Iron is one of the most important nutrients, your body pumps it continuously throughout your bloodstream every day. Iron is a vital nutrient that helps in making hemoglobin, the part that gives your blood the red color. Hemoglobin carries oxygen and carbon dioxide all over your body. It picks up the oxygen through the lungs, takes it into the bloodstream, and leaves it in tissues including your skin and your muscles. Once that process is completed, it picks up carbon dioxide and takes it back to the lungs where it is exhaled from our bodies. For this to function properly, you need to have an iron-rich diet.
What Is Iron Deficiency?
If your body doesn’t absorb the needed amount of iron, it becomes iron deficient. You won’t notice any symptoms until the Iron deficiency has turned into Iron deficiency anemia. If you don’t know, then Iron Deficiency anemia is a condition where the body’s iron stores are so low, that there enough red blood cells can’t be produced to carry oxygen throughout your body in an ideal way. Iron deficiency is one of the most common nutritional deficiencies in the world. Here are the most common symptoms of iron deficiency:
- Pale skin and pale fingernails
- Inflamed tongue
Iron Rich Food List
Shellfish are super tasty and nutritious, it is well known that Shellfish are high in iron. Other foods that contain iron are clams, oysters, and mussels. To show how iron-rich foods shellfish is, a 100-gram service of clams can contain can offer 3 mg of iron.
The iron content of clams varies greatly, some types of clams may contain lower levels of iron than others. The iron found in shellfish is heme iron, which is better for your body than the non-heme iron that is usually found in plants.
As a matter of fact, all types of shellfish are food that contains iron, they are also known to increase the level of heart-healthy HDL cholesterol in your blood. There are also certain concerns about mercury and toxins in certain types of fish and shellfish.
It is one of the best iron-rich vegetarian foods. Spinach provides multiple health benefits but they offer very low amounts of calories. Although this is the non-heme type of iron, which isn’t absorbed very well. Spinach also contains huge amounts of Vitamin C, this is great as Vitamin C helps in boosting iron absorption.
Out of all the vegetables high in iron, Spinach ranks pretty high. The vegetables are also very high in antioxidants known as carotenoids which can reduce your risk of cancer, it can also protect your eyes from disease.
- Liver & Other Organ Meats
For those who eat non-veg, organ meats are extremely nutritious. Popular types of such meats include liver, kidneys, brain, and heart, all of them are high iron-rich foods. Organ meats are known to have high levels of protein, Vitamins B, Copper & Selenium. The liver contains higher levels of Vitamin A, it offers an impressive 1,049% of DV per 3.5 ounces serving. What makes organ meats even more impressive is that they are some of the best sources of choline, which a nutrient that most people don’t get enough on their daily diets. Liver & other organ meats are food that contains iron.
Legumes are chock full of nutrients. Some of the most common types of legumes are beans, chickpeas, peas, and soybeans. Legumes are iron-rich vegetables especially for those who follow a strict vegetarian diet. Beans like black beans, navy beans, and kidney beans can easily boost your intake of iron.
Legumes are also a great source of folate, magnesium, and potassium. What’s more, is that studies have shown that beans and other legumes can reduce inflammation in people who are suffering from diabetes.
Legumes are also a great food source to lose weight, they’re full of soluble fiber which can increase the feeling of fullness and also reduce calorie intake. A high fiber diet full of beans is shown to be as effective as a low carb diet for weight loss.
- Red Meat
Red Meat is one of the best high iron-rich foods. Meat is satisfying and nutritious. Red meat is full of protein, zinc, selenium, and various types of Vitamin B. According to a study containing both vegetarian and non-vegetarian people showed that iron deficiency is the least possible in those who eat meat, poultry, and fish regularly.
As a matter of fact, red meat is most probably the most easily accessible source of heme iron, which makes it an important food item. On our iron-rich foods list, Red Meat ranks pretty high.
- Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds are iron-rich foods for babies, they are also tasty and portable snacks. Along with being high in iron, Pumpkin seeds are a great source of vitamin K, zinc, and manganese. Pumpkin Seeds are among one of the best sources of magnesium. A lot of people have lower levels of magnesium in comparison to other nutrients.
Quinoa is a highly popular grain and they are a type of food that contains iron in huge quantities. What makes it even greater is that Quinoa contains no gluten at all, which is a great food option for those who suffer from celiac disease or any other forms of gluten intolerance.
If you contain Quinoa with other grains, then Quinoa contains the most protein. They are also high in folate, magnesium, copper, and a lot of other nutrients. They also contain higher levels of antioxidants than other grains.
- Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate is delicious and nutritious. They have multiple health benefits apart from being just delicious. Dark chocolates contain prebiotic fiber which helps in nourishing the friendly bacteria that’s found in your gut.
A study on cocoa powder and dark chocolate had higher antioxidants levels than powders and juices made from blueberries. Dark chocolate is high iron food, however, not all chocolates are the same, according to research, a compound called flavanols are responsible for chocolate’s benefits. You should eat chocolate with a minimum of 70% of cocoa to get the maximum benefits. It is one of the best food that contains iron.
Conclusion: Iron Rich Vegetables
Iron is a crucial mineral that has to be consumed on a daily basis as your body can’t produce iron by itself. You can refer to our iron-rich food list, but you should also note that some people need to limit the amount of red meat and other food items that are high in heme iron.