Entries in Iron (3)


Study Finds Common Mineral Could Bring PMS Relief

Comstock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Women who suffer from premenstrual syndrome, or  PMS, know the physical and emotional symptoms can often be miserable. Now researchers say a common mineral may bring relief.

Many women take iron supplements to fight fatigue. A study reported in the American Journal of Epidemiology finds that an iron-rich diet can relieve the symptoms of PMS by up to 40 percent.
The researchers at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst started studying the total iron intake -- from both diet and supplements -- of some 3,000 women without PMS.
Over 10 years, a little more than 1,000 of them were diagnosed with PMS, while the others remained free of symptoms.
Those who took in over 20 milligrams a day of iron from plant-based sources and supplements reduced their risk for PMS, according to the study findings.
Scientists think the connection is that iron is needed to produce serotonin, a brain chemical involved in regulating moods.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Researchers Tell Kids to Drink Their Milk -- But How Much?

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(TORONTO) -- Pediatricians often recommend milk to help kids grow strong bones. We tell our children to drink milk, but how much "moo" juice is too much of a good thing?
A Canadian study of more than 1,300 children helps with the answer.
Published in the journal Pediatrics, the research found that two cups of milk a day -- or 500 milliliters -- are enough to maintain healthy vitamin D and iron for most children. Children with darker skin pigmentation may need three to four cups of milk a day to maintain the same amount of vitamin D in the winter months unless they take a vitamin D supplement.
"We started to research the question because professional recommendations around milk intake were unclear and doctors and parents were seeking answers," said the study's lead author, Dr. Jonathon Maguire, according to the Toronto Sun.

The authors say about 70 percent of American children drink cow's milk every day.
The right balance is important because, while too little milk can mean not enough vitamin D, too much milk can lower a child's level of iron.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Rare Condition Means Another Dry St. Patrick's Day

Courtesy Ginger Crowley(LOS ANGELES) -- Ginger Crowley, a flame-haired Irish-American, says something called the Celtic Curse stands between her and raising a pint of Guinness this St. Patrick's Day.

Last year, as others celebrated the holiday, Crowley learned she had triple the normal amount of iron in her blood, a likely result of hereditary hemochromatosis. 

The common genetic disorder, also called iron overload, affects about 1 million Americans, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, most often those of Northern European, particularly Irish, descent.  Excess iron buildup can damage organs, especially the liver, which has put alcohol off-limits.

"It's pretty bizarre that… a people who should never drink celebrate a saint's day by drinking," said Crowley, a petite redhead in her 50s.  "It does a trip on one's head to be told that you have a genetic blood disorder that could kill you."

On March 17, 2011, as Crowley awaited results of a confirmatory genetic test, she and her longtime boyfriend spent the day reading about hemachromatosis.  Not only could she not drink anymore, she also would have to give up raw fish, especially shellfish.  And no more iron-fortified foods -- Crowley switched to unfortified pastas made in Italy. 

She would also have to stop eating food cooked on iron skillets or grills, and avoid vitamin C supplements.

The Los Angeles-based media consultant, former journalist and actress felt relieved to have an explanation for over two years of unexplained fatigue, heart palpitations and blood pressure spikes that gynecologists, cardiologists and others had misdiagnosed as symptoms of menopause, depression and hypertension.

But she also was terrified to learn that people with hemochromatosis "get liver cancer, that they die of cirrhosis and claim they hadn't been heavy drinkers or drinkers at all," she said in an interview Thursday.

"That's the kicker: that you can die of a sudden heart attack.  I see Irish names now of people that pass away without any seeming cause, and I go 'bingo,'" Crowley said.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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