Iron is a mineral that serves several important functions in the body. Its main function is carrying oxygen throughout your body and making red blood cells. Iron is an essential nutrient, meaning you must get it from food. The recommended daily intake (RDI) is 18 mg. A deficiency can occur if your intake is too low to replace the amount you lose every day. Iron deficiency can cause anemia and lead to symptoms like fatigue.
Here are 11 everyday foods you could add to your diet to reach a healthy balance.
Shellfish is tasty and nutritious. All shellfish is high in iron, but clams, oysters and mussels are particularly good sources.
Spinach provides many health benefits for very few calories, including high levels or iron. Although this is non-heme iron, which isn’t absorbed as well as other type, spinach is also rich in vitamin C, which significantly boosts iron absorption.
Organ meats are extremely nutritious. Popular types include liver, kidneys, brain and heart. All of these are high in iron.
Red meat is satisfying and nutritious. A 3.5-ounce (100-gram) serving of ground beef contains 2.7 mg of iron, which is 15% of the RDI. Meat is also rich in protein, zinc, selenium and several B-vitamins. Researchers have suggested that iron deficiency may be less likely in people who eat meat, poultry and fish on a regular basis.
Pumpkin seeds are a tasty, portable snack. In addition, pumpkin seeds are a good source of vitamin K, zinc and manganese. They’re also among the best sources of magnesium, which many people are deficient in.
Turkey meat is a healthy and delicious food. It’s also a good source of iron — especially dark turkey meat. In addition, turkey contains an impressive 29 grams of protein per serving.
Broccoli is incredibly nutritious and a good source of iron. What’s more, a serving of broccoli also contains 168% of the RDI for vitamin C, which helps your body absorb the iron better (8, 43). In addition, this serving of broccoli is high in folate and provides 6 grams of fiber. It also contains vitamin K.
Tofu is a soy-based food that’s popular among vegetarians and in some Asian countries. Tofu is also a good source of iron, along with thiamin and several minerals, including calcium, magnesium and selenium. In addition, it provides 20 grams of protein per serving.
Dark chocolate is incredibly delicious and nutritious. A 1-ounce (28-gram) serving contains 3.3 mg of iron, which is 19% of the RDI. This small serving also provides 25% of the RDI for copper and 16% of the RDI for magnesium.
Iron is an important mineral that must be consumed regularly. Yet it should be noted that some people need to limit their intake of red meat and other foods high in heme iron. However, most people are easily able to regulate the amount they absorb from food. Remember that if you don’t eat meat or fish, you can boost absorption by including a source of vitamin C when eating plant sources of iron.
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25 May 2016