joint pain --> iron overload??

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created August 14, 2012 at 3:58 PM

Hi, thanks in advance for reading... I've recently stepped up my lifting game. I've lifted 3-4x a week for a few years but recently graudated college at put my drinking days behind me allowing me to step up the intensity and get more calories per week due to not missing meals. All hasbeen great but my joints (ankles, wrists, knees) have gotten really sore the last 48 hrs. Yesterday was an off day and they even were dramatically worse than the day before. I have started eating about 50 grams more protein a day and heard about iron overload.

Typical days protein: 8-9 jumbo organic eggs, 8 oz fresh ahi tuna or salmon, 6 oz grass fed ground beef, 6-7 organic ribeye

Getting about 150-160 g fat a day from the protein sources + brazil nuts, GF butter, olive oil

Carbs - sweet potatos, broc, cauli, kale ~75/day off days ~125- lifting days

I've eaten ribeyes probably 4 of the last 5 nights which. Anyone know if this diet has too much iron causing sore joints or is there any other vit deficiencies that cause this?




on August 15, 2012
at 12:02 AM

PS I dont think iron can overload in a short time. Its usually older folks that get that. There are quite a few deficiencies that may or may not be relate to joint pain. Maybe try eating a bigger variety of veg (and the occasional peice of fruit) and see if that helps. Bit of beef liver can be worth a go too.



on August 14, 2012
at 11:58 PM

You should probably take it easy on the brazil nuts, just as an aside. Just one of those bad boys has enough selenium for a few days of RDA. One cant be sure what effect a large amount may have, if its a regular. Swap some out for macadamias, almonds or walnuts - I reckon.

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4 Answers


on December 02, 2012
at 08:22 PM

I am not a weight lifter but I found this page while searching for a link between nuts and joint pain. I have been eating a ton of pecans and suddenly my knee is so painful I can hardly walk. I didn't injure it. Very strange. Also my elbow got sore but not as bad as my knee. Any thoughts as to whether you think it could be related to the pecans? I am female, 56 and in very good health.



on August 15, 2012
at 02:51 AM

I noticed joint pain when I ate "Omega 3" eggs from chickens fed mostly flaxseeds. When I got hives from eating ground flaxseed myself, I stopped eating the flaxy eggs & my joint pain went down. I also notice that too many nuts - any nuts - cause joint pain too.



on August 14, 2012
at 05:22 PM

Of all the things that cause joint pain, I've never heard of iron being a problem. If anything, iron-deficiency/anemia is associated with joint problems.

My guess is that it has to do with you stepping up your lifting game. Maybe you should gradually ease into a harder routine instead of put sudden extra stress on your body.


on August 15, 2012
at 01:13 AM

I have iron overload, it's taken many years to climb up in numbers.

The joint pain is most likely due to your lifting frequency. A more paleolithic approach to fitness will probably encourage you to do high intensity workout once-twice a week, no more. With ample time for healing. Also, make sure that you're in proper form, not burdening your joints in any way.

I highly recommend Doug McGuff, MD's work, "Body by Science". He has a lecture on YouTube which can get you started.

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