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Ferrotoxic Disease Omnibus

ferrotoxic iron aging disease

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#1 Dorian Grey

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Posted 07 May 2017 - 10:47 PM


Age related iron accumulation & Ferrotoxic Disease has been getting increased attention over the past few years and I want to start a thread as a reference for the multiple sources I have found.  

 

For some perspective on the importance of this issue; Jerome L Sullivan MD, PhD started off the "Iron Hypothesis" of aging and disease in the 1980's with his paper describing as a pathologist, how age related iron accumulation in males appeared to be responsible for their greater susceptibility to heart disease and reduced lifespan compared to females, who naturally lose iron throughout much of their lives through menstruation.  

 

Genetic Hemochromatosis, which results in abnormal accumulation of excess iron was originally called "Bronze Diabetes" due to the almost universal finding of diabetes associated with excess iron and the abnormal bronzing of the skin also seen in these patients.  

 

Another sign/symptom of hemochromatosis is arthritis / arthropathy, typically showing up as unusual joint degeneration in the hands, often early in middle age.  Generalized arthritis is a common enough finding in the elderly, but degenerative arthritis of the hands appearing in middle age was an atypical finding associated with the disease.  Arthritis in those with hemochromatosis is not limited to the hands alone, and generalized early onset arthritis is a common finding. 

 

Heart Disease, Diabetes, Early Onset Arthritis...  Could things get any worse?  

 

The association between iron levels and cancer is a relatively recent revelation, but the accumulating evidence is becoming quite compelling and increasingly difficult to ignore.  Look for extensive evidence of this in the links below.  

 

For most doctors, iron deficiency anemia in menstruating females and the "anemia of chronic disease" in the elderly, are all too common in their practice, and it's often difficult for them to grasp a concept of patients having "too much iron".  The normal range for blood ferritin (stored iron) set by most labs is remarkably wide, at around 20-200 for females and 20-300+ for males; and normal is normal as far as most doctors are concerned.  

 

Hemochromatosis aside, is the more typical age related accumulation of iron causing a significant effect on health?  Iron fortification of food combined with increased consumption of red meat has only occurred during the last 60 years or so and the post war baby boom generation have been the first humans in history to live their entire lives eating iron fortified food.  Life expectancy has risen during this time (largely due to medical progress), but chronic disease, often with early onset has become epidemic.  Why have the boomers (and their children) been aging so poorly?  

 

It is increasingly becoming apparent that optimal iron levels may well be substantially lower than the upper lab/value range for normal, and a growing chorus of research is backing up this Iron Hypothesis of aging and disease.  Let's take a look at some of these.  

 

http://clinchem.aacc...tent/60/11/1362

 

Ferrotoxic Disease: The Next Great Public Health Challenge

 

Short, sweet, & compelling!  Life Expectancy for those with low levels of iron accumulation (ferritin below 200), 79.  For those with high levels (ferritin 600+), 55.  Would maintaining ferritin below 100 increase life expectancy even further?  

 

The Iron Disorders Institute opines: http://www.irondisor...org/iron-tests/

 

Under Serum Ferritin (SF): "Serum ferritin measurements range from about 15–200 ng/ml for women and 20–300 ng/ml for men.  Although laboratory ranges vary, most are close to these values.  Approximately 95% of the population will fall within “normal” population range simply because ranges are calculated using standard statistical methodology.  Except for the lower ends of these ranges, which can predict anemia or iron deficiency anemia, the ranges per se do not define optimal or even healthy iron levels.  Optimal SF ranges for men and women are 25 – 75 ng/ml.  Individuals with risk factors for diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, stoke, liver diseases and cancer face amplified risks proportional to the amount of stored body iron over and above the optimal range.

 

Numerous medical research studies have demonstrated that serum ferritin above 100 ng/ml has been associated with decreased cardio vascular fitness and increased incidences of: atherosclerosis, type 2 diabetes, cancer gout and accelerated aging including osteoporosis and sarcopenia (muscle wasting) due to oxidative stress.  Fortunately this does not pertain to everyone; ferritin levels and stored iron can remain safely contained, even when ferritin exceeds 150 ng/ml, if the body’s natural antioxidant defenses are working properly (see section on GGT)."

