The first week of June is International Haemochromatosis Awareness Week. This genetic disorder affects thousands of Australians; yet, it is under diagnosed leading to serious health complications that could be prevented with early detection and treatment.
Kala Body founder Chloe was diagnosed with haemochromatosis a few years ago. In this post she shares her story.
Many years ago, before Kala Body was even an idea, I was living in London and generally enjoying life. I had a great job and a busy lifestyle, so it was easy to assume that was why I felt so tired all the time.
But as the months went on, my fatigue was getting more pronounced. I’d zone out during conversations, unable to keep track of the last words I’d said. I was constantly feeling run down, despite getting plenty of sleep and eating lots of iron-rich foods. It was getting harder to enjoy life when I felt so tired all the time.
And then, by chance, my uncle was tested for a genetic condition called haemochromatosis. Once he was confirmed as having it, two of his brothers were also tested and found to carry the gene. My family called me and suggested that I get tested also.
At the time I had no idea what haemochromatosis was. But I went to the local hospital and requested a blood test.
It came back as positive for the condition. A doctor explained that the reason I was feeling so tired all the time wasn’t because I wasn’t sleeping enough or eating well.
It was because my body was couldn’t properly process the iron in my body and it had reached dangerous levels.
What is haemochromatosis?