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Iron supplements help only certain women who are not anemic

Among women who are not anemic, only those with tissue-iron deficiencies can benefit from taking iron supplements, concludes a new study by Cornell University nutritionists.

"Supplementation makes no difference in exercise-training improvements in women with low iron storage who are not yet tissue-iron deficient or anemic," says Thomas Brownlie, the first author of the study and a Cornell doctoral candidate in nutritional sciences.

Women with low body iron, but who are not anemic, may not experience any improvements following training if their tissues are low in iron. Whereas women who have low iron storage in their liver only, and who are not anemic, appear to have no functional impairments.

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