Iron deficiency anemia means that your body doesn't have the iron stored to produce enough healthy red blood cells, which are needed to perform functions such as delivering oxygen to your cells and tissues.1
A number of factors can cause iron deficiency anemia. If you've been diagnosed with IDA, you might not be eating enough iron-rich foods to get the iron you need from your diet. Your body could also be having trouble absorbing iron from the foods you eat.
Alternatively, it's possible to get iron deficiency anemia due to blood loss, kidney failure, pregnancy, or menstruation.1,2
Whatever the cause, it's important to talk to your doctor if you're experiencing symptoms of iron deficiency anemia or you've been diagnosed with iron deficiency anemia. He or she can help you identify the reasons for your symptoms or the cause of your iron deficiency anemia and prescribe the treatment that's best for you.
1 Dietary supplement fact sheet: iron. National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements Web site. http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/iron.asp. Updated August 24, 2007. Accessed April 20, 2008.
2 Barton JC. Iron deficiency. In: Rakel RE, Bope ET, eds. Conn’s Current Therapy. Amsterdam, the Netherlands: Saunders/Elsevier; 2008:385-389.