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Iron Deficiency Anemia and Weight Loss

  June 07, 2017

By Christopher M. James, VIMtrim Personal Training

Two years ago, I had a client who could not lose weight. It was not her thyroid: she exercised regularly and did everything I recommended. I continued to ask questions to find a clue to her dilemma. She complained about not having any energy, and I noticed she had some bruising on her arms and legs (bruising easily is a symptom of anemia), and I asked if she was ever tested for anemia (low iron). She admitted to being tested and was diagnosed with anemia, but was not taking her recommended iron supplements. I suggested she immediately start taking what her doctor recommended, and shortly after, she started losing weight. She was astonished that something as simple as an iron deficiency is what kept her from losing weight.

Iron is a mineral the body needs to function properly. Iron is found in red blood cells and carries oxygen to every cell of the body. If you do not have enough iron, it can lead to fatigue and anemia.

To burn fat, the body needs oxygen. If your iron levels are low, the body cannot oxidize fat as well as it should, thereby slowing your ability to lose weight.

Without enough oxygen, fatigue sets in and slows down the metabolism, which will in turn decrease total daily calorie burn. Try lighting a fire without oxygen; it can’t be done! The same is true with our bodies. You can’t burn fat without enough oxygen circulating through our blood stream.

If you have been told you have low iron by your doctor and were recommended to take an iron supplement and you’re not; you’re only hurting yourself. If your energy levels are low and there is no explanation as to why, have your doctor check your iron level. It’s a simple blood test. Women are more susceptible to anemia than men, not to say that a man can’t also have this issue.

Sometimes it’s the little things that make a big difference.

Chris has over 20 years of personal training experience and is knowledgeable of nutrition and supplementation. As a trainer, he has helped many people from all walks of life and fitness levels achieve their health and fitness goals. His training style is very articulate and detail oriented, emphasizing proper form to prevent injury and to ensure trainees get the most from their workouts. Chris can be reached at 480-264-5120, email or visit

Types of Anemia

Iron deficiency anemia
Iron is one of the main building blocks for red blood cell production. Iron in the body can be too low if you are bleeding and losing iron faster than you can replace it. Your iron may be low if your body doesn’t absorb iron from your food, or if you don’t eat enough food
that contains iron. Low iron is a very common reason for blood cell counts to be low.

Anemia of chronic disease
Anemia of chronic disease is a result of chronic inflammation caused by ongoing infections, tissue damage, various forms of arthritis, benign or malignant tumors, or a variety of chronic medical conditions.

Pernicious anemia
Pernicious anemia occurs when you do not have enough vitamin B12 or folate.

Hemolytic anemia
This type of anemia happens when your red blood cells are destroyed by disease. Back to Top

June 07, 2017
Categories:  Disease/Illness


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