Women who have
heavy and prolonged periods may develop anemia, because the body cannot produce
blood as fast as it is being lost.
Your body needs iron to make new blood cells. The
recommended dietary allowance (RDA) is 18 mg.
You may need to increase your iron intake to
20 mg a day if your periods are heavy or
Your diet is the best source of iron. It is better for
you to eat a balanced diet than it is to take dietary supplements. Red meats,
shellfish, eggs, beans, and green leafy vegetables are the best sources of
Iron-enriched cereals (1 cup, read
label for exact amounts)
Cooking in iron cookware will add small amounts of iron to
Vitamin C improves the absorption of iron. Be sure your
diet includes 250 mg of vitamin C a day.
Consider using a
nonprescription iron supplement (such as ferrous sulfate) or a multivitamin if
you are unable to meet your need for iron through your diet. For more
information about iron, see the topic Healthy Eating.
become constipated when you are taking an iron supplement. To avoid