Metformin and Iron

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New Member

Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 7/22/2006 3:41 PM (GMT -7)   
I'm still getting used to being recently diagnosed with Type 2 (2 1/2 months ago) and i am on metformin 500mg 3 times a day but recent blood tests show that my iron levels are low. Anemia runs in the family. My doctor put me on ferrous sulphate 600mg a day. The side affects are rough, but I have to take them. Along with my change in diet I feel that I spend most of my time going to the toilet. I have had to go through a complete lifestyle change, and my body is having a rough time, here comes the silly question.
How long does it really take to get used to all of this stuff?

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 64
   Posted 7/22/2006 5:32 PM (GMT -7)   
That's a pretty drastic dose ... how high were your BS readings?

The short form for "you are" is "you're", NOT "your".

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 101
   Posted 7/22/2006 6:06 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi there,
Extended release form of metformin(Glucophage XR)"may" decrease adverse events, specifically gastrointestinal-related adverse events (i.e., flatulence, diarrhea); however, larger trials comparing regular-release to extended-release metformin are needed to confirm these claims as, currently, results are conflicting with some studies indicating similarity in gastrointestinal tolerability and others indicating that extended- release formulations are better tolerated.
Shifting to (again) a prolonged release formulation of Iron(Slow Fe)"may have lesser side-effects as compared to plain Ferrous sulphate form.
All said and done taking thrice daily metformin and plain ferrous sulphate is a cocktail you want to be without!Check it out with your Doctor!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 534
   Posted 7/23/2006 11:27 AM (GMT -7)   

Hi DD,

I don't know why so many doctors prescribe ferrous gluconate or sulfate with no regard to the absorbability or the effects.  Basically, that dose of ferrous sulfate makes you go the bathroom a lot but does very little for your anemia.  You should be taking "CHELATED" iron as the chelation process makes it much more absorbabe and so that it won't be counteracted by other drugs or vitamins.  Aside from that, you need to take a really healthly dose of ester c and vitamin b12.  The b12 works directly with the iron to make sure more of it is absorbed and utilized by the body!  I say "ester" c vs. regular ascorbic acid as it is MUCH easier on your tummy and again,you will absorb much more of it.  Again, without a long disertation in "why", lets just say that the c works with the b12 specifically to support your "iron" absorbtion and utiliztion.  Take these two for a week with your iron and I'll wager your anemia is substantially reduced.

500mg of metformin 3 times a day is not a huge dose.  There are many people that take at least a 1000mg. at least twice a day.  However, make sure you take it with a meal vs. on an empty tummy as it will surely increase your gastric distress.  Im guessing that the lunch time dose is probably pretty ineffective in the overally scheme of things and is probably just prescribed to keep the overall level in your blood stream constant.  Other, than that, it just takes time to get used to metformin. If you have diarrhea for more than two weeks, talk to your doctor.

scool Warren

It's not that some people have willpower and some don't. It's that some people are ready to change and others are not. - James Gordon, M.D.
What some call health, if purchased by perpetual anxiety about diet, isn't much better than tedious disease. - George Dennison Prentice

I can only please one person per day, today is not your day...tomorrow doesn't look good either.

Post Edited (Warren) : 7/23/2006 12:33:02 PM (GMT-6)

New Member

Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 14
   Posted 7/23/2006 5:43 PM (GMT -7)   
I hear you Dizzy, I just was diagnosed with Type II diabetes in April. I wonder how long it will take as well. I take 500 mg metformin at breakfast and 100 mg at dinner time. For some reason my morning blood sugars are always too high. They want them to be under 120 but they are usually in the 130 to 140s range.


Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 6056
   Posted 7/23/2006 9:32 PM (GMT -7)   
The other thing about metformin is that if you consume too many carbohydrates it will give you drastic diarrhea. My doctor told me to remember that "If you overdo you go pooh!" Whenever I have this symptom a quick check back over my recent food intake will usually show up too many carbs, especially rice or potatoes! They will do it to me every time.
~ Jeannie

"People are like stained glass windows: They sparkle and shine when the sun's out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is light within."

- Elizabeth Kubler-Ross

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 101
   Posted 7/24/2006 4:56 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi there,
            Iron,typically is best absorbed on empty stomach and is usually advised 30 min.before breakfast to be taken with a glass of orange juice(contains Vit.C) or with a Vit.C supplement.Fibers,phytates,coffee,tea and bran interfere with the absorption.
In people like "DIZZY DEVIL"the options are, depending on the severity of iron deficit,either taking it with meals or in a more drastic situation like excess menstrual bleeding in one cycle compounding the situation,considering an Intravenous route of administration.
Trace amounts of Vit.B2(Riboflavin)and copper too, help to correct the iron-def.anaemia
In Jano's case the dinnertime dose must have been 1000mgs;Typer's devil!

Post Edited (spooky) : 7/24/2006 6:24:04 AM (GMT-6)

New Member

Date Joined Jul 2017
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 7/10/2017 7:52 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi, I'm new here. I just read the 2006 post from Warren about taking vitamin C with vitamin B12. I am severely anemic and I was told to take my iron supplements with vitamin C on an empty stomach. Warren (or anyone else who 100% knows) am I to understand that I would be taking the iron + vitamin C + vitamin B12 TOGETHER?

Thanks so much for all your help.

Elite Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 19932
   Posted 7/10/2017 9:37 PM (GMT -7)   
hi, very old thread, and not sure what members who have posted are still around. best bet is your pharmacist. i have done your combo, and i just dropped them before breakfast.

Lanie G
Forum Moderator

Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 5986
   Posted 7/11/2017 4:40 AM (GMT -7)   
Sonos2000, yes, you should take them together. The HTreturns is correct that this is a very old thread and the members aren't around anymore to answer you. A pharmacist is certainly a trusted source of information for this.

In the meantime, this is from WebMD:

I hope you are doing well otherwise. Please create a new thread/topic to introduce yourself. I'm glad you found HealingWell!

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled by diet and exercise and
very low carb way of eating

Check out the following site for more info on blood sugar:
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