--------------------------

Turning to the blogosphere, Richard Nicoley's Feed the Animal has an extensive but easy read on: Iron, Food Enrichment and the Theory of Everything

https://freetheanima...everything.html

Everything you ever wanted to know about how iron fortification of food has changed the health of the world.  

Did iron fortification contribute to the obesity epidemic?  

https://freetheanima...efinements.html

Is the gluten free fad simply a result of bowel intolerance to the highly reactive iron added to flour?

https://freetheanima...-liability.html

-------------------------

Bill Sardi's thesis on: A Unifying Theory of Aging explains the nuts and bolts on how iron accumulation accelerates aging quite well.  

http://www.longevine...of-aging-part1/

http://www.longevine...f-aging-part-2/

http://www.longevine...f-aging-part-3/

http://www.longevine...f-aging-part-4/

---------------------------

The Health-e-Iron site contains a small ocean of studies compiled which back-up the theory of Iron, Aging & Disease.  

http://www.healtheir...science-library

http://www.healtheiron.com/iron-cancer

http://www.healtheir.../iron-diabetes1

http://www.healtheiron.com/iron-brain

http://www.healtheir...duction-therapy

http://www.healtheir.../iron-infection

Hours of reading for inquiring minds...  Stay Young & Beautiful!  


Edited by synesthesia, 07 May 2017 - 11:32 PM.

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#2 Dorian Grey

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 09:46 PM

Sorry to bump this thread as there doesn’t seem to be much interest, but I’ve got a couple of important items I wanted to add.  

 

P.D. Mangan’s book “Dumping Iron” is the most concise and easy read I’ve found on ferrotoxic disease. It’s dirt cheap at $9.99 for paperback & $6.99 kindle.  You can actually read much of this book through the extensive “Look Inside” preview on Amazon.

 
 
The single most impressive paper I’ve seen on ferrotoxic disease is William R. Ware’s “The Risk of Too Much Iron: Normal Serum Ferritin Levels May Represent Significant Health Issues”
 
 

Ware covers the dangers of even mild iron elevations (often within normal range) better than any other source I’ve found, all in less than a 10 minute read.  


Hypertension, Heart Disease, Stroke, Cardiomyopathy, Insulin Resistance, Diabetes & Metabolic Syndrome, Fatty Liver Disease, & CANCER apparently all have significant correlations with age related iron accumulation that is still within normal ranges.  


My God, this reads like an encyclopedia of the most common and difficult to treat chronic diseases of the modern age.  Imagine the possibilities for health & longevity if we could substantially reduce our chances of developing these conditions associated with ferrotoxic disease?  

 

Does correlation = causation?  Ware points out that studies involving iron reduction show reduced levels of disease and appear to confirm correlation IS associated with causation when it comes to ferrotoxic disease.  This is particularly interesting when discovered by accident, as when patients involved in a study on iron reduction for vascular disease started showing substantially lower levels of cancer than the high iron controls did.

 

https://academic.oup...0/14/976/920610

 

Perhaps the best thing about this angle on health & longevity is that it is fairly easy to integrate into a normal lifestyle. Certainly easier than extreme calorie restriction, daily/life-long strenuous exercise or a spartan (vegetarian) diet.


Get thee to a blood bank & donate only whole blood (the iron is in the red cells).  Look into supplements associated with iron homeostasis like Quercetin, Curcumin & IP6.

 

Keep ferritin out of triple digits & maintain iron homeostasis... The life you save (or extend) may be your own!  

 

 

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Edited by Dorian Grey, 08 January 2018 - 10:29 PM.

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#3 Ovidus

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Posted 05 April 2019 - 08:08 PM

Good Sir,

 

Could eating fava beans help in getting rid of excess iron?

https://ghr.nlm.nih....nase-deficiency

 

"Hemolytic anemia can also occur after eating fava beans or inhaling pollen from fava plants (a reaction called favism).



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#4 Dorian Grey

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Posted 05 April 2019 - 09:05 PM

Hi Ovidus, & thanks for visiting my little iron rant.  

 

I believe the body recycles almost all the iron from spent/lysed red blood cells, though it's possible widespread hemolysis might result in some iron being excreted in bile.  

