Iron supplement increasing risks of glaucoma?
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13 months ago
flyingpig • 100
@flyingpig

I am temped to take iron supplements to improve my training performance for long distance running.

By being FitEyes member, now I learned that I should do some quick research before taking tablets.

I found couple of papers concluding that Iron/Calcium will increase the risk of glaucoma, for instance:

Wang SY, Singh K, Lin SC. The association between glaucoma prevalence and supplementation with the oxidants calcium and iron. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2012;53(2):725-731.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3317417/

So is that big NO? Looking forward to hearing for you guys.

nutrition • 638 views
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13 months ago
david 4.3k
@david_fe

I am temped to take iron supplements to improve my training performance for long distance running. I found couple of papers concluding that Iron/Calcium will increase the risk of glaucoma... So is that big NO? Looking forward to hearing for you guys.

You already answered your own question, mostly. But, yes, I can confirm its almost certainly a big NO. Not only is that conclusion supported by the glaucoma-specific studies, it's supported much more broadly by many other papers. The only exception would be if your blood test shows you have some iron-related deficiencies.

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Thank you, David, for double-checking.

Now that the idea of taking iron supplements can be out of my head, it is a sort of relief too!

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Have you considered using beets instead of iron supplements?

This thorough 2020 review, which included 80 clinical trials, found that consuming beetroot juice provided performance benefits for athletes.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7494956/

Furthermore, "red beetroot and its active compounds are promising alternatives for supplemental therapies in multiple diseases" according to https://doi.org/10.1002/ptr.6653

Another study found that beetroot consumption may prevent cognitive decline, and I can speculate that it may support eye health directly (although I don't have a paper to cite for that specifically).

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Thanks David. Yes, I am using Beet-IT before my key training sessions. There is news from NN Running team about they partnered up so I assume it would improve my running performance in long term. ( https://www.nnrunningteam.com/news/2018-05-01-you-cant-beet-it/ )

Another study found that beetroot consumption may prevent cognitive decline, and I can speculate that it may support eye health directly (although I don't have a paper to cite for that specifically).

That's why you are the expert in the community! If you check this video (https://youtu.be/LRtYRaMhN8g), the doctor mentioned there is a new/expensive eyedrop VYZULTA® uses nitric oxide pathway to reduce IOP, and using beets might be inexpensive replacement. I don't real understand the details but it sounds making sense to me. Beside using Beet-IT shots, I used to drink beetroot juice daily, but I stopped for a while due to the dirt smell, it's time to pick it again :)

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