Are you getting enough essential vitamins and minerals?
Folate, vitamin B12, and vitamin D are essential vitamins that have several important functions in the body. Folate and vitamin B12 are needed for red blood cell formation and DNA synthesis, while vitamin D is essential for proper bone growth and maintenance. All three vitamins also have important roles in the nervous system and immune system.
Iron is a mineral with several essential functions in the body. It constitutes the core of both hemoglobin, the molecule that carries oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body, and myoglobin, a protein that provides oxygen to the muscles. Iron is also essential for growth, normal cell function, and the production of connective tissue and some hormones.
Why consider this test?
- During pregnancy due to the increased demands required for the developing fetus
- At risk of decreased absorption due to gastrointestinal surgery or a digestive disorder
- Proactive prevention – identify any deficiencies today so you can make dietary changes to improve your health and wellbeing
- Part of an evaluation of your overall health and nutrition
- Vegetarians and vegans, as iron from plant sources is not as easily absorbed as from animal sources, vitamin B12 is generally not present in plant foods, and vitamin D is naturally only present in a few foods (e.g. fatty fish)
Common symptoms of vitamin and mineral deficiencies
Common symptoms of vitamin and mineral deficiencies
What’s included in the Vitamin & Iron Deficiency Test?
Vitamin B12 is a water-soluble vitamin that is required for red blood cell formation, neurological function, and DNA synthesis. Many animal products contain vitamin B12, including fish, meat, poultry, eggs, milk, and milk products, but it is generally not present in plant foods. Fortified food products include breakfast cereals and nutritional yeast. Dietary supplements containing vitamin B12 are also available, usually containing the cyanocobalamin form.
Low vitamin B12 levels can lead to fatigue, muscle weakness, gastrointestinal issues, anemia, and memory issues.
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that is required for normal bone growth and remodeling. It also plays a role in the reduction of inflammation, modulation of cell growth, neuromuscular and immune function, and glucose metabolism. Vitamin D is naturally present in a few foods, and is produced endogenously when ultraviolet (UV) rays from sunlight trigger vitamin D synthesis.
Low vitamin D contributes to bone, muscle and joint pain, reduced energy, frequent illnesses, and skeletal deformities.
Folate is an important nutrient that functions as a coenzyme or cosubstrate in various reactions, including the formation of DNA and RNA, and metabolism of amino acids. Folate is naturally present in a wide variety of foods, including vegetables, fruit, nuts, beans, seafood, eggs, dairy products, poultry, and grains. Folic acid is obtained as a dietary supplement and also from enriched bread, cereals, flours, cornmeal, pastas, rice, and other grain products.
Folate deficiency is characterized by fatigue, lethargy, headaches, pale skin, and muscle weakness. Folate deficiency during pregnancy increases the risk of neural tube defects, low birth weight, preterm delivery, and fetal growth retardation.
Ferritin (Iron Stores)
Iron is a mineral with several essential functions in the body. It is required to transport oxygen around the body and is also essential for growth, normal cell function, and the production of connective tissue and some hormones. Good food sources of iron include red meat, beans, nuts, and dried fruit.
Low iron levels can result in anemia, which can have serious repercussions if left untreated, including impaired cognitive function, disturbances in the digestive system, and impaired immunity. Approximately 25% of the iron in a normal adult is present in a storage form, with the most common form being ferritin (accounting for about 2/3 of storage iron). Ferritin analyses provide a sensitive, specific, and reliable measurement for determining iron deficiency at an early stage.
How It Works
Step 1. Order your test.
Choose the test that matches your need from our large array of tests. The kit will be delivered to your doorstep. There is no need to leave the comfort of your home.
Step 2. Collect your sample.
Collect your sample using the included instructions. Return your sample using the prepaid, pre-addressed packaging provided.
Step 3. Access your results online
Your sample will be tested as soon as it arrives at our lab. Access your results securely online via TherizonConnect.
Use TherizonConnect to view your test results quickly and easily
The results are only available through TherizonConnect, a free, secure patient portal that you can access on your smartphone, tablet, or desktop. You can also share your results with your doctor, family, or friends.
Vitamin and Iron FAQ
Here are the answers to the most frequently asked questions about this test. Please feel free to contact us if you have any other questions.
How does the Vitamin & Iron Deficiency Test work?
Self-collect your sample following the detailed instructions included in the kit. Place your sample in the specimen bag provided and mail it back to the lab using the prepaid envelope inside the kit.
Our lab uses verified and approved chemiluminescent microparticle immunoassays (CMIAs) and clinical chemistry assays to accurately measure the vitamin and mineral levels in the sample provided. Your results are available through our online portal as soon as testing is complete.
How much folate do I need?
Folate requirements vary depending on age and pregnancy/breastfeeding status. Infants under 6 months require 65 mcg dietary folate equivalents (DFE) and 80 mcg DFE for infants 7-12 months. The recommended dietary allowance for 1-3 years is 150 mcg DFE, with gradually increasing recommendations until the adult value of 400 mcg DFE by 14 years of age.
Pregnant women should obtain 600 mcg DFE each day, while breastfeeding women should obtain 500 mcg DFE each day. It is recommended that this added requirement be obtained from dietary supplements as folic acid alone or as part of a prenatal vitamin.
How much vitamin B12 do I need?
Vitamin B12 requirements vary depending on age and pregnancy/breastfeeding status. Infants require 0.4 mcg/day (0-6 months) and 0.5 mcg/day (7-12 months). The recommended dietary allowance for children is 0.9 mcg/day (1-3 years), 1.2 mcg/day (4-8 years), and 1.8 mcg/day (9-13 years). Adults require 2.4 mcg/day, except for 2.6 mcg/day during pregnancy and 2.8 mcg/day while breastfeeding.
How much vitamin D do I need?
Recommended dietary allowances for vitamin D are based on the assumption that individuals are receiving minimal sun exposure, although sunlight is the major source of vitamin D for some people. Infants require 10 mcg/day, while children and adults from 1-70 years require 15 mcg/day. The recommended dietary allowance for seniors over 70 years of age is 20 mcg/day.
What are optimal iron levels?
Ferritin levels are a good way to measure an individual’s iron storage levels. Healthy ferritin levels are 20 – 200 ng/mL for females and 40 – 300 ng/mL for males.
Are there medical professionals involved in the process?
All of our tests are developed with advice and input from medical professionals.