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Iron is a mineral that is needed by our bodies to carry oxygen from our lungs and though our entire body. Research shows that iron is a part of many enzymes our bodies use in cell function. It is important that every woman and mother is aware of her iron levels so that she does not become deficient. If a woman does not have enough iron (anemia), there is a higher risk of adversely affecting the function of several organs throughout her body (Recommendations to Prevent and Control Iron Deficiency in the United States. MMWR 1998; 47 (No. RR-3) p. 5, 2014).

The Role of Iron

Iron helps our bodies’ store and use oxygen. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (2014), states that iron deficiency is a concern because:

  1. Iron deficiency can delay normal infant motor function (normal activity and movement) or mental function (normal thinking and processing skills).
  2. Iron deficiency, also called anemia, during pregnancy can increase risk for small or early (preterm) babies.
  3. Iron deficiency can cause fatigue that impairs the ability to do physical work in adults (CDC, 2014, Para. 5-7).

Supporting Research and References:

  1. Recommendations to Prevent and Control Iron Deficiency in the United States. MMWR 1998;47 (No. RR-3) p. 5. (2014). Nutrition for Everyone: Basics: Iron and Iron Deficiency | DNPAO | CDC. Retrieved September 7, 2014, from
  2. Iron-Consumer (PDF)