Iron Deficiency—Three Steps to Raising Low Ferritin

If you’ve had a hard time raising your iron levels, I’m going to tell you three reasons why and how to fix it. My name is Dr. Tom Rofrano from the Natural Medicine Clinic, in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.

The 1st Reason Iron and Ferritin Levels Aren’t Improving 

Most of our patients come in with gut and thyroid issues. Many of them have either low ferritin or high ferritin, which is indicative of your stored iron levels. One patient, a woman in her early 50s, came in and had low ferritin levels. Her level was at a 7 ng/ml for three years and even though she was taking iron, she couldn’t raise her levels, and she wanted my help. 

The first reason why her iron levels weren’t improving was because she was taking the wrong type of iron. Her primary doctor discovered she had low ferritin and told her to go buy iron. The most common type of iron people purchase is ferrous sulfate in a 65 mg dose, which has a very low absorption rate as well as causing gastrointestinal symptoms. Many people will just stop taking it. I recommend Iron Glycinate, which is much more absorbable and causes very little GI symptoms.

The 2nd Reason Your Iron and Ferritin Levels Aren’t Improving 

The second reason your iron levels are not improving is not taking iron for a long enough period. Even though my patient had been taking iron supplements for three years, she took it for a period of months and then had her levels retested and her iron was high, so her doctor told her to stop taking it. 

Even though her iron percent saturation was high, her ferritin was still low. Your iron can be high because you took an iron supplement within the last day or two, but until your ferritin, which represents your stored iron levels, comes to an ideal level, you often need to keep taking it. 

The 3rd Reason Your Iron and Ferritin Levels Aren’t Improving

Thirdly, not finding out the root cause of why your iron and ferritin levels are low. Her primary care doctor sent her to multiple specialists to rule out that she wasn’t having any bleeding, and all those appointments showed normal results, so she was at a loss. 

When she came in, I did comprehensive testing to find the underlying root cause. She had the common symptoms of low iron and ferritin: fatigue, forgetfulness, hair loss, inability to lose weight, lack of focus and concentration, as well as gut symptoms of bloating and constipation

After doing some comprehensive testing, I discovered she had a very high gluten sensitivity and leaky gut. She also had bacterial overgrowth, yeast overgrowth, and inflammation in her intestines. All this led to iron malabsorption, and she also had some other nutritional deficiencies. 

The FreeDiet® Fix

Typically, when you’re iron deficient, there are other deficiencies that go along with that too. She had several deficiencies including selenium (which is important for the thyroid). She has a thyroid condition called Hashimoto’s autoimmune thyroid and selenium is very important for that syndrome. 

To fix the malabsorption issue I put her on a specific diet I call The FreeDiet® because it eliminates gluten, grains, sugar, yeast, dairy, eggs, oil, soy, legumes, and processed foods—all foods most commonly responsible for inflammation, leaky gut, and other chronic health issues. 

Go here for your complimentary copy of The FreeDiet® phase one food chart.

As far as supplements, I put her on the right amount and type of iron called Iron Glycinate at a dose of 120 milligrams a day, gut support supplements, and other nutrients she was low in. 

Seeing Positive Results

After a month’s time, her gut symptoms improved, she had more energy, and better focus and concentration. Her hair loss was at least 50% improved and she lost eight pounds in one month. 

Her ferritin was up to 29 ng/ml, which was about 300% higher than it had been the prior three years, so a major improvement. I would like to see her ferritin level in at least the 50-60 range, so she has way to go, and at least she has been increasing her ferritin levels.

I believe that most everyone can get better once they discover the root cause and are provided the right solutions. 

Contact Us for Help with Raising Ferritin Levels

If you’ve been struggling with low ferritin levels, give us a call at 561-627-5800 or email us at We would love to help you with your health journey.


  • Are you saying here that elevated transferrin saturation is normal in the context of iron supplementation?

    • I have seen high serum iron or saturation that is very temporary while taking supplements. It is important to look at that with ferritin, TIBC and other tests mentioned in the video.

      • I also have hashimotos for 16 years. I have long ago dealt with my gut issues and my T3,T4 and TSH are now in the middle of normal ranges. It has taken years but my thyroid antibodies are down to almost normal. My iron and saturation is up without iron supplementation or consumption of red meat but my transferrin and TIBC are right on the lower border of normal ranges. My Ferritin is 50 and my doctor says my total blood test is the best it’s been for years. ” better than a twenty year old” So why am I still tired. I am still struggling to lose weight despite for years intermittant fasting every morning, eating a meditatranian, low carb pescatarian diet. I’m 55 and also workout every second day.

        • There are often many underlying root causes that go along with Hashimoto’s. For these cases, I do comprehensive testing in five main areas to see what else is a factor. If you search Hashimoto’s on our blog, you will see other videos on the topic. See if you have a doctor in your area to help you with this. If not, you can email or call us, and would be happy to help.

