
    Am J Clin Nutr. 1992 Sep;56(3):533-6.
    13 infants with iron-deficiency anemia, 9 of the 13 had vitamin D levels < 10ng
    Treated infants with intramuscular iron
    BOTH serum Iron and vitamin D increased
    Some of the infants had previously been non-responders to vitamin D supplementation
  • PDF is attached at the bottom of this page
  • Prevalence and risk factors for vitamin D deficiency in children with iron deficiency anemia
    PubMed Korea, June 2012, full text online
    Studied 79 children with Iron Deficiency Anemia (IDA)
    5X more likely to have vitamin D deficiency if have IDA and were < 2 years old
  • Relationship between vitamin D deficiency, bone remodeling and iron status in iron-deficient young women consuming an iron-fortified food.- Eur J Nutr. 2012 May 23.
    41 iron-deficient menstruating women. 92 % were vitamin D insufficient
    Random Controlled Trial: half got fruit juice fortified with iron
    Transferrin saturation and 25-hydroxyvitamin D were positively correlated.
    The recovery of iron status by consuming an iron-fortified food does not affect 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels; however, the increase in iron supply to tissues is lower if the women also present vitamin D deficiency.
  • Low Vitamin D in Kids May Play a Role in Anemia Science Daily May 2011
    9,400 children, 2 to 18 years of age; < 20 ng 50% higher risk for anemia
    For each 1 ng/ml increase in vitamin D, anemia risk dropped by 3 %.
    Only 1 % of white children had anemia, compared with 9 % of black children.
  • Low vitamin D levels raise anemia risk in children Medical XPress Oct 2013
    2X more likely if < 30 ng, Black children had higher rates of anemia compared with white children (14 percent vs. 2 percent)
  • Vitamin D, race, and risk for anemia in children. Jan 2013
    1.9X more likely if < 30 ng
  • CDC says American Need more Vitamin D and Iron April 2012
    Study looked at 58 nutrients.
    Iodine came close, but CDC concluded that only Vitamin D and Iron were important to the nation
    Note: Iodine also very important to individuals,
  • Association of 25-hydroxyvitamin D with anemia risk in patients scheduled for cardiac surgery May 2013
    "'demonstrates an independent association between vitamin D status and anemia risk"
  • Vitamin D deficiency and anemia: a cross-sectional study - Oct 2009
    1.9X more likely to have anemia if low Vitamin D  Download the PDF from VitaminDWiki
  • How to Make a Smartphone Detect Anemia
    MIT Review Sept 2016, Interesting, but nothing about Vitamin D
  • Craving Ice? You Could Have an Iron Deficiency Mercola Nov 2016
    Ice reduces Anemia symptoms. Craving = more than 1 month of eating ice
    Also mentions association between Anemia and low vitamin D
  • Iron Deficiency Anemia Tied to Hearing Loss NYT Jan 2017
    305,339 adults ages 21 to 90, of whom 4,807 had hearing loss and 2,274 had iron deficiency anemia. (48%)
    The word vitamin does not appear in the study
     Download the PDF from VitaminDWiki

Hypothesis of interactions between Iron and Vitamin C - 2016

Bonnie and Clyde: Vitamin C and iron are partners in crime in iron deficiency anemia and its potential role in the elderly.
Aging (Albany NY). 2016 May;8(5):1150-2. doi: 10.18632/aging.100966.
Lane DJ1, Jansson PJ1, Richardson DR1.
1Department of Pathology and Bosch Institute, Molecular Pharmacology and Pathology Program, Blackburn Building, University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, 2006, Australia.

PMID: 27208799 PMCID: PMC4931859 DOI: 10.18632/aging.100966
 Download the PDF from VitaminDWiki

Vegetarians and vegans have less vitamin D in blood: Less Iron?

Plasma concentrations of 25-hydroxyvitamin D in meat eaters, fish eaters, vegetarians and vegans: results from the EPIC-Oxford study.

