Do iron pills help you gain weight?

Low iron is one of the most common types of minerals and vitamins. Do iron pills make you gain weight? Here is all the information about it.

Iron keeps red blood cells healthy because it is a vital mineral, and it constitutes about 70% of hemoglobin, which transports oxygen from the lungs to all parts of the body. Unfortunately, many suffer from a lack of it, which leads to the need to take its supplements. Do iron pills increase weight? Here are the details below:

Do iron pills increase weight?

Iron supplements have raised concerns about their effect on weight and appetite, and some have linked their intake to weight gain.
But the truth is that patients who receive iron supplements of various forms may gain weight if a healthy diet is not followed or if the person has metabolic syndrome, due to the effect of iron therapy on the level of ferritin in the blood.
To find out if iron pills increase weight, here is the following evidence:

Iron and hemoglobin

A 2016 study found an answer to the question “Do iron pills make you gain weight?” And revealed the relationship between iron treatments and weight gain, as the study was conducted over two years on about 33 patients who were admitted to the hematology clinic, and their ages ranged between 18-50 years, and the results included the following:

  1. Thirty patients had an elevated hemoglobin level, and an increase in their weight was also noted.
  2. Three patients had no change in their weight or an increase in hemoglobin level.
  3. Linking weight gain to the level of increase in hemoglobin in the blood with the absence of a healthy and balanced diet.

Iron and appetite

Iron is the only mineral that the body cannot excrete, so the more it is consumed, the more likely it is that the level of the hormone leptin will decrease, which causes increased appetite and overeating, according to a study published in 2015, which included the following:

  1. Feeding a group of mice foods rich in iron, and others foods low in iron level for two months.
  2. Measuring the level of iron in adipose tissue, and observing its high level in mice fed an iron-rich diet compared to the other group.
  3. Lower blood leptin level for the first group compared to the second group who were fed a low iron diet.

And now does iron pills increase weight? The answer is yes, because leptin is the main appetite regulator in the body, and its low level causes excessive appetite and a feeling of hunger, and therefore; Excessive eating throughout the day, which leads to weight gain and to avoid this, it is recommended to follow a healthy and balanced diet and exercise to maintain weight.

Other iron pills side effects

Some may suffer from a range of side effects or disorders as a result of taking iron supplements, and others may not feel them, we mention to you some of them:

  1. Constipation and diarrhea.
  2. Nausea and vomiting.
  3. stomach pain and upset
  4. Heartburn.
  5. Black stools or urine.
  6. Headache.
  7. Feeling of an abnormal and annoying taste in the mouth.

Tips for taking iron pills

After clarifying the effect of taking iron pills on weight, and answering the question “Do iron pills increase weight?” It must be noted that taking the pills within the doses specified by the doctor daily, along with a healthy diet, contributes to compensating for the deficiency, and does not cause an increase in body weight. It is also recommended for those who take iron pills to take into account the following:

  • Avoid taking it on an empty stomach, to reduce the risk of stomach upset.
  • Be sure to take the pills under close medical supervision.
  • Be careful of excessive doses, especially for children, as they may be toxic to them, as their iron requirement is lower compared to adults.

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