Non-heme iron: Unpleasant side-effects
Side effects of therapy with synthetic/artificial oral non-heme iron are most often diarrhea or constipation and epigastric abdominal discomfort. Taken after a meal, side effects decrease, but there is an increased risk of interaction with other substances. (Wikipedia)
Chronics can only use synthetic/artificial non-heme iron for a limited time. Tolerance will always decrease sooner or later and other therapy must be introduced.
Today natural heme iron supplements are available with practically perfect tolerance.
Non-heme iron: Low uptake
The absorption or uptake of synthetic/artificial non-heme iron is generally agreed to fall between 2 – 4 % of the dose given. Since most is not absorbed this leaves toxic and reactive free iron ions in the gut, which cause gastro-intestinal side-effects.
The uptake of synthetic/artificial non-heme iron is affected by other simultaneously ingested food, drink and medication.
Doses of over 50 mg non-heme per day inhibits zinc absorption.
Non-heme iron: Low efficacy
30 days of supplementation with synthetic/artificial 100 mg Fe++ oral non-heme iron at a bio-availablity of 2 % theoretically gives 60 mg absorbed iron. At 5 %, which is unusually high the amount is 150 mg.
Non-heme iron: There really aren't many alternatives
Iron is absolutely vital for life. Chronics usually receive regular synthetic/artificial oral non-heme tablets in high doses until treatment fails due to increasing side-effects.
The remaining alternative is expensive and inconvenient intravenous iron, or transfusions. Both of these have risks, such as complications, allergic reactions and oxidative stress.
There is no reason to continue using therapy that has low efficacy and gives tolerance issues.
Problems to the degree that many therapies are abandoned to the detriment of patients. Iron is absolutely essential for life and cannot be substituted with anything else
The OptiFer®-series of heme iron supplements is the real alternative to the outdated therapies used today.
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Created by MediTec Group FerroCare Division