You exercise, eat well, get enough sleep (most of the time), but sometimes still feel sluggish, unmotivated, or weak. What could be causing it? Many athletes or health-conscious individuals think they are doing everything right for their body, but their body doesn’t always seem to agree. A simple blood test could reveal that you, along with about 30% of the world’s population, have an iron deficiency.
Iron is a part of the protein hemoglobin that helps transport oxygen from the lungs, through your blood to other parts of the body, and produces ATP, your primary energy source. Iron also helps create red blood cells and protects your immune system. You will notice the symptoms of an iron deficiency, such as fatigue and irritability, but you might not recognize that it’s a nutrient deficiency. Anemia caused by inadequate iron levels is often mistaken for overtraining. Chronic injuries and overall loss of power, motivation, and appetite can all be caused by an iron deficiency. Only a blood test can determine if your iron levels are adequate. (more…)