  • Hello namaste. I’m 13 weeks 6 days pregnant. Daily full vomitings. I’m unable to take food and medicines also , in this condition what can i do.. Please advice me.. Actually I hate tablets that’s why it’s very hard in this situation to me.

    • This is not advice to you since I do not know your history, but I have helped pregnant patients with similar issues and do well with the FreeDiet and drinking ginger tea.

  • Thank you,
    I finally took the few moments to tune in.
    I’m going to get the proper iron glycinate (20mg) and take selenium for a long period of time and taper off when my ferritin levels are up to 50-60. And remove gluten from my diet.

    God Bless.

  • Hi. My ferretin levels are 24, iron saturatiom 11.7, and iron (fe) is 39. My TSH is .86 and my T4 Free is 1.09. I’ve tested positive for Ana and smooth muscle antibody. I have large thyroid nodules. For the past month Ive had so much a nominal pain. I’m worried all the time. They say I have fibromyalgia and autoimmune hepatitis. They did an upper endoscopy but said they only saw mild gastritis. I’ve been having a lot of bloating too. I’m 46, a third grade teacher and single mom. I can’t afford your services even with the payment plan. I wouldn’t have it paid off in time. I don’t know what to do anymore. Please help!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • freediet-img

    Download The FreeDiet® Phase 1 Food Chart

    from Dr. Rofrano's best-selling book, The FreeDiet®

    • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

    Success Stories

    Natural treatment for Migraine Headaches, neck pain, digestive problems, fatigue.
    To read more and to view full-sized video, click HERE