 

This would certainly be doing things the hard way though, and would likely be pretty slow going.  

 

You can lose more iron in 30 minutes or so down at the blood bank than you will by any other means.  If you can't donate blood, a hematologist can prescribe "therapeutic phlebotomy", which will accomplish the same thing.  Getting a referral to a hematologist can be difficult, but if ANY of your iron labs (ferritin, iron saturation aka TSAT / transferrin saturation) are out of range, this should justify a referral to hematology.  

 

If a bloodletting simply isn't going to happen for you, nature's iron chelators: Quercetin, Curcumin & IP6 (inositol hexaphosphate, aka phytic acid) would probably be the next best option.  Drinking black or green tea, or coffee with meals will also inhibit absorption of dietary iron, particularly the non-heme variety found in iron fortified foods.  

 

Avoid breakfast cereals like the plague, as these are highly fortified with iron.  Vitamin-C, if taken with meals and/or acidic foods also increase absorption of dietary iron.  I take Vitamin-C, but only on an empty stomach.  

 

Hope you find an alternate method to lower iron than fava induced hemolysis.  


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#5 pamojja

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Posted 05 April 2019 - 09:16 PM

Dorian, what would you do if there are many signs of anemia (looks hemolytic to me, my doc as usual is unconcerned and takes a wait and see approach), and sudden iron overload? Couldn't the iron overload come from the increased destruction of red blood cells? In which case blood-letting would be contraindicated.



#6 Dorian Grey

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Posted 06 April 2019 - 05:08 AM

Hemolytic anemia should raise unconjugated/indirect bilirubin (see graphic at bottom of this page): 

 

http://chemistry.gra... Metabolism.htm

 

Even in a lysed cell, I believe the iron should remain bound to hemoglobin till it is processed and recycled in the liver, but then I really don't know.  

 

Vitamin-E is supposed to help extend the life of red cells & help keep them intact: 

 

https://www.peacehea...s/id/hn-2931005

 

 I've also seen something about phospholipids helping with this too.  

 

An isolated spike in iron may not be too alarming, but this isn't the sort of thing I'd want to see over a number of labs over time.  If you are anemic, bloodletting would indeed be contraindicated, but you might experiment with the chelators to see if iron could be lowered without substantially effecting anemia.  I believe IP6 is the most potent of the chelators (mentioned above). 

 

Besides iron, folate & Vitamin B-12 are also required to generate new red cells, so I'd want to be sure I had no deficiencies there.  

 

A combination of anemia and high iron wold be especially problematic.  I believe this occurs in some with anemia of inflammation (aka anemia of chronic disease).  Here's a paper that presents an interesting theory about ferritin spikes.  

 

https://pubs.rsc.org...4/mt/c3mt00347g

 

The ferritin comes from cell turnover?  This might support your hemolysis theory, but liver cells contain the highest levels of iron and ferritin.  As the liver recycles spent/lysed heme from hemoglobin, perhaps a hemolysis problem could stress the liver and increase liver cell turnover, which would cause blood ferritin to spike?  

 

I'm not really well read in this area, but it is fascinating when you start getting deep in the weeds.  


Edited by Dorian Grey, 06 April 2019 - 05:13 AM.

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#7 pamojja

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Posted 06 April 2019 - 10:11 AM

Hemolytic anemia should raise unconjugated/indirect bilirubin (see graphic at bottom of this page):

 

Damn it, every-time I think its most likely one kind of anemia. I'm pointed to reasons why it isn't. No high bilirubin with me.

 

I get plenty of vitamin E, phopholipids, folate and cobalamin from supplementation and a long time. The later 2 since years above detection of my lab.

 

 

The ferritin comes from cell turnover?

Actually ferritin is the only one I'm unconcerned. About 79 mg/dl in average the last 10 years, and with the latest test. Never elevated.

 

Additional to low Transferrin, high Transferrin Saturation and low Total Iron Binding Capacity - all for the first time together outside of normal range, while before only some - I tested whole blood Iron (which measures plasma and RBC iron together) 3 times the last 7 years. It's gradually increasing and the last 2 times above normal. Serum Iron has been in average 97, and only once above normal 3 years ago.

