Iron Supplements and Runners
| Angela Bekkala | April 19, 2018 |
This is a sponsored post on behalf of MegaFood® and was originally published on HappyFitMama.com. As a MegaBlogger, I receive compensation and products. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
For many years I didn’t believe in supplements. I took a multivitamin and an occasional probiotic but that was it. My aversion to supplements stemmed from a group run I did years ago with a very successful long distance runner who mentioned she didn’t take vitamins since they “only give you expensive pee”. That stuck in my brain. Plus I thought I ate a well-rounded diet, exercised and took good care of my body. My blood work from my yearly checkups always came back great.
Why would I need to add supplements?
My training isn’t usually a case of the too's - too long, too hard, too much. I was feeling great until I had this painful spot on my fibula last year that felt like it was a bruise but there was no sign of a bruise on my skin. I was shocked when I found out it was a stress factor.
After several tests I was diagnosed with Osteopenia at 39 years old. I thought I did everything that’s supposed to build strong bones.
My PCP was just as confused at the results and sent me to an Endocrinologist who recommended taking Vitamin D and Calcium supplements. That’s what I’ve been doing ever since.
For the past 6 months, an Endocrinologist has kept a close eye on me. I get a round of blood work every few months to make sure I'm absorbing calcium properly and that my parathyroid hormone level is in a good range. She also started to watch my iron levels and suggested a supplement. As a female runner I'm in the lower range of what’s considered “acceptable” for iron levels.
Aside from incorporating plenty of iron-rich foods in my diet, I started taking an iron supplement called Blood Builder from MegaFood®, which delivers 26 mgs of gentle, effective FoodState® Iron per serving. It’s clinically proven to increase iron levels and reduce fatigue without common gastrointestinal side effects such as nausea or constipation.*
Adverse and uncomfortable side effects tend to keep women from taking iron supplements. In a clinical study, MegaFood brought Blood Builder to 23 premenopausal women that saw improvements in every measure of iron status over an eight week period. Along with a decrease in the severity and frequency of fatigue, there were no reports of negative GI side effects related to the supplement*.
Sounds like a win to me!
There are also convenient Blood Builder® Minis that can be taken twice a day. Both are made with whole foods, like beets and organic oranges, folic acid, B12 for healthy red blood cell production, and Vitamin C to support iron absorption. Bonus—you can take either one on an empty stomach with no worries!
It can be challenging to get all the essential nutrients we need from diet alone. Dietary supplements help fill nutritional gaps and promote overall health and wellness but they are meant to supplement, not substitute healthy habits. You should always be reaching for healthy foods before supplements. Good sources of dietary iron include: spinach, dark chocolate (yes!!!!), quinoa, lentils, broccoli, legumes, pumpkin seeds, and beef.
It just so happens that I will be working with MegaFood® this year as a MegaBlogger. I've trusted their supplements for years for numerous reasons. One is that they believe in using real whole foods that are non-GMO to make their vitamins. And second, it's a local company to me here in New Hampshire. I'm excited to share more about MegaFood® in the upcoming months!
I'm a believer in supplements now!
If you are concerned that your iron levels are low, please see your physician to get your serum ferritin levels checked.
Have you had your iron levels checked?
What supplements do you take regularly?
*This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.