What is Iron?
Iron is a mineral that is present in all body cells, but most of it is in red blood cells (hemoglobin) and in the muscles, where it is co-responsible for binding, storage, and transport of oxygen. Iron is a crucial component of metabolism and many enzymes and hormones. So now that we know what is iron, let us move on.
The body of an adult male contains an average 3,5g of iron and about 2,9g in a female body. About two-thirds of all iron is in hemoglobin, most of the rest is bound to ferritin – a protein complex that serves as iron storage. Ferritin is in bone marrow, spleen, kidney, stomach, and intestinal mucosa.
The average values of ferritin in blood are around:
- Male: 12 to 300 nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL)
- Female: 12 to 150 ng/mL
The lower the ferritin level, even within the “normal” range, the more likely it is that the person does not have enough iron.
Iron in the body has numerous, essential functions. It is an integral part of the heme substance involved in various biochemical reactions. Among others the heme protein is also present in hemoglobin and myoglobin; Hemoglobin in the red blood cells ensures the adhesion and the transfer of oxygen from lungs throughout the body. Myoglobin (which is in the muscle cells) binds and stores oxygen for undisrupted muscle function.
Iron is also an integral part of:
- Participates in the production of energy for body functions
- Iron Participates in Detoxification of pills.
- Helping the immune system to destroy bacteria,
- Participates in the formation of genetic material,
- Regulates processes that detect the amount of oxygen in the tissues, and due to that the response of the body to the reduced amount of oxygen.
Recommended Daily Doses
|Birth to 6 months||0.27 mg*||0.27 mg*|
|7–12 months||11 mg||11 mg|
|1–3 years||7 mg||7 mg|
|4–8 years||10 mg||10 mg|
|9–13 years||8 mg||8 mg|
|14–18 years||11 mg||15 mg||27 mg||10 mg|
|19–50 years||8 mg||18 mg||27 mg||9 mg|
|51+ years||8 mg||8 mg|
* Adequate Intake (AI) Source : DIETARY REFERENCE INTAKES FOR Vitamin A, Vitamin K, Arsenic, Boron, Chromium, Copper, Iodine, Iron, Manganese, Molybdenum, Nickel, Silicon, Vanadium, and Zinc