436713 tn?1408884730

low iron, b12, & folic acid HELP!

Over six weeks ago I went to the doctor because I was having a lot of hair thinning and joint pain.  The only thing that came up from my blood tests was that I was low in all b vitamins (especially b12 & folic acid) as well as iron. (I only know my saturation levels)  

For the last six weeks I have taken  two natural iron + b vitamin supplements. One is the liquid iron + b Floravital.  I also took MegaFood Blood Builder which has Iron + b12 + folic acid.  My doctor didn't test me for b vitamins unfortunately during this six week blood test... but he did just check my iron.  My Iron 6 weeks ago was 29% saturation, and now it is 18%! This seems absolutely crazy to me.  For the first time in my life I started an iron supplement, (in fact TWO), I have been eating liver at least once a week, having bone broth every day, fermented foods, meat at least twice/day, and upping my amounts of kale, chard, beet greens, broccoli, brussel sprouts etc. I was also taking vitamin c 1-2 times per day with my iron supplement. (I space my iron dosage over 3 times per day)  How on EARTH could my iron go down 11% after starting this iron rich protocol??

I do know that when I got the blood test six weeks ago, I was 15 days into my cycle. Around ovulation time.  (I have heavy, painful periods). When I got my most recent blood test, I had just finished my period two days ago. Could this have affected the reading?

I really could use some advice. I don't know why my body isn't holding on to b vitamins (especially b12 and folic acid) as well as iron.  I got a blood test for celiacs disease and also had an endoscopy. Both came up with nothing.  However I am gluten free, so perhaps it wouldn't pick up on it. I also was tested negative for lupus & rheumatoid arthritis. Could this possibly be lyme disease? Even though my west blot came up negative.

My doctor said my insurance said they won't cover any more tests or visits for at least 6 months because the think I am "abusing the system"

Feeling frustrated and alone in this. :(
4 Responses
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1806721 tn?1554333407
Lauren, I learned from my RE that there are different forms of b12, b6, and folic acid. I was tested positive for homozygous MTHFR C677T mutation, which means my body cannot properly convert folic acid and b12 into it's active form. Others got heterogenous C677T and A1098C suffer similar deficiencies. It happens to 5-10% of population, but can cause serious chronic illness.

You might want to look into that test.  If that happens to be your case, you may request for Rx Metanx (containing active forms of b vitamins). You can also buy 5-MTHF (active form of folic acid) available on Amazon. Because if this genetic deficiency, I need to supp 5-10x recommended normal dose.  
Helpful - 0
1530171 tn?1448129593
You may have a diminished ability to absorb iron and b vitamins.
Your B12 absorption depends on the presence of adequate Intrinsic Factor,
which in turn depends on adequate levels of gastric acid.
Foods containing bran, tea or coffee should be avoided as they interfere with iron absorption.
Also perspiration carries iron out of the body, however, I suspect your biggest loss is through menstruation.
It takes a long time to increase your iron stores to acceptable levels,
possibly up to one year, with proper supplementation and diet along with frequent monotoring.

Best wishes.
Helpful - 0
436713 tn?1408884730
Thanks guys. Do you think my test results came down by 11 points even though I have been taking iron because I has just finished my period two days prior? Is it normal for women to have more iron in their blood towards the middle and end of their cycle than the beginning??
Helpful - 0
1530171 tn?1448129593
It is a logical conclusion based on these facts:
Loss of blood during menstruation ranges from 60 ml- 250 ml
One ml of blood loss equals 0.5 mg of iron loss.

Helpful - 0
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