Cloverdale Pharmasave Health Centre
5778 176A Street
Surrey, British Columbia
V3S 4H3
P: 604-576-2888
F: 604-576-2882
Store Hours:

Monday – Friday: 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Saturday: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sundays: 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
Statutory Holidays: CLOSED


Pumping Up Your Iron

December 13, 2023

Feeling overly tired or weak? Have pale skin and feeling cold? Experiencing chest pain or a rapid heartrate? Feeling an uncomfortable tingling or a creepy-crawly sensation in your legs? Fighting infections frequently? These are some of the possible signs and symptoms of iron deficiency and if you experience all of these, you should speak with your doctor. Iron is a very important mineral in our bodies as it is an essential component of hemoglobin, which carries oxygen to the tissues. In addition, it is a component of vital enzymes in the production of energy as well as a co-factor in the synthesis of several neurotransmitters in the brain. Pregnant women, young children, those with bleeding disorders or digestive disorders (e.g., Coeliac disease), those on strict diets, and the elderly are at greater risk of being iron deficient.

If your doctor has assessed your condition and suggested you take an iron supplement, you have many options available to you…so how do you choose? Keep in mind that inherent to taking an iron supplement is the risk for constipation. This is because unabsorbed iron will nourish certain microbes in the intestinal tract, which can upset the normal microbiota thus resulting in decreased intestinal wall contraction…otherwise known as constipation. To make a long story short, the better the iron molecule is absorbed, the lesser the risk of experiencing constipation. The main reason there are so many options on the market for iron supplements (and the varying prices) is that each company has come up with their own way of enhancing the absorption of iron. Here are a few that have garnered good feedback from our customers.

Of the many formulations available, FLORADIX® is a time-honoured formula that utilizes chelated plant iron along with ferrous gluconate. Constipation with this formula is almost unheard of and its gentle formula is safe to use in children as young as 4 years old.

HEME-IRON (by New Roots Herbal) utilizes heme iron polypeptide derived from animal sources for maximal intestinal absorption. This hematinic formula includes biologically active forms of folate (5-methyltetrahydrofolate) and vitamin B12 (methylcobalamin) to enhance the synthesis of hemoglobin and red blood cells, which in turn increases the blood’s oxygen carrying capacity and reduces some of the symptoms of iron deficiency.

Vegetarians who want a hematinic formula (i.e., a complete blood building formula) like Heme-Iron can consider FERRASORB® from Thorne Research. This formula links iron to the amino acid glycine, which the body readily absorbs resulting in a relatively high bioavailability for iron. Ferrasorb ® also contains active forms of B vitamins to enhance the synthesis of red blood cells. Along the same vein is the IRON BISGLYCINATE products from CanPrev, which are available in both capsule and liquid form.

Flora Health’s “FERRITIN+” takes things even further. Ferritin is a naturally protein-coated storage form of iron that is found in many organisms, including algae, bacteria, higher plants, and animals. The protein coating allows it to be a timed-release formula as well as offer maximum absorption. Ferritin+ is ideal for vegans as the ferritin is derived from organic peas. Just one capsule a day is typically adequate to maintain healthy iron levels, and it is even safe during pregnancy. Unlike many other iron supplements, Ferritin+ will not interact with other minerals or medications, making this an ideal choice for those already on multiple medications and/or supplements.

Most iron supplements should be taken on an empty stomach as food can significantly decrease the absorption of iron. Drinking citrus juices at the same time as your iron supplement can increase its absorption. Avoid taking dairy products at the same time as iron as calcium can compete for the absorption of iron. Always follow the label or your healthcare practitioner’s directions as taking too much iron can result in toxic effects.

Christine is a registered pharmacist with training in Natural Health Products and a passion for Integrative Medicine. She works at the unique family-operated Pharmasave location in Downtown Cloverdale, BC. Her pharmacy team specializes in natural remedies and compounding for both human and veterinarian use.

***All information posted and shared by Cloverdale Pharmasave is offered to provide information and choices regarding nutritional support for various health concerns, none of which is intended to be a treatment protocol for any disease state. The information does not replace seeking professional advice from your physician. Consult your health care practitioner before taking dietary supplements.

Articles, Q&A, blog posts and all materials submitted for publishing is the intellectual property of Cloverdale Pharmacy Ltd – reproduction in part or whole, in print or online, without written consent and permission is prohibited.

Oct Floradix SCM

Rx Refill
Transfer Prescriptions
Ideal Protein Weight Loss
Pharmasave eCare App