Nutritionist Koroleva: Veganism, raw food diet and fasting are fraught with iron deficiency anemia

Iron deficiency in the body is fraught with anemia and oxygen starvation, decreased immunity, decreased performance, as well as problems for the female reproductive system. Moreover, it can occur both due to insufficient nutrition and due to age-related changes in the digestive system. Iron absorption can also be interfered with by taking insufficiently processed whole grains and legumes and certain mineral supplements. About it Public News Service told Doctor of Medical Sciences, nutritionist Margarita Koroleva.

“The main sources of iron for us are food.”


The doctor emphasized that iron is an important component of all internal environments and intracellular structures of the human body, which ensures the transfer of oxygen from the lungs to tissues as part of the hemoglobin protein. Normal levels of iron in the blood help maintain a person’s performance, energy and quality of life.

“The main sources of iron for us are food products, which allow us not only to receive, but also to absorb this mineral from their composition. These products are: meat, poultry, fish, dairy products, leafy greens. There are both fruits and vegetables that contain iron. Of course, legumes are also an excellent source of iron to maintain the body’s ability to absorb it and ensure sufficient levels of hemoglobin and related functions,” says the nutritionist.

Lack of iron in the body, accordingly, leads to a decrease in the concentration of hemoglobin in the blood, which, in turn, is fraught with oxygen starvation.

“This is the inability not only to become pregnant, but also to carry it to term.”


“This leads not only to a decrease in immunity, but also to a decrease in performance. Low immunity increases the risk of contracting absolutely any existing disease, including modern viral, bacterial and other infections,” the expert noted. – This is especially fraught and dangerous for reproductive function. This is the inability not only to become pregnant, but also to carry it to term. And the children will be quite weak.”

A person’s appearance can indicate an iron deficiency state of the body – his skin, nails and mucous membranes turn pale, his hair becomes dry. How you feel can also signal a lack of this mineral – a person’s performance decreases and he gets tired quickly. Iron deficiency can be diagnosed using biochemical and clinical blood tests, Koroleva noted.

“Problems arise that may require medical intervention.”


The reasons why people lack iron are congenital and acquired, the expert explained. The first, however, are quite rare and are corrected already in the early stages of the child’s development.

“As a rule, iron deficiency occurs in people who limit themselves in food, since iron comes from many foods. These are the same slender young ladies who are always on diets, on starvation and semi-starvation programs, deny themselves sources of complete protein, adhering to veganism and raw food diets. Some even deny themselves plant foods, for example, they don’t eat legumes due to the fact that the intestines react inadequately to them. Therefore, due to insufficient intake of foods as sources of iron, problems arise associated with increasing iron deficiency anemia, which may require medical intervention,” says the doctor.

In addition to people who limit themselves in their diet, pregnant women and the elderly are at risk of iron deficiency, Koroleva added. In the latter, due to accumulated problems with the digestive system and atrophy of the gastric mucosa, iron may be poorly absorbed even with a normal diet.

At the same time, problems with the absorption of iron can also occur in healthy, well-nourished people when consuming certain foods and medications. Thus, legumes and whole grain products contain phytic acid, which can be removed through preliminary (soaking, fermentation, etc.) and heat treatment. If there was no treatment, or it was insufficient, phytic acid will intercept iron, and with it magnesium, calcium and zinc, and prevent the body from absorbing them. At the same time, magnesium, calcium and zinc themselves, entering the stomach as part of bioactive supplements, will disrupt the absorption of iron from food, the nutritionist summarized.

Earlier in a conversation with OSN, a dietitian Margarita Koroleva said that excess sweets can lead to the development of polycystic ovary syndrome.

Message Nutritionist Koroleva: Veganism, raw food diet and fasting are fraught with iron deficiency anemia appeared first on Public news service.

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