***I would just like to say I noticed that I have almost 300 people who have subscribed to this tiny blog. Really?? Wow! Are you guys actually reading this or am I junk mail? I hope I’m not junk mail. I certainly don’t feel like junk mail…I digress.***

Really, iron. I just say “eye ron” in my head because Tim and I have this thing where that’s what we say when someone has to iron a piece of clothing. As in: “Will you please ‘eye ron’ my shirt?”

And for the record, it’s usually me asking because A: I am the worst ironer ever (like, ever. My shirts usually have more permanent-until-it’s-washed wrinkles after I iron. It usually looked better beforehand with the soft wrinkles I was trying to remove) and B: Tim has been ironing his clothes since kindergarten (for serious) and he has 13 years on me, so he’s obviously the expert.

Who messes with perfection? Amiright?!

Anyhow, that’s a REALLY long winded way of explaining why the title is eye-ron when I really mean iron.

And by iron I really wanted to talk about iron the mineral, not iron the cloth smoothing device I’ve yet to master.


Iron. The mineral. The thing we need so we aren’t anemic. The thing Kellan is apparently low on.

He was checked at his nine month appointment and was 9.9. He should be at 10.5-12. They told us to do iron drops (poly-vi-sol). Those made him ridiculously constipated. They told us to do every other day. Kellan got sick multiple times (stomach bugs and herpangina and who knows what else. I’ve lost track) and would go a week at a time without eating (save breast feeding), on multiple occasions.

The kid refuses meat of all varieties. We finally got him to try shredded BBQ chicken that I made in the crockpot the other day. It was a huge success, even though he only ate a tiny bit.

We give him green smoothies (spinach). We try to pair citrus foods with iron rich foods to help iron absorption. And we limit yogurt to one meal a day, since calcium hinders iron absorption.

(You’re saying “eye-ron” in your head now, aren’t you? It’s catchy, no?)

I’m telling you all of this because when we went back for his 12 month appointment, his levels dropped to 9.0.

Now? Daily iron supplements and as much iron rich foods as possible. He will be checked again at his 15 month appointment and if they haven’t improved or if they drop again? Blood draws to check for other potential issues.

I’m pretty sure it’s just low iron due to him not getting enough in his diet. However, I’m also slightly perplexed. In my (admittedly limited) research, it seems like many breastfed babies have this low iron issue in the 6-12 month range – after their stored iron is depleted.

One reason I found for low iron levels in young babies was to protect their gut from E. coli, since the iron in breast milk is absorbed at a rate around 49% (though it isn’t much iron) and the iron is only available to baby via and not bacteria like E. coli…here is the info, plus more, about all that.

Anyway, Tim and I are both struggling with this. The low iron. The supplements. The reason his iron is low in the first place. Part of our brain feels like there IS a reason, biologically, this is happening. Maybe not related to protecting him from intestinal bacteria but something. Why else would so many breastfed babies turn up with low iron? I mean, I read a theory about how we used to sleep on the ground and get iron absorbed brought the dirt we ate as babies way back in the day because everyone knows babies put everything in their mouths.

But what about the places with snow on the ground ten months out of the year? What dirt were those babies eating? I’m just saying.

Anyhow, theories? Observations? Experience with this? We *are* giving Kellan the iron supplement but we are also struggling with the *why* — it just seems like there is a reason…that this low iron isn’t necessarily a bad thing but instead a protective measure (or something) and will correct itself in due time, as nature intended.

I could be way off, here, which is why I’m asking you guys if you have had similar issues with your kids or have some kind of insight as to WHY.


8 Responses to “eye-ron”

  1. 1 Shannon February 28, 2013 at 9:47 am

    Do you guys have a nutritionist? My chiropractor is a very well informed nutritionist. His wife had stage 4 cancer, they refused chemo and did holistic measures only. She has been in remission for years now. Anyways, my point is, he is a wealth of knowledge for situations like this. He already has me on this, that and the other vitamins for baby making. Of course all organic specific and so forth. (I can currently enlighten you on Iodine and Fish Oil) Perhaps you need to find someone like that for your family that you can trust who can give you better answers than a doctor can. Lets face it, not saying doctors are dumb, but I think you are right in wanting to educate yourself.
    I hope that made sense:)

  2. 2 Amanda February 28, 2013 at 11:47 am

    Isn’t iron used in brain development? Also you desperately need it to help with blood clotting issues. That way when you cut yourself you stop bleeding. Also it is the one mineral that you’re body will literally strip completely from an expectant mother to nourish the unborn baby. That is why so many women are iron deficient during pregnancy. Are there any other issues you see that make you worry that IEEE is something more

  3. 3 jamesramirez February 28, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    I don’t remember when I started reading your post but when I do it is a joy. I am the father of 4 children. Their ages range from 11-18 so it has been a while since they were younger.
    They were all breast feed babies. As the children kept coming, the baby care standards lowered. The youngest probably ate as much dirt as food growing up. šŸ™‚
    I’ve heard it said that cooking with cast iron pans adds iron to the food. I don’t know if this is true mostly because we’ve always cooked with cast iron pots and pans. I even use them to heat things up in the oven. I’ve used them for years and they are non-stick now.
    This may help in the future.
    O! Don’t by new if you can help it. There is always some unsatisfied person with a pan they don’t want. I built my collection this way.
    God Bless you and your family.

    • 4 Jessica February 28, 2013 at 1:30 pm

      Thank you for the tip with cast iron! You are right and I forgot about that!! Also? Good to know you’re holding down the male contingent. Tim will be pleased šŸ˜‰

      • 5 jamesramirez February 28, 2013 at 2:11 pm

        Thank you. I look for Guys that write on things that interest me but I have found few. I always fell strange reading things from ladies that neither I nor my wife know. I have come to settle that it is just like reading a newsletter. That is good enough for me, most of the time. Lastly you child is gorgeous and I’ll end with that. God Bless

  4. 6 Yum Yucky February 28, 2013 at 3:40 pm

    Not so much an iron tip, but just some encouragement! I remember when my toddler-spawn wasn’t eating for some unknown reason (he’s 8yo now). It was so bad that the doc wanted to put him on some type of medicine that would make him hungry. It was a scary times but he came through it. Kids are definitely resilient and they grow out of a lot of quirky stuff. Hang in there, momma!

  5. 8 PJ February 28, 2013 at 7:26 pm

    I don’t have kids, so I can’t comment on that aspect of it; but Amanda is right – it’s vital in clotting.
    In order to donate blood you have to have iron levels of at least 12.5 and that is honestly the hardest part of the donation process for me. I usually come in right at or just over (at like 12.6). So a few days before my donation appointment I make sure to eat spinach, meat, and beans. I’m not sure if you’ve tried beans (or if you can at Kellans age) but they also have a lot of iron.

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