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Can A Heavy Period Cause Iron Deficiency

Can A Heavy Period Cause Iron Deficiency

January 24, 2023

Do you find that you feel tired, weak, short of breath, and lightheaded with reduced concentration and focus during your monthly period cycle?1a,b,2a,c This could be due to blood loss and decreased iron stores in your red blood cells during this time.1d,2a Women with a heavier period and losing more blood than average could be at risk of developing iron deficiency anaemia (IDA).1d,2a,b

Low Iron & Heavy Periods

Due to the blood loss associated with menstruation, anaemia affects women more frequently than men.1e,3a Each month during menstruation blood loss, the iron within the red blood cells is also lost.2a,b.d You then risk developing iron deficiency anaemia if your monthly intake and absorption of iron are insufficient to make up for the iron you lose during your period.4c

Heavy menstrual flow increases the risk of iron deficiency anaemia in women.1d When the average menstrual flow exceeds 80 ml, it is deemed to be excessive menstrual bleeding.4a

Although it might be difficult to determine how much blood you lose during your period, the below symptoms could indicate excessive blood loss.5d

  • Expelling large blood clots2e,4b
  • Needing two forms of protection (using both pads and tampons at once)2e
  • Need a pad or tampon change every two hours or less5a
  • Excessive bleeding that disrupts your daily activities4a,b
  • Bleeding through your sheets or clothes despite wearing protection5c

Blood Loss & Iron Deficiency

Except for menstruation, numerous conditions can result in bleeding, and you might not even be aware of them.3b,8a

Blood loss during childbirth or a c-section can also contribute to the development of iron deficiency.3b,8a Other conditions such as intestinal polyps, duodenum/gastric ulcers, and erosive gastritis can all result in gastrointestinal bleeding.8a Blood loss can also result from endometriosis and uterine fibroids.5b Endometriosis and anaemia are closely related.4d

How To Curb Iron Deficiency?

Chela-fer® is a chelated iron supplement. It contains the chelated iron salt ferrous bisglycinate chelate.7a,b Chela-fer® with Ferrous Bisglycinate utilises organic amino acids as carriers for the iron molecules to improve absorption in the body. Chela-fer® also contains folic acid, a vitamin which helps to form red blood cells and assists the body in metabolising proteins.6a


  1. Fernandez-Jimenez C, Moreno G, Wright I, et al. Iron Deficiency in Menstruating Adult Women: Much More than Anemia. Women’s Health Reports 2020;1(1): Available from: [Accessed 16 January 2023].
  2. Women’s Health Specialists. Can heavy periods cause anemia? Available from: [Accessed 16 January 2023].
  3. Coad J, Conlon C. Iron deficiency in women: assessment, causes and consequences. Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care 2011;14(6):625-634.
  4. Herman MC, Mol BW, Bonger. Diagnosis of heavy menstrual bleeding. Women’s Health 2016;12(1):15-20.
  5. Centre for Disease Control (CDC). Bleeding disorders in women. Heavy Menstrual Bleeding. Available from: [Accessed 16 January 2023].
  6. CHELA-FER® Approved Patient information leaflet. PC3295/04 [Data on file].
  7. Brady DM, Copp S. Design for health. Science first. Ferrochel® Ferrous Bisglycinate Chelate. Available at: [Accessed 17 January 2023].
  8. National Institute of Health (NIH). Iron deficiency anaemia. Available from: [Accessed 17 January 2023].




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