Massage therapy is a physically demanding profession that requires a high level of consistent energy. New research indicates iron supplementation could increase energy in nonanemic women who were low on iron before beginning the supplementation.

Iron supplementation reduced fatigue by almost 50 percent in women who are low in iron but not anemic, according to the results of a clinical trial, according to a press release from the Canadian Medical Association.

“We found that iron supplementation for 12 weeks decreased fatigue by almost 50 percent from baseline, a significant difference of 19 percent compared with placebo, in menstruating iron-deficient nonanemic women with unexplained fatigue and ferritin levels below 50 ?g/L,” writes Bernard Favrat, M.D., Department of Ambulatory Care and Community Medicine, University of Lausanne, Switzerland, with coauthors.

Fatigue is common in patients in primary care practices, with 14 percent to 27 percent suffering from fatigue and 1 percent to 2 percent of visits specifically for fatigue.

Women are three times more likely than men to report fatigue. Positive effects on hemoglobin, ferritin and other blood levels were evident as early as six weeks after iron supplementation.

The research was published CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal).