Fluctuating hormones are often blamed for women who feel physically and mentally underperforming while on their period.
However, scientists now say that reduced levels of iron can disturb their mood and make them more irritable during their months.
A low nutrient content – rich in dark leafy vegetables – can make women moodier and less motivated, the researchers claim.
The Polish team added that iron deficiency could even be a "risk factor for mental disorders" – such as depression.
Women who suffer from iron deficiency are at risk for mental disorders and have shown signs of withdrawal, decreased motivation and sensationalism
Researchers from Nicolaus Copernicus University also say that iron waste can worsen their cognitive performance and endurance.
The iron deficiency that occurs due to blood loss slows the brain and the central nervous system of the body.
Iron deficiency (ID) is the most common deficiency of nutrients and affects more than two billion people worldwide.
According to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, an estimated 20 percent of women of childbearing age have iron deficiency anemia.
Researchers at Nicolaus Copernicus University examined 23 physically active women who were between 20 and 32 years old during their period.
All women had normal iron levels and no anemia, and their mental and physical performance was analyzed during that time.
The tests included the EEG scan [electroencephalogram], a form of brain scan to perform multiple measurements, including emotional reactivity.
The published in the journal Physiology & Behavior results were compared between women with iron deficiency and iron-sufficient women.
The researchers found out Slight iron deficiency can lead to withdrawal tendencies, reduced motivation and sensationalism.
Women were considered iron deficient if they had less than 12 micrograms of iron per liter of blood.
The study also aimed to assess whether iron deficiency caused anxiety, as shown in animal studies.
There was no sufficient association between iron deficiency and anxiety, but all four high anxiety participants were iron deficient.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF IRON-FRIENDLY ANEMIE?
Iron deficiency anemia is a common type of anemia – a condition in which blood does not have sufficient healthy red blood cells.
Without enough iron, your body can not produce enough substance in red blood cells that allows it to transport oxygen (hemoglobin). As a result, iron deficiency anemia can make you tired and short of breath.
Iron deficiency anemia may initially be so mild that it goes unnoticed. But when the body suffers from iron deficiency and the anemia worsens, the signs and symptoms increase.
Anemia Anemia Signs and symptoms can be:
- Extreme tiredness
- Pale skin
- Chest pain, rapid heartbeat or shortness of breath
- Headache, dizziness or drowsiness
- Cold hands and feet inflammation or pain in the tongue
- Brittle nails
- Unusual craving for non-nutritious substances such as ice, dirt or starch
- Loss of appetite, especially in infants and children with iron deficiency anemia
If you or your child develop signs and symptoms that indicate iron deficiency anemia, see your doctor.
Iron deficiency anemia is not a self-diagnosis or treatment. Consult your doctor for a diagnosis rather than taking iron alone.
Source: Mayo Clinic