We have designed our products to ensure the proper absorption of iron. You may have heard that calcium blocks iron absorption, but this effect has not been demonstrated in recent studies, bringing this teaching into question. This is especially true when you look at the calcium to iron ratio.
To actually affect iron uptake, you would need a calcium to iron ratio of 220:1 (Gaitan, et al. J Nutr 2011 Sep 27; 141 (9): 1652-6). The ratio in Baricol® Complete is 20:1, so iron absorption should not be affected at such a low ratio. Additionally, our products contain vitamin C and iron citrate, both of which increase iron absorption.
From our perspective, the major problem with maintaining iron levels after surgery is due to a lack of adherence to taking vitamins. This could be from someone simply not taking their supplements, or it could be someone purposely not taking iron due to the gastrointestinal (GI) distress it can cause, especially at high doses.
Three things that can help with GI distress are taking your iron-containing supplements with food, choosing forms of iron that are easier on the stomach, and dividing the total amount of iron into smaller doses throughout the day.
We’ve created our products with a type of iron that is easy on the stomach (iron citrate), and you can choose to take all the doses at once or spread throughout the day depending on what’s easiest for you and your stomach.
We hope that these things help increase adherence to keep your iron levels where they need to be.