 

My CBC is also the worst so far. Shortly explained, in that only Basophils%, MCHC and WBC are within normal (actually the later gradually improved from consistently too high). Neutrophils too high and Lymphocytes too low. All others off in the direction of anemia. Reticulocytes have been above normal too, though slightly improving.

 

Interestingly beside iron, also whole blood potassium, zinc, copper and lithium are all above normal, while in serum they're normal. However for the first time the ratio between zn:cu has normalized (before always relatively much too high cu). It seems many metals are accumulating in my few red blood cells only.

 

The only other stark abnormality is sky high above normal alkaline phosphatase, otherwise always been lingering at low end of normal. Liver and kidney normal. I do have periodically high inflammation (CRP and/or ESR), and consistent with a hemolytic anemia, my HbA1c is very low, despite pre-diabetic glucose and insulin resistance (insulin and c-peptide).

 

Maybe someone can make anything out of this mess. Medical history in this post.


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#8 Confused1

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Posted 06 April 2019 - 11:38 AM

From what I've read, there appears to be little downside to whole blood donation and it's a good thing for society at large. I'm convinced enough to begin donating blood on a regular basis.
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#9 Dorian Grey

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Posted 06 April 2019 - 06:02 PM

From what I've read, there appears to be little downside to whole blood donation and it's a good thing for society at large. I'm convinced enough to begin donating blood on a regular basis.

 

Congratulations Confused1 on choosing the easiest way to dramatically lower your risk of man's top two killers (cancer & heart disease).  Blood donation can seem an unusual practice, but millions around the world donate every year.  Once you get past the first deposit down at the blood bank, the routine becomes much easier, & once you get ferritin down below 80, just two donations a year should be all it takes to keep you in the sweet spot (ferritin 40-60).

 

The key to a happy donation experience is to go in well hydrated, at least an hour (and preferably two) after a good meal.  Avoid morning donations, when you may be dehydrated, hungry and not up to speed for the day.  Afternoon donations are much easier, & you may want to take it easy for a few hours after donating, which is easier to do with afternoon donations.  Digestion requires a substantial shift of blood to the digestive organs, so avoid donating after an all you can eat buffet, & likewise, it's best not to plan a major feast the same day after donating either. 

 

The needle they use for blood donation is fairly large, & it's best not to watch as you get the jab, at least for the first time.  Getting woozy or fainting is the only real possibly unpleasant experience, & if this is going to happen, it usually occurs if you watch the needle insertion.  They typically lay a piece of gauze over the needle directly after insertion so you don't see the insertion site during the rest of the donation.  

 

Donate only "Whole Blood" and not plasma or platelets.  The iron is in the red cells!  

 

There are a lot of youtube videos on "blood donation" if you want to familiarize yourself with the process before you go in.  I've done over 50 donations over the last 30 years, with lots of nifty T-Shirts & at 63 years of age, remarkably good health.  

 

Get thee to a blood bank!  The life you save may be your own!  



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#10 Dorian Grey

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Posted 06 April 2019 - 06:27 PM

Damn it, every-time I think its most likely one kind of anemia. I'm pointed to reasons why it isn't. No high bilirubin with me.

 

I get plenty of vitamin E, phopholipids, folate and cobalamin from supplementation and a long time. The later 2 since years above detection of my lab.

 

Actually ferritin is the only one I'm unconcerned. About 79 mg/dl in average the last 10 years, and with the latest test. Never elevated.

 

Additional to low Transferrin, high Transferrin Saturation and low Total Iron Binding Capacity - all for the first time together outside of normal range, while before only some - I tested whole blood Iron (which measures plasma and RBC iron together) 3 times the last 7 years. It's gradually increasing and the last 2 times above normal. Serum Iron has been in average 97, and only once above normal 3 years ago.

 

My CBC is also the worst so far. Shortly explained, in that only Basophils%, MCHC and WBC are within normal (actually the later gradually improved from consistently too high). Neutrophils too high and Lymphocytes too low. All others off in the direction of anemia. Reticulocytes have been above normal too, though slightly improving.

