Too little of these nutrients will lead to some type of anaemia, which all share general symptoms.
According to Nursing Times, there are seven warning signs of anaemia to be aware of. These are:
- Breathlessness (dyspnoea)
- Irregular heart beats (palpitations)
- Ringing in your ears (tinnitus)
- Loss of appetite
Normally, intrinsic factor binds with vitamin B12 so that the nutrient can be re-absorbed into the body.
When a person had pernicious anaemia, this doesn’t happen, causing a deficiency in the long term.
The body usually stores enough vitamin B12 to last up to four years, but pernicious anaemia begins in most people over the age of 60.
Meanwhile, folate can only be stored for roughly four months inside of the body.
The water-soluble vitamin is needed in a daily diet, said the Nursing Times.
An unhealthy, unbalanced diet is a likely cause, or irritable bowel syndrome which can cause absorption issues.
The body may be more demanding for folate for any of these possible reasons:
- Are pregnant
- Have cancer
- Sickle cell anaemia
- Inflammation in the body
As for an iron deficiency, the NHS explained heavy periods, pregnancy and internal bleeding are likely culprits.
Any of these deficiencies can be identified by a blood test arranged by your GP.
- Iron deficiency – take iron supplements
- B12 deficiency – take B12 supplements
- Folate deficiency – take folic acid supplements
Your GP may advise you to take supplements for a specified duration if a deficiency is identified.
You will likely have a repeat blood test at a later date to check if the deficiency has been remedied.
Foods rich in iron:
- Kidney beans
- Edamame beans
- Dried apricots
- Soy bean flour
Foods rich in vitamin B12:
Food rich in folate:
- Brussels sprouts
- Spring greens
- Kidney beans