The Better Health Channel determines that low iron levels can cause long-term damage only if an iron deficiency leads to anemia and is left untreated. Symptoms of anemia include irregular or rapid heartbeat, feeling short of breath and dizziness, according to the American Society of Hematology.
Those at risk of anemia include menstruating women, pregnant women, vegetarians and people who have recently undergone surgery, according to the American Society of Hematology. Increasing iron intake can be accomplished by eating a diet of iron-rich foods, such as liver, beef, chicken, fish, black-eyed pas, leafy greens and iron-enriched foods. In severe cases, one may need to have iron supplements prescribed by a doctor in order to replenish iron stores.