In episode 32, I tell the story of my personal story with iron overload, and weigh in on the proper use of blood tests and strategies to manage anemia, hemochromatosis, and everything in between. It's important to realize that these are the extremes, and there is a large middle space where we need to not only manage how much iron we accumulate, but how we direct it away from its disease-promoting roles and into its health-promoting roles.
This is a great primer on iron as well as a source of insights you may not have encountered elsewhere, such as the importance of oxidative stress as an independent regulator of ferritin, and the potential dangers of supplements designed to protect against oxidative stress like milk thistle, Protandim, sulforaphane, and green tea extract, for people at risk of anemia.
You can find the show notes to this episode at chrismasterjohnphd.com/32.
This episode is also brought to you by US Wellness Meats. Head to grasslandbeef.com and enter "Chris" at checkout to get 15% off your order as long as the final price is over $75 and you order fewer than 40 pounds of meat. You can use "Chris" to get the same discount twice.
In this episode, you will find all of the following and more: 0:33 Cliff Notes; 10:30 Introduction; 13:12 My personal story with iron overload; 30:12 The physiological roles of iron: hemoglobin, myoglobin, nitric oxide synthase, iron-sulfur clusters in the cytochromes of the electron transport chain, guanylyl cyclase, thyroid peroxidase (TPO), myeloperoxidase (MPO), oxygen transport, energy and ATP production, cellular regulation, thyroid hormone production, immunity; 38:20 Iron as a source of oxidative stress: free iron, hydrogen peroxide, and the hydroxyl radical, oxidative stress as an independent regulator of ferritin; 41:10 Regulation of iron status;
Ferritin, long-term storage, protector against pathogens, protector against oxidative stress; Transferrin, short-term iron storage; Hepcidin, master coordinator of iron metabolism; HFE, communicator between transferrin and hepcidin; 49:10 Regulation of dietary absorption of plant and animal iron; 51:00 Measuring and assessing iron status: complete blood count (MCH, MCV, RDW, CHr), full iron panel, sensitivity and specificity of transferrin saturation versus ferritin, differential interpretation of ferritin as a marker of iron overload, inflammation, or oxidative stress; 1:11:43 What to do for anemia: differentiate potential causes, iron in foods (heme, nonheme, vitamin C, polyphenols, phytate, calcium), iron in supplements (iron-saturated lactoferrin, heme iron, liposomal iron), avoid Nrf2-stimulating supplements (like Protandim, sulforaphane, milk thistle, green tea extract), importance of followup measurements of ferritin 01:21:03 What to do for iron overload: blood donation, dietary management, phlebotomy, chelation, importance of followup