Comment by VitaminDWiki
Strongly suspect the reason for the results found is:
Vegetarian/Vegan ==> Decreased Iron ==> Decreased Liver ability to process vitamin D

  • Meat: 124 IU daily ==>31 ng
  • V/V: 28 IU daily ==>22 ng

That is: increase of 100 IU ==> increase of 10 ng
But, other studies show that need 400 IU to 800 IU ==> 10ng

Options for Vegetarians/Vegans include:

  1. Supplement with Iron (such as with the patented Iron supplement at the bottom of this page)
  2. Eat vegetables along with vitamin C - which increases the amount of Iron available from plants.
  3. Supplement with vitamin D3 (Three companies sell Vegan D3)
  4. Spend more time in the sun or with a UV lamp
  5. How you might double your response to vitamin D
Iron Deficiency material follows

Iron Deficiency Guide has the following venn diagram


What Is Iron-Deficiency Anemia? NIH

  • About 1 in 5 women of childbearing age has iron-deficiency anemia.
  • About half of all pregnant women develop iron-deficiency anemia.
    The condition can increase a pregnant woman's risk for a premature or low-birth-weight baby.

Iron Deficiency Anemia American Family Physician, March 2007, full text on-line

The prevalence of iron deficiency anemia

  • 2 % in adult men,
  • 7.1 % in white women:
  • 9 to 12 % in non-Hispanic white women,
  • nearly 20 % in black and Mexican-American women.
  • 40 % of vegans 19 to 50 years of age

Iron Therapy Organization online textbook: contents

  • Introduction: Iron Deficiency and Iron Therapy
  • Ch.1: Iron Metabolism
  • Ch.2: Management of Iron-Deficiency Anemia in Pregnancy and the Postpartum
  • Ch.3: Iron Therapy in Inflammatory Bowel Diseases
  • Ch.4: Intravenous Iron Therapy in the Perisurgical Setting as an Alternative to Red Blood Cell Transfusions
  • Ch.5: Iron Therapy in Chronic Heart Failure (CHF)
  • Ch.6: Iron Therapy in Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS)
  • Ch.7: Iron Therapy in Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Ch.8: Iron Therapy in the Critically Ill
  • Ch.9: Iron Therapy in Pediatrics
  • Ch.10: Iron Therapy in the Oncology Setting

Note: Less iron in diet in recent decades due to

  • No longer cooking in iron pots
  • Eating less red meat
  • 1981 theory proposed that Iron could increase CVD – never confirmed or refuted.
  • Drinking more milk Milk decreases iron while increasing vitamin

The American Dietetic Association’s COMPLETE FOOD & NUTRITION GUIDE, 2nd ed. 2002. USDA National Nutrient Database

Reminder - Heme iron from meat is about 3X more available to the liver than Iron from plant sources

Nutrition for Everyone: Iron and Iron Deficiency CDC adapted from 1998 source

Lots of material, including:

How is iron deficiency detected?

  • Your doctor or healthcare provider will do blood tests to screen for iron deficiency. The most common tests for screening are
    Hemoglobin test (a test that measures hemoglobin which is a protein in the blood that carries oxygen)
    Hematocrit test (the percentage of red blood cells in your blood by volume)
  • Sometimes other blood tests are used to confirm that anemia is due to iron deficiency. These might include
    Complete blood count (to look at the number and volume of the red blood cells)
    Serum ferritin (a measure of a stored form of iron)
    Serum iron (a measure of the iron in your blood)
    Transferrin saturation (a measure of the transported form of iron)
    Transferrin receptor (a measure of increased red blood cell production)
  • To improve absorption of non-meat sources, have vitamin-C rich food.in the same meal

Decreasing Iron in the blood (US CDC 2002)

Iron Deficiency 


Iron Deficiency anemia


Iron-Deficiency Anemia - How to Get the Most Iron Out of Your Diet and Supplements EZIneArticles July 2012

