How to Reduce Ferritin Levels

Ferritin is a protein in the cells of the body that stores iron. Doctors can take a blood sample and test your ferritin level to better understand how much iron your body is storing and to determine whether your ferritin level needs to be adjusted. A level that is too low points to an iron deficiency. If your ferritin level is too high, this could indicate liver disease, rheumatoid arthritis, hyperthyroidism or inflammatory diseases. If you have excess iron in your body, a condition known as hemochromatosis, you can take natural steps to reduce your ferritin level.

How to Reduce Ferritin Levels
How to Reduce Ferritin Levels (Alexander Raths/iStock/Getty Images)
Step 1:

Avoid supplements that contain iron, such as multivitamins. Also avoid taking extra Vitamin C, since it increases the body’s ability to absorb iron. Eating fruits and vegetables containing Vitamin C is safe in moderation. What should be avoided are supplements containing more Vitamin C than is naturally found in fruits and vegetables.

Avoid supplements containing more Vitamin C than is naturally found in fruits and vegetables.
Avoid supplements containing more Vitamin C than is naturally found in fruits and vegetables. (Thinkstock Images/Stockbyte/Getty Images)
Step 2:

Cook with glass or ceramic cookware. Iron from skillets and grills can get into your food while cooking. Once your ferritin levels are back to normal and monitored regularly, you can resume using iron cookware.

Iron from skillets and grills can get into your food while cooking.
Iron from skillets and grills can get into your food while cooking. (Warren Price/iStock/Getty Images)
Step 3:

Eat foods that inhibit the absorption of iron. These include walnuts, cocoa, tea, coffee, purple grapes, rice and foods that are high in fiber and calcium. Consuming such foods will prevent excess iron from remaining in your blood. Additionally, the herb milk thistle has been known to reduce excess iron.

Walnuts, cocoa and coffee inhibit the absorption of iron.
Walnuts, cocoa and coffee inhibit the absorption of iron. (Aukasz Simonowicz/iStock/Getty Images)
Step 4:

Stop eating foods that are rich in iron until your ferritin levels are within a normal range. Such foods include red meat, chicken, eggs, green leafy vegetables, legumes and nuts.

Avoid eating foods rich in iron such as red meat.
Avoid eating foods rich in iron such as red meat. (Fuse/Fuse/Getty Images)
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Tips & Warnings

  • Have your doctor monitor your ferritin level regularly. Levels can decrease for a short period of time and increase again later.
  • Do not consume alcohol while your ferritin levels are too high. Liver damage can occur when alcohol combines with excess iron.

References

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