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Oh NO! 29 weeks and my iron is low!

1895 Views 39 Replies 24 Participants Last post by  applejuice
Is there any way to fix this before the homebirth? My midwife requires a 12 on the iron test, and I just had the test done today and it was 11.3.
Can it raise up enough to be ok in time for a hb? Last night I ate a steak and this morning took my prenatals just so I would pass, and I still didn't.
Ugh...please tell me this can be fixed!
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I had low iron around the time that you did (I'm 35 weeks now) I think it mine was 11.6, and my midwife wasn't too concerned and just recommended some iron supplements. I believe it was called Floridix - but can someone confirm that for me? She'll test my iron again next week.

Someone care to elaborate??
There's a very good liquid iron suppliment out there. I'm going to see my midwife tomorrow so I'll talk to her about it and get the name of it for you.
YUP! That's what it was, Floridix. It will fix you right up!

If you can get over the taste, I believe it's one of the best ways to boost your iron. All my evidence is anecdotal (from various friends) but I'd say give it a try.

You can buy it online at and lots of other places.
Ah man...there's wheat germ in that.
I'm gluten intolerant (Celiac's) so I can't have wheat there a gluten free version?
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Don't have an answer to previous question - but there are recipes for iron tonics made from herbs in Aviva Jill Romm's The Natural Pregnancy Book, along with other dietary/supplemental recommendations. I didn't use them, but I probably should have. I think you've got plenty of time to up your iron levels - I didn't find out I had a problem till 36 weeks and then DS was born at 38 weeks and I think my pp hemoragh was probably partly because of low iron. Next time I am asking to be tested more often (my CNM only tested me for iron twice, once in the 1st trimester and not again until 36 weeks.)
I think there might be one that is gluten free, I'm not sure though.
We also recommend that our ladies use Alfalfa, liquid Chlorophyll and increase the B vitamins. this often does the trick without even using any extra supplemental iron. I forgot, but I assume you are already taking a prenatal?
Yeah, I'm taking a gluten free prenatal (I can't remember what it is now...Twin Labs, maybe?) It has 100% of the daily iron in it, but apparently that's not enough. I don't want to OD on iron because I'm still nursing and that wouldn't be good either. But, I'll also pretty much do anything safe to raise the levels!
Yes, Floradix comes in a glutin and yeast free variety called Floravital. It tastes like prune juice, which isn't such a bad taste (although not delightful either).

It was recommended to me by a friend who said it's the only iron suppliment that didn't cause her to become constipated. When she went in for her iron test in late pregnancy, the nurse said, "Wow! Your iron levels are great. I've never seen anyone test this high during pregnancy. What iron suppliment are you taking??"
Has anyone tried spirolina? I just read about that, and that sounds interesting as well....
ok, your iron is FINE! it's not low at all. not at all.

are there really mws out there treating for anemia with numbers like that????
Curious - what are your numbers? When do you test/advise treatment? I so respect you and the way you operate, I'm always curious about the differences between your practice and what I see and hear about here and elsewhere.

Here in AZ - 10/30 is the legal hemoglobin/hematocrit cut of for homebirth (although I suppose if you decline iron testing there is not much you can do). I was 9.4/2? (blanking at the actual crit number) at 26 weeks (tested when I was in hosp with kidney stones), and 10/30 exactly at 30 weeks (retest by urologist at my check-up). Took floridex, alfalfa, nettles, RRL, chroryphly in the meantime.

Almost 34 weeks now and am curious to see where my numbers fall now....I experienced pph last time and was pretty darn weak for my first few days post partum - so I want to have good, strong blood this time around.

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Michel Odent has some very interesting research - research that's backed up by evidence and its' really surprising.

He says - and I'm beginning to agree - that the women with the lower numbers (including right under 10 for hgb) have better outcomes as far as healthier babies and fewer hemorrhages.

I was always taught that anemia meant under 11, and that there was a risk of postpartum hemorrhage with low hgb. However, I don't think that this is true.

I test, but only treat if the woman feels badly: out of breath easy, light conjunctiva, pale skin, lots of chronic fatigue.

I think that looking at the beginning of pregnancy numbers is more important than mid-pregnancy (I will often skip a mid-preg CBC if her beginning was good). If the mom starts out low, chances are with the increased blood volume (which peaks at 30 weeks), she may feel worse than someone who started out higher. Then again, every woman is different!

Definitely having lower numbers COULD predispose someone to feeling worse after any hemorrhage. However, I am starting to really feel that PPH happens when third stage is messed with and there are too many hands on the mom/baby right after birth.
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Thanks for your input - I was very, very abnomally fatigued (and feeling much better now) but then, was also recovering from kidney infection/kidney stones......

And yes - my third stage was a little messed with
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Originally Posted by pamamidwife
ok, your iron is FINE! it's not low at all. not at all.

are there really mws out there treating for anemia with numbers like that????
Oh, they're not calling it anemia at all... But, the hb midwives require at least a 12 or they won't do the hb because of the hemmerage risk or something like that. An 11.3 is high for me--I'm usually much lower--9 or 10 (mainly because of the g/f diet, nursing, and being pregnant).
That is so bizarre! Most states I know require a 10 or above for a homebirth. A 12 at 30 weeks is something I NEVER see.

i've been considered anemic since early on in pregnancy. i keep going back and forth and i figure i'm right on the edge at this point. last time they checked, iwas just under, but that was at a time when even normal pregnancies dip down. i'm getting it checked againon thursday,so we'll see how it's going.

my midwife gave me floradix and also recommended taking 1 tablespoon of blackstrap molasses w/ 250 mg of vitamin c per day. when taking iron supplements,try not to take it with milk since the calcium makes it harder for your body to take in the iron i guess.

so...blackstrap molasses doesn't taste all that great, so i make fruit shakes...
i put in: ice, floradix, blackstrap molasses, orange juice, white grape peach juice,strawberries, bananas, whatever other fruit i have and some protein powder. they come out pretty good and i can't taste the molasses or floradix at all.

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I'm seconding the black strap molasses (though we would also be fine with your levels....).

Here is my recipe (I stole if from a friend, so it isn't really mine, I guess):

1 tablespoon blackstrap molasses
1-3 tablespoons nondairy creamer (I recommend White Wave French Silk)
1/2 to 1 cup cold water
a couple of ice cubes.

Shake well. Use imagination. If imagination used, tastes like a caramel latte. :LOL

Seriously, it is not too bad, and brings up levels nicely. You have plenty of time to bring your levels up.

How do they test, by the way? A venous sample is almost always several points (as in, tenths) higher than a finger stick.

Good luck!

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