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Can Iron Supplements Cause Anxiety Symptoms?

Can Iron Supplements Cause Anxiety Symptoms?

Nov 03, 2022

Can iron supplements cause anxiety? When most people think of iron, they think of hemoglobin, which is the protein in our red blood cells that carries oxygen from our lungs to the rest of the body. While it’s true that iron is a key component of hemoglobin, it’s also true that too much iron can be just as harmful as too little.

Excess iron can cause a wide range of problems, including liver disease, heart problems, and even cancer. Yet many people think that taking an iron supplement is a good idea because:

  1. They are unaware of the risks associated with excess iron.
  2. They don't realize how easy it is to get too much iron.
  3. They mistakenly believe that iron supplements are necessary for good health.

Iron supplements are only necessary for people who are iron deficient. And even then, iron supplements should only be taken under the supervision of a doctor. So, if you’re not iron deficient, there’s no need to take iron supplements.

Can iron supplements cause anxiety? Let's find out.

Table of Contents

Iron is an essential mineral that our bodies need to function properly. It's found in foods like red meat, dark leafy greens, and beans.

Iron helps carry oxygen in the blood and plays a role in cell growth. Most people get enough iron from their diet and don't need supplements.

However, some people may not be getting enough iron due to poor dietary intake or certain health conditions that make it difficult for the body to absorb iron from food. This can lead to iron deficiency anemia, which can cause fatigue, weakness, and other symptoms.

Some research has suggested that low levels of iron may be linked with anxiety disorders.

One study found that women with lower levels of ferritin (a protein that stores iron) were more likely to have a panic disorder than women with higher levels of ferritin.

Another study found that children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) who were treated with iron supplements had improvements in ADHD symptoms, including reduced impulsivity and increased concentration.

However, it's important to note that taking too much iron can also be harmful and even fatal if taken in large doses over time.

Therefore, it's crucial to speak with your doctor before starting any kind of supplement regimen.

How Can Iron Deficiency Lead to Anxiety?

Iron deficiency can lead to anemia, which can cause fatigue and weakness. A lack of iron can also lead to restless leg syndrome and pica (an uncontrollable urge to eat non-food items).

Iron deficiency has been linked to anxiety and depression.

Low levels of iron can cause the body to produce more adrenaline and noradrenaline. These hormones are responsible for the "fight or flight" response, which can lead to feelings of anxiety.

Iron supplements can help to treat iron deficiency and improve anxiety symptoms.


Iron deficiency is the most common nutritional deficiency in the world, and it can cause a variety of health problems. The most common symptom of iron deficiency is fatigue, but it can also cause other symptoms like pale skin, shortness of breath, dizziness, and headaches.

If you're feeling tired all the time, or you have other symptoms of iron deficiency, it's important to get tested by your doctor. A simple blood test can determine if you have iron deficiency. If you do, your doctor may recommend iron supplements or other treatment options.

Can Iron Supplements Cause Anxiety?

It's no secret that iron is an important nutrient for our overall health.

But did you know that too much iron can actually lead to anxiety and other mood disorders?

While iron is essential for carrying oxygen in our blood and for maintaining energy levels, too much iron can cause oxidative stress and inflammation in the body. This can lead to anxiety, depression, and other mood disorders.

If you're currently taking an iron supplement, it's important to talk to your doctor about the right dosage for you.

In some cases, reducing the amount of iron you're taking can help to alleviate anxiety and other mood disorders.

Side Effects of Taking Too Much Iron

Excess iron can build up in the body and cause serious health problems. Too much iron can cause iron poisoning, which can be fatal.

Symptoms of iron poisoning include vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain, and seizures.

If you think you or someone you know has iron poisoning, seek medical attention immediately. Iron supplements are generally safe when taken as directed.

When to See a Doctor

Most people experience anxiety at some point in their lives, but for some, it can be a chronic condition.

If you have anxiety that is impacting your daily life, it's important to talk to your doctor. They can help you determine if your anxiety is due to a medical condition, and if so, whether iron supplements could help.


Can iron supplements cause anxiety? There is some evidence to suggest that low levels of iron may be linked with anxiety disorders. However, it's important to speak with a doctor before starting any kind of supplement regimen.

Taking too much iron can be harmful and even fatal if taken in large doses over time. Therefore, it's crucial to speak with your doctor about your anxiety and iron levels before taking any supplements.

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