 

Interestingly beside iron, also whole blood potassium, zinc, copper and lithium are all above normal, while in serum they're normal. However for the first time the ratio between zn:cu has normalized (before always relatively much too high cu). It seems many metals are accumulating in my few red blood cells only.

 

The only other stark abnormality is sky high above normal alkaline phosphatase, otherwise always been lingering at low end of normal. Liver and kidney normal. I do have periodically high inflammation (CRP and/or ESR), and consistent with a hemolytic anemia, my HbA1c is very low, despite pre-diabetic glucose and insulin resistance (insulin and c-peptide).

 

Maybe someone can make anything out of this mess. Medical history in this post.

 

With CRP and/or ESR chronically elevated, the "anemia of inflammation" (commonly known as anemia of chronic disease) may be in play.  The body knows iron can contribute to inflammation (& infection), so when inflammation is high (or infection is present), the body raises its master iron anti-transport hormone "hepcidin".  Hepcidin not only shuts down absorption of dietary iron, but also puts stored iron in "lock-down" mode.  This is supposed to last only until inflammation subsides or any infection has passed, but with chronic inflammation (or infection), a long term hepcidin elevation results in anemia. 

 

Anemia of inflammation can be very difficult to resolve, but perhaps lowering serum iron through chelation (quercetin, curcumin, IP6) might lower inflammation, & help lower hepcidin, which will allow the body to shuttle iron around where it is needed (to produce red cells!).  You might also want to look at possible low grade infections (like gingivitis) or gut dysbiosis (gram negative overgrowth) resulting in elevated lipopolysaccharides (endotoxin) which might contribute to chronic hepcidin elevation and anemia.  Dental root canals have also been associated with chronic low grade infection activity, & I've read reports health has improved once these are removed.  If you have one or more of these, this might be yet another angle to explore.  


Edited by Dorian Grey, 06 April 2019 - 06:35 PM.

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#11 Confused1

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Posted 07 April 2019 - 01:16 PM

Thanks Dorian. I've actually donated blood once before, so it's not unfamiliar to me. I've never had my iron levels tested; is that something I should do or is it possible to just rely on blood donation to accomplish correct levels? I'm a 55 year old male in reasonably good health (I could stand to lose twenty pounds or so). Are you familiar with Paul Jaminet and his Perfect Health Diet? I've recently begun following something similar, although I take a ton more supplements that he recommends. I've been thinking of posting my "stack" on the Regimen thread but it doesn't seem to get a lot of activity. I'm not a scientist but I'm not an idiot, lol, (IQ 148) so, with research, I think I could understand constructive criticism.

#12 Dorian Grey

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Posted 07 April 2019 - 04:15 PM

If you're going to be donating whole blood regularly, an iron lab isn't essential, but ferritin is all you need and it's one of the cheapest labs there is.

 

https://www.lifeexte...itin-Blood-Test

 

At $21 retail, the wholesale price your insurance would pay would probably be less than $10 so your doc really shouldn't mind ordering this on request.  If he/she asks why you want this, you could say you are considering becoming a blood donor and want to insure you have enough iron on board to do this safely.  Some doc's get dinged by their insurance masters for ordering "non-essential" / frivolous labs, but becoming a blood donor should be a valid rationale.  

 

Most males who are not raised vegan/vegetarian start accumulating iron in their 20s and ferritin typically crosses the 100 mark sometime in their 30s.  At this point, the bodies iron restriction hormone hepcidin starts resisting absorption of dietary iron, but in a country that fortifies food with iron or a diet that regularly includes red meat, some iron still gets through, and by age 50 the typical male will have ferritin of 150 or more.  Some genetic variables, like a single gene hemochromatosis carrier (10% of caucasions have this) will absorb more iron and wind up with ferritin of 200+ in their 50s.  

 

Knowing where you stand when you decide to de-iron can provide motivation and sense of accomplishment when you get hazardous levels down towards the sweet spot below 80.  It can also help you decide how aggressively you want to donate.  Blood banks will take you every 2 months, & if my ferritin was over 200 I would want to donate aggressively for the first year.  If your ferritin starting point is 100-150, a more relaxed schedule (every 3-4 months) might be easier for you.  

