Iron is a key mineral for a healthy-looking skin and hair.
One of the main symptoms of iron deficiency visible on the skin is a dull, sallow, pale looking skin, with dark spots and under eye circle.
When there is low level of iron in the body, there is a low level of haemoglobin (a protein in Red blood cells that carries oxygen through blood vessels) produced, thus there is a low level of oxygenated blood distributed in the body. The body prioritizes vital organs before hair and skin. This impacts the skin colour and health.
Iron benefits for skin
Iron boosts wound healing
According to this study, sufficient iron consumption contributes to faster wound healing.
For a better wound healing, it is primordial to have a correct supply of oxygen to the body.
Iron boosts the formation of RBCs (red blood cells), which is the essential constituent of haemoglobin that carries oxygen (oxygenated blood) to the body.
To promote faster wound healing, it is advised to boost your diet in iron rich nutrients.
2.Improves the appearance of under-eye circles and dark spots
Under-eye circles and dark spots are mainly caused by low iron levels in the body, thus insufficient amount of oxygenated blood is carried to the skin.
Consuming healthy amounts of iron improves the appearance of the skin and under-eyes.
3.Gives your skin a pinkish glow
When one’s skin tone is unusually pale it is mainly due to lack of iron, thus lack of RBCs (red blood cells) in the body. The reason behind is that when there is low level of RBCs in the body, there is a reduction of oxygenated blood flow in the body which also affects skin color making it look pale and sallow (an unhealthy yellowish tone or even pale brown).
However, when one’s skin has a natural pinkish glow, it is high probable due to a healthy level of iron in the body (therefore leading to a healthy level of RBCs which shows on the skin). Consuming healthy amounts of iron rich foods can give back your skin a healthy pinkish glow.
4. About Skin Aging
Both high level and low level or iron can cause premature aging. Studies have shown that either too little or too much iron can lead to premature aging.
It is important to consume healthy amount of iron to prevent premature aging.
Iron benefits for hair
Helps revert hair loss
Hair loss can be linked to many factors. One of the main factors is iron deficiency.
When the body has enough iron level, oxygen reaches the cells that boosts hair growth.
This study demonstrates that low level of ferritin (iron) in women lead to excessive hair loss.
2. Protects hair from premature greying
According to this study, low levels of ferritin (iron) can cause premature greying. When premature greying is present, iron supplements can help with the condition.
3. Iron helps improving hair health
Healthy levels of iron in one’s body lead to, shiny, smooth hair and an improvement of the hair texture. Correct amount of iron boost the oxygenated blood flow to the hair roots and scalp.
4. Promotes faster hair growth
This study demonstrates that iron contributes to hair growth. When there are low levels of iron in blood, it may lower the oxygen flowing to cells that promotes hair growth.
Therefore, it is important to consume healthy amounts of iron for a better hair growth.
When low level of iron is present in the body, the skin and hair may receive less oxygenated blood. This affects the skin and hair health.
Symptoms of Iron deficiency on Skin
-Pale and sallow skin
-weak hair health
Symptom of Iron deficiency on health and body:
Shortness of breath
Fast heart rate
Poor brain health
Poor immune system
Restless Leg syndrome
Neurological syndromes (ADHD in children)
Cold hands and feet
Does iron make your skin glow?
Yes. When there is a healthy level of iron in your blood, red blood cells carry a healthier amount of oxygen to the skin. This contributes a beautiful pinkish flow on your skin.
Does iron make you look younger?
An overdose of iron consumption is known to lead to premature aging as well as consuming to little iron. A healthy balance of iron consumption is key to make you look younger
How does iron affect the skin?
Iron deficiency can lead to pale or sallow yellowish looking skin. Its deficiency can also lead to under eye circles and dark spots. Consuming healthy amounts of iron can help improving these skin condition.
Does iron change skin color?
To little iron can cause sallow, pale, yellowish skin tone. Iron supplements can cause skin darkening to a certain level. However, consuming healthy amounts of iron lead to a healthy pinkish glowing skin.
What does low iron do to your appearance?
Low iron leads to pale, sallow, yellowish skin tone. Its deficiency can also cause under eye circles, and dark spots. Consuming healthy amounts of iron can improve skin’s appearance and promote healthy pinkish glow.
Can low iron affect your face?
Yes. Low iron leads to pale, sallow, yellowish skin tone. Its deficiency can also cause under eye circles, and dark spots. Consuming healthy amounts of iron can improve skin’s appearance and promote healthy pinkish glow.
Can low iron cause gray hair?
Yes. Low levels of iron can cause premature greying in hair. When premature greying is present, iron (ferritin) supplements can help with the condition.
Food sources Iron
Heme (Animal) Sources of Iron:
Non-Heme (Plant) Sources of Iron:
Plant sourced iron containing foods are aborbed less by one’s body, and vitamin C is required for a better absorption of iron in that case.
-Dried fruits (apricots, raisins)
-legumes (peas, beans, lentils, tofu)
-dark green leafy vegetables (spinach, kale)
To boost iron absorption:
Especially if you take iron supplements prescribed by your doctor, or you prefer consuming non-heme sources of iron, you should consider consuming more vitamin C in your diet for a better iron absorption.
Vitamin C containing foods that enhance iron absorption:
Careful! These can interfere with iron absorption:
Plus, avoid taking iron-rich foods alongside with calcium (such as milk) because it can limit iron absorption.
-Limit your consumption of polyphenol-rich beverages (such as tea and coffee) especially when consuming iron rich foods/supplements prescribed by your doctor.
Excessive amount of iron consumption either from food or supplements can have negative effects on your health, such as:
-risk of type-2 diabetes
If you think you have iron deficiency, talk with your doctor.
This content does NOT provide medical advice. It is intended for informational purposes only. It is NOT a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult your own doctor for more information.