Iron drops DRASTICALLY after eight days of physical activity


Q: I am stumped.

I am a healthy female, age 62, menopausal. Three months ago, after 8 days of heavy physical activity/stress, my serum iron dropped miserably: from 104 to 54. In eight days! I had great energy when I started: I became achey, tired on the 8th day and afterwards. My TIBC has been near the bottom of the range all year, which I think is from a one time serious mold inhalation during leaf blowing of wet leaves just over a year ago. I was sick for three months from that last summer. I recovered.

But...even with iron of 54 and low TIBC, my ferritin was 76, just four points lower than it was when my iron was 104!

I then initiated iron supplementation--200 mg elemental iron a day. I added lactoferrin (because of low TIBC), plus Vit. C and lemon juice in water. I also used liver supports: Liver Life, which has mushrooms, milk thistle. After 8 weeks: my iron was STILL 54, TIBC was five points lower, and ferritin was now 95! Hemoglobin also just lightly dropped to 15.3 (13 - 16.8). I'm at a high altitude.

I assumed that my ferritin went up due to anemia of chronic disease, but I'm not aware of ANY inflammation, and am healthy. I also wonder if the extreme physical activity/stress lowered a co-factor like B6, Not sure.

Why would 8 days of extreme physical activity metabolize my iron that quickly, and now I can't raise it at all other than ferritin?

Symptoms:  When iron was 54, I was very achey. After iron supplement, iron is still 54, Ferritin up 20 points, and I'm not achy, but I will be tired after activity if I'm not on iron.

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