 

Knowing your starting point can also show how great your risk of disease might have been if you failed to recognize the potential of ferrotoxic disease in your life.  The links in my first two posts in this thread provide many clues as to "what might have been" if you simply went on your merry way.  P.D. Mangan's book "Dumping Iron" is a great resource for this, and a powerful motivator.  At $9.99 kindle on amazon ($13.84 paperback), you'll soon realize how vital managing iron homeostasis can be.  If you sign into amazon you can read some of the book for free from their "Look Inside" feature.  

 

I'm not familiar with Paul Jaminet's work, but I'll give it a look. Always interesting to get opinions on your stack, but different members seem to have widely differing priorities.  I do my own research, which includes pondering the opinions of others here, but try to keep my own stack limited to around a dozen supps with well documented benefit and valid rationales for my own lifestyle and age.  More isn't always better.  


Edited by Dorian Grey, 07 April 2019 - 04:34 PM.


#13 pamojja

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Posted 07 April 2019 - 07:13 PM

Thanks for your suggestions.

 

With CRP and/or ESR chronically elevated, the "anemia of inflammation" (commonly known as anemia of chronic disease) may be in play.  The body knows iron can contribute to inflammation (& infection), so when inflammation is high (or infection is present), the body raises its master iron anti-transport hormone "hepcidin".

 

That's in my case with so many chronic conditions of course the first one would think about. However, my inflammation is periodical only. For example, CRP had been above normal on 2 occasion the last 10 years (one of it with a severe chronic bronchitis), ESR 6 times above, compared to 12 times normal.

 

This short description seems rather to exclude it:

 

 

https://www.merckman...chronic-disease

 

It is characterized by a microcytic or normocytic anemia and low reticulocyte count.

However, my MCV and reticulocytes are higher than normal. Needless to say, I have been taken everything I get my hands on to lower inflammation the last 10 years. And got my only root canal extracted 1 1/2 years ago.



#14 Dorian Grey

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Posted 07 April 2019 - 09:40 PM

Sorry I miscued on your inflammatory markers pamojja.  I assumed as both CRP & ESR were elevated more than once over time, they may have historically averaged marginal (high/normal).  I know with ferritin, the upper limit of the normal ranges are set quite high by most labs @ 200+ for females and 300-350+ for males; which is dramatically higher than the "optimal" level of less than 100 (40-60) for both genders.  You're also right about anemia of inflammation typically being microcytic.  Back to the drawing board!  

 

Speaking of the "Normal Range" for ferritin...  Normal has been changed dramatically higher over the last few decades.  A look at this paper: 

 

https://pdfs.semanti...0765cd8deb8.pdf

 

SERUM FERRITIN LEVELS IN APPARENTLY HEALTHY SUBJECTS

 

shows that back in the 1980's average ferritin for males was 83.82 +/- 7.40, with the upper limit of the normal range apparently set at 190.  Interestingly, iron fortification of food, which initially began back in the 1940's was sharply increased (around 50% higher) in the mid 1970's.  Let's fast forward a few decades and see what's considered normal now days.  The World Health Organization thinks more globally than locally and much of Europe still does not fortify their food with iron (they also live longer/healthier lives!).  The WHO opinion on normal ferritin is here:

 

https://www.who.int/...um_ferritin.pdf

 

OK, "Severe Risk of Iron Overload" in adults: anything over 200 for males, and a safe upper limit for females set at 150.  For a legitimate look at where the Americans might put the danger threshold, we'll turn to the All American Mayo Clinic.  

 

https://www.mayoclin...ut/pac-20384928

 

Their normal range for blood ferritin is now set at 20 - 500 for males (YIKES!) and 20 - 200 for females.  Now let's take another look at William R. Ware’s “The Risk of Too Much Iron"

 

https://www.isom.ca/...Issues-28.4.pdf

 

Scroll down to page 3 (page 151 of the journal) and look for: "Association and Thresholds of Ferritin Levels and the Risk of Various Diseases" in the right column.  The data presented speaks for itself, but the general consensus indicates that when it comes to ferritin & health, less is more, and the upper limit for the "optimal" range for ferritin is probably closer to 100 than Mayo Clinic's 500.  

 

Stay Healthy My Friends!  

