WASHINGTON, D.C. -
It is the number one reason for fatigue. And the reason why some women can't give blood: low iron levels.
Luckily, you can build those levels back up. "I like helping people, it's a nice feeling," said blood donor, Kaitlin Barber. "Actually this is like my second time ever donating," said blood donor, Mary Patton.
"My dad has always been a donor, and then recently my brother has had hodgkins lymphoma, and have to donations himself, so it's taken on a more personal note," said blood donor, Sarah Hoeben.
Kaitlin , Mary and Sarah all have something in common, they are able to donate blood -which means they have iron levels that are at or above normal levels. It's a critical time to replenish the end of the summer blood supply
As you know people are traveling, they are gonna be out of town,so we need to get as much blood on our shelves as possible.
Iron deficiency is the number one reason women are not able to donate blood.
The deferral period has been extended now, so it's important to get your iron levels as high, people used to be able to come in more quickly, and now they have to wait a couple of months.
But even if you don't regularly give blood.
"There is a reason that iron is called an essential nutrient,,it is needed in every cell in the body,, and when you do not have enough of it, you notice it, your energy drops, your skin gets pale, people often report trouble with hair and nails. so if you notice any of these symptoms, its important to get this level checked by your doctor and you start rebuilding it in your body," said reporter Liz Bonis.
Iron supplements and foods rich in iron may be needed. These include, red meat, eggs, spinach, raisins, iron fortified cereals, and beans. These may be best absorbed with foods with vitamin c, such as oranges and grapefruit.
It does take a few months to build iron stores back up. If you'd like a more complete list of foods and recommendations
We have a link to that for you on our website: just visit Siouxlandnews.com.