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  Pregnancy: Iron - Need for supplements
My doctor doesn’t think I need an iron supplement but I keep reading about how important it is in pregnancy. What do you think?

When you fall pregnant, the iron your body requires on a daily basis will double. However, because you are not losing the iron you normally would lose during menstruation, during the first few months of your pregnancy your body will probably have enough iron providing your diet is adequate. Your doctor is probably checking your iron levels in your blood at every appointment, and basing his opinion on this test.

As your pregancy progresses, however, the amount of iron you need will increase due to the increased blood volume. Since iron is not easy to digest from your diet, it may become necessary to supplement. Your body will provide the baby with all the iron it needs, and so any iron deficit will only be experienced by you, but will be made worse. In addition, the need for iron increases as the pregnancy progresses, and so the problem may get worse as time goes by.

Initially you may not notice any symptoms, but as you become more anaemic, you may become pale, out of breathe, dizzy and weak. It is also possible to experience heart palpitations, and to faint. Should you experience any of these symptoms it is vital that you contact your doctor.

See also:

Iron - Constipation

Iron - Reason

Iron - Sources


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