While iron is a necessary nutrient, it is needed only in small amounts. When too much iron is absorbed from the diet, it can cause a wide variety of health problems. High levels of iron are associated with an increased risk for cancer, heart disease, and other illnesses such as endocrine problems, arthritis, diabetes, and liver disease.
Wow, I’m glad I don’t take any iron supplements, and I’m glad I stopped eating meat, which is a major source of iron. Iron has been linked with lung cancer in particular, and other cancers in general.
Also, I ran across an article recently that says too much iron in your blood may damage your arteries. This is another reason why I’m glad to be vegetarian.
Since I am a vegetarian, you might wonder where I get my iron. Here is a link of vegan sources. Apparently there is no shortage of iron in our food, even in vegetables. Part of our problem is that we have been brainwashed in this country to think we need to take iron. I grew up in the 1950s when there were Geritol commercials on TV telling us we all might have iron deficiency anemia. In my opinion that was just one more example of a corporation trying to make money, because not that many people had low iron levels, and I doubt they do now.
I hope some of this discussion opens people’s eyes to the truth about iron in our diet. Too much is not good, and I think it is unlikely that I don’t have enough, even though I am vegetarian. That being said, however, it would be a good idea to have your blood tested for iron the next time you go to the doctor, and particularly if you don’t feel good.
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