Did you know that 1 in 6 people suffer from iron-deficiency anaemia?

Iron deficiency anaemia is a common, significant and global public health problem with women of childbearing age and pregnant women being at particular risk.

What is iron, and why do humans need it?

Iron is a mineral that the human body needs for development and growth, as it uses iron to make haemoglobin and myoglobin. Haemoglobin is a protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen from the lungs to all parts of the body, and myoglobin is a protein that provides oxygen to muscles. The human body also uses iron to make some hormones as well.

How much iron do humans need?

According to the NHS, the amount of iron you need is:

  • 14.8 mg a day for women aged 19 to 50
  • 8.7 mg a day for women aged over 50
  • 8.7 mg a day for men over 50

Women who lost a lot of blood during their period are at a higher risk of iron deficiency anaemia.

What is iron-deficiency anaemia?

You may not have any apparent symptoms initially if your body is not getting enough iron, as your body will draw on iron that it has stored in bone marrow, liver, muscles and the spleen. However, iron deficiency anaemia can set in when these levels also get low.

Iron-deficiency anaemia means that your red blood cells will become smaller and contain less haemoglobin, causing the blood to carry less oxygen from the lungs throughout the body.

According to the NHS, common symptoms of iron deficiency anaemia can include:

  • noticeable heartbeats (also known as heart palpitations)
  • paleness
  • shortness of breath
  • tiredness and lack of energy

Less common symptoms can include:

  • headaches
  • ringing, buzzing or hissing noises in your ears (tinnitus)
  • food tasting strange
  • feeling itch
  • a sore tongue
  • hair loss
  • wanting to eat non-food items such as ice or paper
  • finding it hard to swallow
  • painful open sores in the corners of your mouth
  • spoon-shaped nails
  • restless legs syndrome

How do you check iron levels at home?

Iron levels can be measured through biomarkers in the blood, such as ferritin – and these are often seen as a more reliable indicator of iron deficiency anaemia than the traditional full blood count (FBC).

If you suspect your iron levels may be low, then it is essential to find out more, and you can do this with Fit2FlyTest’s at home iron test.

Our Iron Level Test offers you a simple way to check for iron deficiency anaemia in a finger-prick blood drop with reliable results in 10 minutes in the comfort of your own home. 

You can then upload and store your iron level test result within our patient portal, where your confirmatory laboratory certificate will also be held. 

What should I do if I get a positive result from my Iron Level Test?

If your test result comes back positive, you should contact your GP’s surgery and make an appointment to discuss your results. 


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