[Medscape]Iron deficiency in middle age may increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.

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Spinach doesn’t really explain Popeye’s prodigious powers, but spinach and other iron-rich foods may have real-life superpowers: reduced risk of heart disease and early death in middle age.

Iron has an important role in our bodies, being an essential part of protein molecules that deliver oxygen to tissues. Without iron, the heart has to pump harder, which can lead to fatigue, shortness of breath, and an increased risk of heart attack and stroke.

Much of the research on iron and heart health focuses on understanding how iron deficiency affects people with heart disease. In a new study published in the journal ESC Heart Failure, researchers followed 12,164 people without heart disease for more than a decade to find out how iron deficiency affects heart disease risk. their.

At the start of the study, the average age of the participants was 59 years old. Nearly two-thirds of them have functional iron deficiency (lack of ability to use endogenously available iron), either insufficient iron stores for future use, or lack of circulating iron for immediate use. .

During more than a decade of follow-up, there were 2,212 deaths, including 573 deaths from cardiovascular causes.

The researchers found that people with functional iron deficiency in this study had a 24% higher risk of coronary heart disease. They also had a 26% higher risk of dying from a heart attack or other cardiovascular causes and a 12% higher risk of dying from any cause. The researchers found no link between functional iron deficiency and stroke.

The authors estimated that functional iron deficiency in these middle-aged adults accounted for 5.4% of all deaths, 11.7% of cardiovascular deaths, and 10.7% of cases. newly diagnosed coronary heart disease.

The researchers did not have information about iron supplements, which could affect the results, and tests that measure iron were performed only once. All of the participants lived in Europe, so it’s not clear if iron deficiency could affect people living elsewhere. The findings only show an association and do not confirm a causal relationship that iron deficiency causes these results.

Too much iron can lead to nausea, vomiting and, more seriously, internal bleeding and organ failure. A healthy diet that includes a variety of iron-rich foods — such as beef, clams, oysters, poultry, fish, legumes and green vegetables — usually provides enough iron without the need for additional foods. additional. Anyone worried about their iron levels can ask their doctor about tests.

The source :

ESC Heart Failure: “Association of iron deficiency with incident cardiovascular diseases and mortality in the general population.”

European Society of Cardiology.

Nourish, by WebMD: “Iron-Rich Foods.”

The article is translated and edited by ykhoa.org – please do not reup without permission.

Link: https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/961575

Translated by: Tuyet Duong

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