Poster Topical Area: Vitamins and Minerals

Location: Hall D

Poster Board Number: 473

P26-011 - Ferritin Readings in Female University Fitness Runners

Sunday, Jun 10
8:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Competitive distance running plus moderately low iron intake in females can cause iron deficiency. This can produce anemia as well as more moderate, but still unhealthy, iron deficiencies. The present study examined serum ferritin concentrations, an indicator of iron status, in 39 young women who run for fitness, but run less than competition runners. Selected subjects all reported themselves as not anemic. Average 3 mile run time was 26.25 + 3.0 minutes (mean + SD). Ferritin readings were 12.4 + 12.3 ng/mL (mean + SD). Out of the 39 women, 29 had readings that fell below 15, which some consider the cutoff for iron deficiency. In addition, all but 3 subjects had values below the average reading listed for US women of this age by the Center for Disease Control. In the present study, ferritin levels only weakly correlated with 3 mile run times. A 1 month intervention with 3 minerals that included iron (36 mg/day) raised ferritin values when the iron was bisglycinate, but not when it was sulfate. In conclusion, this study supports the concept that at least some degree of iron deficiency occurs regularly in young women who run for fitness.

Funding Source: Gatorade Research Institute

Robert A. DiSilvestro

Ohio State University
Columbus, Ohio