 


Edited by Dorian Grey, 07 April 2019 - 10:05 PM.


#15 Debaser

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Posted 01 September 2019 - 08:57 PM

Could this be one of the (many) reasons why beans, wholegrains, nuts and legumes are so strongly associated with longer lives and less cardiovascular disease?

Obviously the fibre plays a role as well in stopping glucose spiking and lowering blood pressure, as well as the beneficial effects on the microbiome, but I wonder if the phytic acid (which binds to iron) will be reducing the amount of iron absorbed by anyone who regularly eats these foods. A diet rich in beans could be almost as good as regularly donating blood.

 

List of foods that contain phytic acid:

  • Brazil nuts
  • Sesame seeds (and tahini)
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Almonds
  • Pinto bean, butter bean (lima), and other beans
  • Peanut
  • Chia seeds
  • Hazelnut
  • Walnut
  • Wholegrain oats/wheat/brown rice
  • Chickpeas and lentils


#16 Dorian Grey

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Posted 02 September 2019 - 05:29 AM

Phytic acid has been branded an "antinutrient" as it does bind dietary iron, as well as other minerals.  While eating phytic acid with every meal can cause deficiencies, as long as part of the diet is free of phytic acid, the level of trace and other minerals usually will be adequate.  

 

Raymond Pearl in the early 20th century suggested that the primary determinant of how long species live is influenced by the relative speed of their resting metabolism. That is, metabolic rate is thought to be inversely proportional to maximum lifespan, which means that species with a high metabolic rate will die young while those that have a slower metabolic rate live longer.

 

The exception to this rule is found in birds.  High body temperature, fast pulse, high energy expenditure & high metabolism, yet many of them, particularly seed eating birds can live a remarkably long time (half a century+ in captivity).  Does their dietary phytic acid help them avoid ferrotoxic disease?  

 

Tannins in red wine & polyphenols in tea (and superfoods) also bind dietary iron and have been associated with longevity.  Add phytates into the mix and you'll have a remarkable longevity stack in my humble opinion.  Just make sure part of your daily diet is phytate/tannin/polyphenol free to avoid deficiencies.  More isn't always better!  


Edited by Dorian Grey, 02 September 2019 - 05:32 AM.


#17 mothballs

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Posted 26 September 2019 - 02:25 AM

Mr. Grey, love the material you've amassed here on ferrotoxicity.  I recently discovered that I am an HFE compound heterozygote on H63D/C282Y with blood iron 250ug/dL, ferritin 450 ng/ML; and transferrin saturation 92%.  I am 31.  These results precipitated a referral from my cardiologist to a hematologist for proper diagnosis, who I have been impatiently waiting to see for a month now, but the appointment is finally tomorrow.  I am giddy as a schoolgirl to start getting some of this nasty iron drained out of me on the regular.  In the meantime I have been having a blast reading up on how much more likely I am than the average human to drop dead at any moment from all causes.

 

I've been getting dragged through the gutter in the past few years with onset and steady progression of various low-grade symptoms of unknown etiology - weight gain, arthritis, fatigue, hives, tinnitus, advancing keratosis pilaris, premature graying hair, extreme restless sleep, heart palpitations and angina.  Between poor sleep, fatigue and overall body ache, I tend to feel like half a person most of the time these days.  Who knows if any of this is related to blood iron - as I understand it almost anything can be related to it since it so potently induces inflammation in all body tissues - but I will very interested to see if and to what extent any of my myriad issues resolve themselves as I start my phlebotomy journey.  I will be trying to document the character and severity of my issues as objectively as I can before I start my phlebs, with photos, measurements, etc where applicable, and of course I'll have my 'before' bloodwork to reference, so hopefully one day I can report back and say with some measure of confidence that my X, Y, or Z were cured in whole or in part by getting my ferritin under control.

 

In early summer I had done the dna chipset with ancestry and gotten back the hemochromatosis warning, but I hadn't thought anything of it or associated it with my intermittent chest pains and palpitations which I have been having for going on 9 months now, not until I noticed that the pains were regularly abating/disappearing for about a week each time after getting a diagnostic blood draw.  At which point I finally put the two and the two together and request the iron test from my doc. 

