Iron…why do we need iron?
Because, when we’re iron deficient we can become anemic, causing tiredness, fatigue, weakness, dizziness, irritability, shortness of breath or depression. Other signs may include pale skin, brittle nails, chest pain, cold hands or feet or an irregular heartbeat. Less common symptoms of anemia include pica, an urge to eat ice and other nonfood items. Low iron may also cause sexual dysfunction and problems concentrating on mental tasks.
Boy, sounds like all the symptoms of hypothyroidism!
Check with your practitioner and get a lab test to check your iron if you have these symptoms, but most of them may just be your thyroid. Don’t assume that just an over the counter iron tablet is the answer.
Iron, in addition to iodine, selenium and zinc,
are essential for normal thyroid hormone metabolism.
LOW IRON LEVELS CAN AFFECT T4 AND T3
low iron levels decreases deiodinase activity, i.e. it slows down the conversion of T4 to T3. Biologically, insufficient iron levels may be affecting the first two of three steps of thyroid hormone synthesis by reducing the activity of the enzyme “thyroid peroxidase”, which is dependent on iron.
Thyroid peroxidaxe brings about the chemical reactions of adding iodine to tyrosine (amino acid), which then produces T4 and T3. Insufficient iron levels alter and reduces the conversion of T4 to T3, besides binding T3. Additionally, low iron levels can increase circulating concentrations of TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone).
IRON AND PRODUCTION OF CORTISOL
Even worse, good iron levels are needed in the production of cortisol via the adrenal cortex. An iron-containing protein is present in high amounts in the adrenal cortex and is involved in the synthesis of corticosterone. So by having low iron, you can potentially lower your cortisol levels.