The human body is extremely complicated with a host of different functions being performed simultaneously around the body. These functions are controlled by the various hormones that are secreted in the body. However, there are some functions that require minerals for their normal functioning. The human body is not capable of manufacturing minerals and requires and therefore should be included in the diet so that they can be absorbed into the body. Once absorbed by the body it can be put to use in areas where they are required. One such important mineral is Iron.
Iron forms a vital component of the blood in a human being as it performs some important functions in the body, but the most important function served by iron is in hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is used to transfer oxygen to various parts of the body and to remove carbon dioxide from those parts of the body. The exchange of carbon dioxide and oxygen takes place in the lungs. A lack of iron will affect the functioning of this process. Iron deficiency presents itself with symptoms that include fatigue, weight loss, pale skin, white gums and white fingernails. A person with deficient oxygen carrying capacity will also suffer from shortness of breath because the body requires more air to be drawn into the lungs in order to feed more oxygen to the various parts of the body.
Iron levels in the blood cannot be tested at home as there is no known testing kit available. Iron blood testing needs to be done in a laboratory. Such a test is usually conducted as part of a full blood test which tests the various levels of all the normal components in the blood. This test is useful to identify a lack of iron in the blood and to attribute certain symptoms that may occur due to this deficiency. It is also important to note that excess quantities of iron in the body can be harmful to an individual as the effects of such a condition are similar to other types of toxic conditions. The only way to judge iron deficiency at home is to notice any telltale symptoms that may occur in an individual. These symptoms, described above, may also occur in other conditions but in any case they are a sign of some problem with the body and they must be investigated. Iron deficiency can be cured by changing one’s diet or by consuming iron supplements based on the recommendation of a doctor.
Submitted by M T on May 27, 2010 at 05:39