I'm 18 years old and have been taking multivitamin + mineral pills for about 4months because I had an iron deficiency (something like 40 a week). The doctor gave me iron pills, but they had something like 100mg each which I thought was too much so I didn't take and instead took the multivitamin tablets.
But lately, I've been having some weakness in my feet and in my hands as well as having my leg muscles 'go to sleep' when i cross them for more than 2minutes, which didn't happen before, and I have a strong feeling this is iron related. I've read some stuff up on having too much iron, so I thought that this could be because I've not had enough vitamin C to absorb the iron, but the multivitamin had vitamin C in them.
Now I'm going to start taking cod liver oil tablets instead (which have no iron) and rely on my diet for iron (which contains mainly cereal and meat - beef 2-3 times a week)
Am I doing the right thing, because I thought you would have iron deficiency for these symptoms? My theory is that my body is becoming uncapable of storing iron too much due to too much iron - 11mg in the multivitamin tablets along with my usual diet.
One can have too much iron, but it's really hard to do that from the iron you eat in your daily diet. The types of people who end up getting "iron overload" are those who have metabolic problems in the cellular handling of iron (i.e. hemachromatosis) and also people who are receiving chronic blood transfusions.
If you're 18, the more important reason is WHY you have iron overload. A lot of doctors seem to overlook this fact. Yes, one treats iron deficiency by repleting iron stores, but why are you losing it in the first place? The most usual causes in younger people are either heavy periods in women, or chronic gastrointestinal bleeding from a polyp or ulcer or something like that. Do you have any problems with gastrointestinal bleeding? Has your doctor investigated you for the underlying cause of the iron deficiency?
Right, but what you are describing are SYMPTOMS of iron deficiency. But no one has ever checked you for WHY you have iron deficiency. Iron deficiency from a diet poor in iron is not something that happens in the developed world.
A diet poor in iron can be a cause, but it's less likely in a developed society unless you are chronically malnourished. You're a young man, and in the absence of not eating well for months and months, being iron deficient is unlikely without an underlying cause. Do you have bowel symptoms? Chronic diarrhea? A history of colon polyps or cancer in your family? Weight loss? Have you had any other sicknesses in your life? Any hospitalizations? Do you take anti-inflammatory medications on a regular basis? Any problems with heartburn or stomach pains?
There were about 6 other questions in that last message--did you miss them?
How does your doctor know your stomach lining is "swollen". Did you have upper endoscopy done (i.e. when they put a camera in to your stomach?) It's possible you have something like gastritis or even a small gastric or duodenal ulcer which is slowly bleeding thus causing your iron deficiency.