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It's estimated that one in eight women experience iron deficiency after giving birth, up to 12 months after delivery. And the results can make life - let alone life parenting a new baby - very difficult. Symptoms of iron deficiency include feeling weak and tiring out more easily, feeling dizzy or cranky, headaches, shortness of breath, trouble concentrating, and a pale appearance.
Restoring iron is usually achieved with over-the-counter iron supplements, but for a good number of people they can cause digestive problems, such as stomach upset and constipation.
Fortunately, there are a number of herbs that can play a role in restoring your iron levels. Herbs such as alfalfa, dandelion root or leaf, burdock, and yellow dock may help bring levels of hemoglobin into normal range in mild cases of anemia. These herbs may be taken individually or in combination, and but may interact with medications including warfarin (Coumadin), lithium, and digoxin, among others.
Many midwives recommend a liquid plant-based supplement, such as Floradix's Iron+Herbs and Gaia Herbs Plant Force Liquid Iron, and these products make it easy for you to take key herbs in a highly-absorbed and concentrated form. They contain a number of iron-restoring herbs, such as nettle, yellow dock, quitch roots, fennel, anise, African mallow blossom and rosehips. They are an especially great alternative to regular over-the-counter iron supplements because they do not cause constipation.
This post is intended as an educational resource, not as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider for medical help regarding this issue.