How much iron is too much ? I've had my DNA analyzed and it turns out I might have hemochromatosis. I still need to see a doc. to confirm. I'm considering the VeganMV, but I tend to eat about 2 1/2 cups of spinach and 2 1/2 cups of chopped broccoli per day. I weigh 142 lbs and am male. Could it be wise to refrain from taking a multivitamin that contains iron?

Answer:

The immediate answer (until your doctor confirms this potential iron overload condition), is do not use any supplements that contain iron, but not because of diet, because of the possibility of hemochromatosis. In fact, if it turns out to be true, you may have to significantly alter your diet. You are correct to see a doctor because “DNA testing” may lead you to a false positive. Your doctor may start by asking about symptoms and family history, which may or may not lead to next steps of giving you specific blood tests and possibly additional tests.

The recommended daily intake of iron for non-vegetarian adult males is 8 mg/day. A higher amount is recommended for vegetarians and vegans - 14.4 mg/day due to the form of iron in plants that is less bioavailable.