How Long Does It Take For Iron Supplements To Work?

If you're taking iron supplements, you may be wondering, "How long will it take to see results?" The answer can vary, influenced by factors such as your initial iron levels, overall health, and even specific life stages like pregnancy.

This article delves into the science behind how quickly iron supplements can take effect, what signs indicate their efficacy, and important considerations for optimal absorption. 

How Long Do Iron Pills Take to Work?

Most people start to feel better within three weeks of taking iron supplements. However, it can take up to 12 weeks for some individuals to experience a noticeable increase in energy levels. In pregnancy, the time frame may vary and consultation with healthcare professionals is advised.

In theory iron supplements work by replenishing your body's iron stores, primarily in the form of ferritin, and by increasing haemoglobin levels in your blood. Haemoglobin is the key protein that allows red blood cells to transport oxygen. 

For those starting with particularly low iron levels, it may take up to six months to fully replenish iron stores. The varying timelines can be influenced by multiple factors, including initial iron levels, overall health, and specific life circumstances such as pregnancy.

How to Take Iron Supplements the Right Way

Taking iron supplements effectively is essential for optimising absorption and results. Traditional iron supplements are often recommended to be taken on an empty stomach to facilitate better absorption. However, they can be hard on the digestive system, leading some people to take them with food, which can reduce their efficacy.

In contrast, Nano Iron has specific dosage recommendations that take into account its pure form of absorption. If your healthcare provider has advised you to take 100mg of a regular iron supplement, this would equate to approximately 30-35ml of Nano Iron in terms of absorption. If you have been recommended to take 200mg of a traditional supplement, 35ml of Nano Iron twice a day on an empty stomach would be the approximate equivalent.

Nano Iron should be taken on an empty stomach and held in the mouth for a minute or two before swallowing.

Always consult a healthcare professional for tailored advice, especially if you're pregnant or have other medical conditions.

Raising Iron Levels: Pills vs Food

When it comes to raising your iron levels, understanding the different sources of iron is crucial. Your body absorbs up to 25% of the iron found in animal products like meat and fish, known as heme iron. In contrast, only about 2% to 20% of non-heme iron, found in plant-based foods like spinach or lentils, is absorbed. New in the world of supplements however is Nano Iron, which is a purified form of elemental iron particles the size of atoms, in purified water making it highly absorbable.

The term bioavailability refers to how much of the iron you ingest actually gets utilized by your body. Heme iron from meat is generally more bioavailable than non-heme iron from plant-based foods. Nano Iron sets itself apart due to its pure, elemental form and small size which increases its bioavailable.

Personal health conditions or medications can also affect how well your body absorbs iron, which is why you should always consult with a qualified health professional before use.


Signs Iron Supplements Are Working: What to Look For

After starting any iron supplement, you might be eager to know if it's actually making a difference. While blood tests are the most accurate way to measure iron levels, if you pay attention to how you are feeling and keep a diary you may notice improvements where before you might have struggled. This can be done with any food or supplement you chose to use. 

Signs Your Iron Pills Are Working

After initiating an iron supplement regimen, it's important to look for signs that your body is responding in a positive way.

Iron absorption is a nuanced process, involving interactions between the small intestine, bloodstream, and liver.  

Unlike conventional iron supplements that require breaking down in the stomach and gut, Nano Iron is composed of 99.99% pure (elemental) iron particles ranging in size between 0.5 and 7 nanometres (the size of single or small clusters of atoms), in purified (energised) water. 

FAQs About the Efficacy and Timing of Iron Supplements

How soon can I expect to feel better after starting iron supplements?
Generally, you may start to feel improvements within a week or two of starting iron supplements. However, the full resolution of an iron deficiency may take up to a few months and depends on many factors. You should consult a qualified health professional.
How do I know if my iron supplements are effective?
Signs that your iron supplements are working may include increased energy levels, less fatigue, improved concentration, and a healthier colour to your skin and gums. Blood tests measuring ferritin and haemoglobin levels provide a more conclusive method.
When does iron get into my bloodstream?
Iron is generally absorbed into your bloodstream within 2 to 4 hours after ingestion. This process may be influenced by various factors such as the presence of Vitamin C and the type of iron supplement used.
How do iron supplements work during pregnancy? During pregnancy, the need for iron increases. It generally takes between 2 to 4 weeks for iron supplements to show their effects in pregnant women. Consult your healthcare provider for appropriate guidance on type and dosage.
How long does it take to raise iron levels with supplements?
This will depend on many different factors and for this reason you should consult a qualified health professional.
What happens if I stop taking iron supplements?
If you stop taking iron supplements, your iron stores may gradually decline, potentially worsening any pre-existing conditions. Your ferritin and haemoglobin levels could begin to drop within a few weeks. Consult a qualified healthcare professional before making changes to your supplementation routine.
Are there differences in the speed of raising iron levels between pills and food?
Iron from food usually takes longer to impact your iron levels compared to supplements. Additionally, the bioavailability of iron from food varies, with heme iron from animal products generally being more readily absorbed than non-heme iron from plant-based foods.