Why Are Fit People At A Higher Risk For Iron Deficiency?
Spin regularly? Run marathons? Maybe you do Crossfit or Iron Man training!
Given the physical intensity of your lifestyle, you may already be paying close attention to your macros. But are you getting enough iron?
Iron deficiency is much more common in athletes- especially fit women or athletes who follow a meatless diet.
It can create a number of problems for elite and non-elite athletes, including exhaustion, diminished performance, poor recovery, dizziness, breathlessness... the list goes on.
Why? Because athletes may lose iron through sweat, gastrointestinal tract, or red blood cell destruction (which can occur due to circulatory stress from muscle activity).
Women aged 15-50 may also experience depleted iron levels due to menstruation. So for fit women, daily required iron is even higher.
Low iron, particularly in triathletes and runners, may also result from a phenomenon known as foot-strike hemolysis, whereby blood vessels burst in the foot due to repeated strikes against a hard surface.
Iron supports a number of important functions within the body – transporting oxygen to muscles & tissues and energy metabolism to name a few.
To meet your body's increased need for iron, you can improve your natural iron intake with meat and non-meat foods, as well as the Lucky Iron Fish!