 

While waiting for my hemotologist appointment I had wanted to jump the gun and start donating blood the old fashioned way, but I was turned down because I had previously presented to my cardiologist with chest pains, which disqualified me from donation.  Amusing that they want my blood (I am O-), and I want to give them my blood, and by accounts it seems like my cardiac symptoms might in fact be largely ameliorated by giving them my blood, but still they cannot take it because a cardiac symptom is a cardiac symptom in their rulebook and is disqualifying.

 

It's actually a shame that dropping a pint off at the blood bank seems that it would be unequivocally healthful for almost everyone one, and yet if you run afoul of any of their rules and regulations for donating, you become blacklisted - and typically lose your only legal, safe means of divesting yourself of your blood, short of obtaining a prescription for phlebotomy.  I wonder what net cost to society is associated with these blacklistees - people who want to donate blood but are disallowed - in terms of their enhanced risk of modern diseases on account of elevated ferritin.

 



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#18 Dorian Grey

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Posted 26 September 2019 - 05:02 AM

Hi mothballs, & thanks for the kind words.  I'm a bit of a zealot with my ferrotoxic fetish, but I really believe it has saved my skin.  I've led a dreadful bohemian/bachelor lifestyle of fast food, alcohol & tobacco, but at age 63 have always enjoyed remarkably good health.  I was quite the party hamster when I first started donating in my early 30s and was astonished at how good I felt after donating. 

 

Smokers tend to have a high hematocrit (thick/viscous) blood, & daily drinkers invariably develop fatty liver which is a bad combination.  It was probably just the reduction in blood viscosity that caused such a dramatic improvement, but alcohol does increase absorption of dietary iron, and tobacco smoke particulate is also high in iron which may be responsible for the bulk of the damaging effects to the lungs.  I switched from cigarettes to pipe 20 years ago, but can still hike the 105 steps up and over the San Diego Convention Center without getting winded.  

 

It is crazy the blood bank won't let you donate, but they don't have any doctor on site, so anything "cardiac" spooks them.  Perhaps once you get de-ironed, your symptoms will improved and you'll get cardiac clearance from your doc to show them.  

 

You are VERY LUCKY to have discovered this at age 31 & ferritin 450.  Hemochromatisis is one of the most commonly misdiagnosed serious conditions in healthcare, & once ferritin crosses the 1000 mark, there is frequently lasting damage.  I'm betting not only will you have a full recovery, but you'll probably see significant improvement after your first few phlebotomies.  Transferrin is what is supposed to keep free/labile iron (which is toxic) in check.  When transferrin saturation is high (over 50%), free iron is high and oxidative stress runs rampant.  Your first few phlebotimies should pull this (TSAT) down dramatically, & hopefully reduce your symptoms fairly swiftly.  

 

You've got a ton of iron stored in your liver & spleen which will take some time to pull out, but just getting transferrin saturation down early on should really help.  Phlebotomies are fatiguing, as you'll be a bit anemic for a few days, but you can help rebuild red blood cells swiftly with adequate folate & Vitamin B-12.  You might wish to get your B-12 levels checked or ask your hematologist about supplementing. Sub-lingual "B-12 Dots" are absorbed better than standard supps.  Low doses (500mcg) are better than mega-dosing, and a 30 day run should charge up your B-12 battery for the long haul (don't take B-12 continuously / forever!).  Vitamin B-Complex with 400mcg folic acid, or better yet a methylfolate (5 MTHF) supp will help you bounce back from your phlebotomies a lot more quickly.  

 

Remember to go in for your phlebotomies well hydrated, a couple of hours after a decent meal (afternoons are best).  The needle they use is quite large...  It has to be, or it would take half an hour to drain off a pint.  Don't watch right as you get the jab the first few times.  If you're going to get woozy, it will be from watching the needle insertion, & an unfortunate phlebotomy experience (fainting) early on would be well, unfortunate.  I've donated over 6 gallons (more than 50 times) over the years, & never had a bad experience.  I usually feel a bit wiped-out the evening after donating, but wake up bright as a button the next day.  

 

I'm looking forward to hearing how swiftly your symptoms start to improve.  I'm betting you'll be feeling better sooner than you think!  







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