There are MANY medical drugs that deplete Iron from the body. Some of the categories are:
> Antacids: such as those used to reduce stomach acidity, GERD, etc.
> Antibiotics: cephalosporins, penicillins, tetracyclines, etc.
> Anti-Inflammatory Drugs: ibuprofen, steroids, etc.
> Blood Pressure Lowering Drugs: calcium-channel blockers, ACE-Inhibitors, and others.
> Diuretics: "water pills", > And the list goes on...
Some of the commonly-used natural supplements that deplete Iron by binding to it either in the blood or digestive tract:
> Calcium, > Magnesium, > Artichoke, > Cascara sagrada, > Chamomile, > CoQ10, > And the list goes on...
Some foods and drinks that deplete Iron:
> Dairy products, > Coffee, > Tea, > Alcohol & Wines
Notes on P.P.I.

  • Proton Pump Inhibitors: Acid Suppression with a Nutritional Cost June 2014
    Long term use of P.P.I. (years) reduces stomach acid such that both Iron and vitamin B12 must be supplemented
  • Combating Acid Reflux May Bring Host of Ills NYT June 2012
    . . third highest-selling class of drugs in the US, $13.9 billion in prescription sales in 2010
    "P.P.I.’s work by blocking the production of acid in the stomach, but the body reacts by overcompensating and, she said, “revving up production” of acid-making cells. “You get excess growth of those cells in the stomach, so when you unblock production, you have more of the acid-making machinery,” she said."
  • Omeprazole & Iron Deficiency Anemia Feb 2014
    "Patients taking omeprazole for chronic stomach disorders may require iron injections to prevent iron deficiency anemia."
  • Smoking Gun for Stomach Drugs Mercola, June 2016
    "PPI medications are designed to inhibit the proton pump and reduce the amount of acid produced. PPIs do not specifically target the cells in your stomach, and stomach acid is usually not the primary trigger behind chronic heartburn."
    "PPIs may reduce acid between 90 and 95 percent, increasing your risk of salmonella, c. difficile, giardia and listeria infections"

Iron Deficiency and Anemia, Causes, Consequences, and Solutions Excellent

Parul Christian, International Nutrition, 2005  Download the PDF from VitaminDWiki
Example image: Prevalence of Anemia (Iron anemia being the largest cause)

Anemia varies with age and sex

Effects of Iron on Vitamin D Metabolism: A Systematic Review - Dec 2016

 Download the PDF from VitaminDWiki

Short URL = http://is.gd/anemiaVitD

Iron deficiency is a cause of Vitamin D deficiency        
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Attached files

ID Name Comment Uploaded Size Downloads
16279 HIP 2010.pdf admin 25 Sep, 2021 471.89 Kb 432
10209 Effects of Iron on Vitamin D Metabolism.pdf admin 18 Jul, 2018 444.04 Kb 853
7624 JAMA anemia hearing loss.pdf admin 05 Jan, 2017 157.18 Kb 1988
7141 Vit C and Iron.jpg admin 04 Oct, 2016 57.37 Kb 47148
7140 Bonnie and Clyde - Iron and Vitamin C.pdf admin 04 Oct, 2016 766.20 Kb 1798
6808 Stomach acid vs age.jpg admin 20 Jun, 2016 21.41 Kb 28826
6807 Anemia vs age.jpg admin 20 Jun, 2016 29.30 Kb 30347
6806 Anemia 65 plus.pdf admin 20 Jun, 2016 112.20 Kb 2028
6803 Vitamin D deficiency and anemia.pdf admin 20 Jun, 2016 112.31 Kb 1903
2104 Anaemia around the world.jpg admin 11 Feb, 2013 66.62 Kb 39897
2103 Iron Deficency - 2005.pdf admin 11 Feb, 2013 405.04 Kb 4158
2102 Iron deficiency anemia vs time CDC.jpg admin 11 Feb, 2013 33.72 Kb 40673
2101 Iron deficiency vs time CDC.jpg admin 11 Feb, 2013 51.75 Kb 70032
2100 Heme Iron.jpg admin 11 Feb, 2013 59.98 Kb 38188
2099 Iron deficiency venn diagram.jpg admin 11 Feb, 2013 20.14 Kb 58792