Right now scientists are researching Iron and its possible effects on COVID-19. Our body naturally needs Iron to help with growth and development. Another really important part that this mineral takes a part in is the creating of hormones. Recently doctors and scientists start thinking of another approach to handle the coronavirus outbreak. It is clear that for the moment we don’t have a medicine against it. However, there is another way to make sure we don’t get infected easily – having a strong immune system. In order to sustain it, we need to have all the nutrients our body needs, including Iron and many others.
Iron is an essential element that our body needs to function properly. This mineral is actually a component of hemoglobin. Our blood cells contain hemoglobin, which is responsible for the transportation of oxygen from the lungs throughout the body. You can find about two-thirds of the body’s Iron in hemoglobin. So what happens if you don’t have enough iron? The body can’t produce enough healthy oxygen-carrying red blood cells. This condition is actually called anemia. In this state, the body can’t get enough oxygen and it becomes harder to perform any activities. This is why, when a person suffers from anemia, most of the time he feels tired and fatigued.
However, this doesn’t just mean that you won’t be able to work out or be as productive as normal. The exhaustion will possibly affect your brain function, which means you will have trouble remembering things or even following a conversation. If you have anemia, that also means that your immune system won’t fight as effectively against infections as it would normally do.
Keep in mind that higher than normal levels of Iron can be even worse for you. When you have excess amounts of it in your body, that can lead to toxicity. If a healthy person, without the need for iron supplementation decides to take additional, that can lead to health problems. Those include upset stomach, constipation, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and even fainting. High doses of iron could also decrease the body’s ability to absorb zinc normally. Extremely high doses of iron can lead to organ failure, coma, convulsions, and even death. Almost every iron supplement has child-proof packaging to reduce the risk of a child overdosing with Iron.
Researchers implicate Iron overload as a contributor to the pathogenesis of COVID-19. Several of the symptoms of COVID-19, like inflammation, hypercoagulation, hyperferritinemia, and immune dysfunction are also similar to those of an iron overload.
Like we mentioned earlier, Iron is an essential mineral for the body, however free unbound iron, can result in excess amounts of it throughout the body. That can result in extremely reactive and potentially toxic situations. Keep in mind that OVERDOSING WITH IRON CAN BE DEADLY!
COVID-19 can also attack and destroy hemoglobin. This will result in the release of iron and discharge into the circulation. This could cause an iron overload. In order to compensate for the high iron level, the body boosts the production of ferritin. The raised ferritin levels can lead to the death of hepatic cells. This process on its own will trigger the release of even more free iron in the patient’s body. In this case, doctors treat the person with iron chelators.
An Iron chelator is a drug that removes the extra amounts of iron from the body. Recently there is evidence that iron chelators possess antiviral activities. Furthermore, the naturally occurring iron chelator lactoferrin (Lf) exerts immunomodulatory as well as anti-inflammatory effects. That means that it can bind to several receptors that the coronavirus uses. Thereby, the lactoferrin blocks its entry into the host cells. Iron chelators can help in treating and recovering from COVID-19.
Autor: Mihaela Ahchieva