    Rebecca Dyckman
    Rebecca Dyckman
    00:52 15 Sep 21
    I began treatment under Dr. Tom and Dawn in early August. I had a shopping list of complaints. Many of them I'd been dealing with for 25 to 30 years. Traditional doctors told me again and again that I was perfectly... healthy, implying that much of this was in my head. Dr. Tom ran numerous tests based on his hunches, and I'm glad that he did. Tests revealed many things never uncovered by any of my previous doctors. I began feeling relief from some symptoms within a few days and gradually began feeling relief from most others. I'm about 5 weeks into the program and feeling so much better. I had concerns about sticking it out because it is definitely a vastly different way of doing things and it is quite an investment. But there is a light at the end of the tunnel. This is the first time in my many years of trying to get better that I can actually see that light. I am excited to update in another few months because I feel certain that I'll be able to report that I am fully healed. Thank you Dr. Tom and Dawn (and Angelika). You all are an amazing team and I feel blessed that you all are working so hard to get me well. Thank you!!read more
    Andrea Fiebe
    Andrea Fiebe
    12:46 23 Aug 21
    I am beyond grateful for Dr. Tom and his staff!! Kayla, Dawn and Alexandra have gone out of their way to help me and I know my situation hasn't been easy. I came to Dr. Tom with a long list of issues and hopeless. I am... proud to say that a year later and I am thriving. I went from not working out at all to working out 4 days a week, plus yoga. I traveled around the country to many holistic doctors and he has been the only way to help me see major progress. My only regret is that I didn't meet him sooner. I feel taken care of and so grateful for my experience with more
    Amanda Bailey
    Amanda Bailey
    18:27 09 Aug 21
    Dr. Tom Rofrano's Natural Medicine Clinic has changed my life. I came to him with an enlarged thyroid nodule, pain in my joints and tendons, increasing weight, imbalanced hormones, a leaky gut and so many other issues... that I didn't even know were causing my symptoms. After extensive testing, he put me on a tailored protocol as well as the Free Diet (trademarked) to help clear up my symptoms. I have been on this protocol for 5 months and I have never felt better. I have more energy, reduced stress, overall happiness, no pain in my joints, clear skin, better menstrual cycles, no pms symptoms of irritability or mood swings. I lost 20 lbs and my gut is healing. All with supplements, dietary changes, and environmental changes to my daily life. I emphatically endorse this method and hope everyone seeks him out. He got to the root cause of my symptoms and I am on a path to heal myself holistically without traditional medicine. In addition to Dr. Rofrano, everyone in his clinic is extremely helpful and generous with their time. I have never met a more caring team of support from a clinic. Thank you to Kayla and Angelika and all the NMC support team for what they have done for me. In addition, I don't even live nearby and Dr. Rofrano and his team have worked to ship all my tests and supplies to me, Zoom my follow up visits, and help me find what I need in my area. So grateful to them all.-Amanda Baileyread more
    Christine VanBasten
    Christine VanBasten
    15:54 30 Jul 21
    I was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis in 2001 and have had severe abdominal swelling since 2008. People continuously asked me when my baby was due and I was never pregnant. I didn't want to be in public or go to work... because I didn't feel well and I was extremely self conscious of my body shape. Since starting the FreeDiet in March 2021, I have lost 12 pounds. I am no longer bloated and all my coltis symptoms have disappeared. After completing extensive bloodwork and testing Dr. Rofrano discovered that I am allergic to Gluten and Candida. I knew I was allergic to Gluten and knew that I struggled with Candida but never realized I could be allergic to Candida as well. After eliminating anything fermented from my diet, I feel pain free in my stomach. Food is enjoyable once again. I am very happy with my improved health and energy thanks to this diet, supplements and to Dr. Rofrano. My colleagues are commenting and how healthy and young I look. I highly recommend Dr. Rofrano and all his more
    Troy Stark
    Troy Stark
    14:36 15 Jun 21
    Testosterone gain of 50% in 30 days with NO drugs. DR. Tom’s nutrition and supplement guidance is foolproof, however, it’s up to you to do the work. My bloodwork improved amazingly across the full spectrum. If you want... to be healthy and actually see the lab results go to NMC!read more
    Betty Diller
    Betty Diller
    20:06 19 Apr 21
    I was in a very sickly state with very high blood pressure, Epstein Barr Virus, severe digestive issues, IBS, and constant UTI ‘s that were always back to back. My cholesterol was 244 and my inflammation was off the... charts / extremely high!!!! I decided to read “free diet” book written by Dr Rofrano. It made total sense, so I decided to proceed with the blood tests. This is when I discovered all my lab work was in a very poor state. He uncovered a lot of information and made me aware of why my health was poor and why I was feeling badly!!! I started to follow the diet and take the suggested supplements. Within 5 to 6 weeks everything turned around for me. My labs were nearly perfect in all the previously scary areas where the numbers were completely out of range. I am feeling much better and I am raving about the free diet / supplements that Dr Rofrano can offer you for your specific issues. he is gifted to know exactly how to help each person deal with their health issues. I am grateful to God I found him and had the initiative to move forward!!!! PTL !!!!read more
    Janet Oquendo
    Janet Oquendo
    13:41 27 Jan 21
    My health had been declining over the last 5 years. I have consulted with no less than 6 naturopaths. Non of which was able to help me regain my health. After more recent lab tests my Feritin level had skyrocketed at... which point now I was worried. Every one I spoke to said the only option was to do leeching (where they draw out your blood periodically). That did not sound like an option. Then I found Dr Rofrano. To be honest I was extremely skeptical as I have spend lots of money and time with other naturopaths only to end up right back at the beginning. However I had nothing to loose (other than $$$) I decided to give him one try before I competely gave up. I can say I am 100% happy!!!... After an in-depth consultation, and extensive testing. Many deficiencies were uncovered not to mention, sensitivities, thyroid, hormones, high cholesterol the list goes on and on. We began a supplement regiment to get things back on track. Its now 6 weeks later. My labs have significantly improved, my cholesterol is now in normal range, my feritin level has significantly dropped and I am feeling a lot better. Its still early and my body has more healing to do. I am ecstatic to say we are on the right track. My labs have never looked better. If you are just not feeling well and really need to find a solution would highly recommend you contact the Natural Medicine Clinic and speak to Dr Tom Rofrano.. you will NOT be more
    Shannon Empfield
    Shannon Empfield
    00:29 03 Jan 21
    Great Dr. his book is amazing and the supplements they sell are of highest quality. I’ve been taking them for years now and my health has improved greatly. I highly recommend Natural Medicine Clinic.
    D M
    D M
    14:02 23 Dec 20
    Stay away. Extremely expensive for results. All they want to do is throw pills at you for thousands of dollars.. Not worth the money.Find someone who takes an interest in your health not your wallet.
    Eric Myskowski
    Eric Myskowski
    18:02 18 Jun 20
    If you’re looking to take back your health and move foreword into longevity, I highly suggest Dr. Rofrano and his excellent team. They provide you with step by step guidance on how to make all your health dreams a... reality. Be ready to commit to his individualized program for the best results possible. I would recommend Dr. Rofrano and his practice to anyone and everyone looking to finally understand your health and what it takes to get back to living the life you want to live. This is what real health is all more
    More reviews


    Monday 9 AM – 5 PM
    Tuesday 9 AM – 5 PM
    Wednesday 9 AM – 5 PM
    Thursday 9 AM – 5 PM
    Friday 9 AM – 1 PM

  • Schedule An

    We can help you look and feel the best you have in years!

    Natural Medicine Clinic

    Chiropractor Palm Beach Gardens, FL
    2401 PGA Boulevard Ste 132
    Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33410

    Serving the Florida communities of:

    Palm Beach Gardens, North Palm Beach,
    Jupiter, Tequesta, Singer Island
    and West Palm Beach.

    Content on this website is based upon the opinions of Thomas Rofrano, D.C. and is not considered medical advice. It is designed to be a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of Dr. Rofrano and his community. Dr. Rofrano encourages you to make your health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional. Dr. Rofrano is a chiropractic physician and offers physical and nutritional support and guidance to those seeking alternative or complementary care to traditional medicine. His care is not meant to replace that from your primary doctor and specialists but rather to help you on your path to achieving life-long vibrant health.

    Regarding any supplements mentioned: *These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. If you are pregnant, nursing, taking medication, or have a medical condition, consult your physician before using this product.