Side effects of excess iron in a woman’s body

Iron is an essential mineral which is required for the human body. Iron in the human body occurs mainly in the red blood cells and this helps in carrying the oxygen to all the cells in the body of an individual. Iron is also required for the production of the energy source of the body ATP or adenosine triphosphate. The body of an individual stores the excess iron in the bone marrow, liver, muscles and spleen. It has been found that excess intake of iron supplements also lead to excess iron in the body of women. This leads to different side effects in a person. It is better therefore to be aware of the various side effects that can occur in a woman if she has excess iron in her body.

Risk liver cancer

Recent research has shown that excess iron in the body of a woman can lead to liver cancer or cirrhosis. The liver stores the extra iron in your body. But an excess of iron in your body puts pressure on your liver. This leads to irreversible liver scarring which is very harmful and paves the way for liver cancer in women. Liver cancer can also occur in women who suffer from a disease called hematochromatosis, a condition in which the iron from the foods that a person consumes is derived in much greater amounts. This leads to retaining more iron in the body.

Heart diseases

Excess iron in the body of women can lead to heart failure or arrhythmia. This is a condition which occurs in individuals who have excess iron in their body and this iron interferes with the electrical conductivity of the heart of a person. This results in heart failure. The function of the heart is to pump blood throughout the body. The excess iron interferes with the pumping of the heart and disrupts the blood circulation leading to heart failure in individuals. Swelling of legs and difficulty in breathing are the symptoms of heart failure.

Changes in the skin

Excess iron in the body of a woman may lead to changes in the skin quality and tone. When the excess iron in the body moves from the blood into the body tissues, it gets deposited in the skin cells. As a result of which, the skin becomes a little gray or bronze in color. A recent survey has shown that ninety percent of women who have excess iron have underwent this change of skin color. This hyper pigmentation in many women has also led to making their skin more sensitive to the harmful ultraviolet rays.


Excess iron in the body often happens when the person suffers from a disease called hemochromatosis, in which the body absorbs more iron from the food one consumes. This may lead to problems in the pancreas of an individual and it has been found that seventy five percent people affected with this problem have diabetes. Any individual with a family of these two diseases are more prone to develop them. This happens because the excess iron ends up in the pancreas and insulin production gets disturbed. This leads to rise in blood sugar levels and individuals become victims of diabetes.


The accumulation of the excess iron in the joints of women can lead to damaging of the tissues and making them victim of arthritis. This tissue damage leaves the bone uncovered and they rub against each other causing immense pain to the individuals. People with hemochromatosis are more prone to developing arthritis. The damage done by excess iron in the blood also prohibits the body from repairing the tissues. This leads to an increase of inflammation in the body of an individual.

Failure of the ovaries

Women should be very cautious about the iron levels in their body. High levels of iron in the blood are equally harmful as low levels. Low levels may lead to anemia in the individual. Clinical research has shown that excess iron in the blood of women can damage the ovaries. This is manifested in many women as irregular menstrual cycles and the loss of ovulation. In adolescent females, the puberty may also be delayed for the same reason. The amount of iron in such women needs to be reduced.

Helps in the growth of bacteria in the body

Iron carries the oxygen in our body and is therefore the main transporting agent of oxygen. As a result of which excess iron in the body leads to the growth of bacteria in excess amounts in the body of an individual. Bacteria needs oxygen and the excess iron supplies the bacteria with their much needed oxygen thus enabling them to grow fast. This is the most common reason why many individuals face chronic infections. It has been found recently that excess iron can lead to forming of even bad bacteria which can harm the body.

Nervous system diseases

Excess iron in the blood can also lead to the development of many neural diseases in women. Parkinson’s disease, ADHD, Alzheimer’s disease, behavioral abnormalities like anti-social behavior or violence is the result of excess iron in the blood of individuals. Stress, anger, fear, hostility are the negative emotions that an individual feels when she has excess iron in her blood.

Interferes with the medicines that one consumes for certain diseases

Too much iron in the body of a woman can cause problems with the medicines that she consumes for treating some other disease. Several medicines prescribed by the doctors may fail to affect your health due to the high levels of iron in the blood. This includes the medicines people take for reducing the high blood pressure, osteoporosis drugs and even diabetes medicines. It is therefore better to check with the doctor if an individual finds that even after the consumption of the medicine no changes have come over in her health. This will lead to the finding out of the truth of excess iron in the body of an individual.

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