MICRONUTRIENT DEFICIENCIES: Iron, Vitamin B12, Folate deficiency; other deficiencies; Vegan/Vegetarian Diet

Iron Deficiency anemia or having low iron stores is caused by a lack of iron in the blood stream which leads to your body not being able to create enough healthy red blood cells to transport oxygen around your body. The body becomes tired and drained of energy. Changing your diet to ensure you consume iron rich foods will help, as well as iron supplements prescribed by your physician.

Vitamin B12 deficiency. Vitamin B12 helps your body make DNA and your red blood cells. Our body does not make vitamin B12 and we have to consume it from foods.

You might be more likely to develop B12 deficiency if you have atrophic gastritis in which your stomach lining has been thinned or having Pernicious anemia which makes it hard for your body to absorb vitamin B12. As you get older, your body has a hard time absorbing this vitamin.

Folate deficiency. Folate is a type of Vitamin B that can help you make and repair DNA and produce red blood cells. Not eating enough folate can lead to deficiency within a few weeks. Folate deficiency causes anemia. Folate is particularly important in women of childbearing ages.

Vegan/Vegetarian Diet. Vegetarian diets usually exclude meats, chicken and fish. Some vegetarian choose to eat eggs and dairy products, while some exclude these foods as well. The nutrients you take in depend upon the food choices you make. It is important to know how to replace meat with nutritious alternatives such as soy, legumes, nuts, and seeds.