How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Chris C. Your Own Question
Chris C.
Chris C., Nurse
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 1081
Experience:  Nurse with with 10+ yrs. in wellness care, geriatrics, hospice and acute care.
Type Your Health Question Here...
Chris C. is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I was recently diagnosed (by 2 lab tests) with iron deficiency

This answer was rated:

I was recently diagnosed (by 2 lab tests) with iron deficiency anemia, was tested for blood in stool--negative. Dr says it is NOT my diet and put me on Integra. But my question is, what is causing it?
I have chronic constipation and have recently found relief by taking Metamucil 3 times a day, colace with meals and a 1/2 dose of Miralax at night (all per dr orders). Can any of these products reduce the iron in my system?
Metamucil supposedly reduces cholesterol by binding it and it is eliminated in bowel movement...can it also take available iron with it?


What is your current Hemoglobin and Serum Iron levels?

Any other medical history?

Any recent infection or other illness?

Are you taking any other medications?

Do you feel any associated symptoms?

Since how long have you been suffering from?

Have you undergone any other investigations?

Antacids can prevent the release of stomach acid and reduce iron absorption. Any medication including over the counter remedies that cause low stomach acid can lower iron absorption.

Also, certain antibiotics and even some foods reduce the absorption of iron including: wheat, oats, soy and soy milk, green or black tea, chocolate, spinach, and carbonated soft drinks.

Medications especially those containing calcium (calcium citrate) and magnesium cause a great reduction in iron absorption.

Soluble fibers such as psyllium seed husks (Metamucil) also block iron (and other mineral) absorption.

There are some supplements that help increase absorption of iron such as vitamin C if taken in combination with a foods high in iron such as meat, fish, poultry, thyme, tumeric, lettuce, tofu, many greens including mustard and turnip greens, string beans, and shitake mushrooms.

Were you able to see my reply?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Sorry it has taken me so long to get back to you...sick with the flu.
Thank you for the general info you provided.

Answers to your questions as follows:

hemoglobin 11, iron total 22, saturation 5, ferritin 6, hemocrit, mcv, mch all slightly lower than reference range and rdw high at 19.2.

Had three stents placed in heart past year, high blood pressure, controlled by meds.

Medications: Lisinipril, Toprol, fish oil, Vit. C and all OTC constipation products listed before.

No illness or infection prior to blood work, I have felt no other troubling symptoms prior to blood work.

Diagnosed this month, just started Integra.


The Integra contains 2 types of iron complexes that greatly increase the absorption. This should raise the iron level significantly within 8-10 days. Integra also contains numerous other daily vitamins that will also be beneficial in treating the iron deficiency. If you follow the information I have already provided and take one capsule daily, between meals, or as prescribed by a physician of Integra this should resolve the iron issue.

Each capsule of Integra contains:

Ferrous Fumarate (anhydrous) 191.1 mg
Polysaccharide Iron Complex 135.9 mg (Equivalent to about 125 mg of elemental iron)
Vitamin C 210 mg
Folic Acid 1 mg
Thiamine Mononitrate (B1) 5 mg
Riboflavin (B2) 5 mg
Niacin (B3) 20 mg
d-Calcium Pantothenate (B5) 7 mg
Pyridoxine HCl (B6) 25 mg
Biotin (B7) 300 mcg
Cyanocobalamin (B12) 10 mcg
Chris C., Nurse
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 1081
Experience: Nurse with with 10+ yrs. in wellness care, geriatrics, hospice and acute care.
Chris C. and 4 other Health Specialists are ready to help you