Iron is one of the vital minerals present in every living cell of our body, comprised of hemoglobin and myoglobin. While hemoglobin is part of the red blood cells carrying oxygen to the tissues, myoglobin is part of the muscle cells that contain oxygen.
The question is whether you have adequate amount of this mineral. As per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, iron deficiency is the most common nutritional deficiency in our body. To ensure our iron reserves don’t lean toward depletion, we need to include more of iron-rich foods in our diet, if we haven’t already. Here are a few easily available foods that we should adopt in our cooking and eating preference list.
Lentils: Lentils are legumes with an immensely high amount of non-heme iron per serving. Along with being high on nutrients, they come with the benefit of being versatile and light on the pocket.
Dark Chocolate: If you have a sweet tooth, and that too for dark chocolate, this is your luck day, indeed. Did you know dark chocolates provides your body a significant dose of iron? One ounce is all you need to fulfill almost 20 percent of your daily iron requirement.
Spinach: Whether you like it or hate it, you would surely remember Popeye and his can of this healthy goodness. The leafy green vegetable is loaded with iron and other nutrients, too. What comes as bonus is that you can have it raw or cooked.
Sweet potato: Sweet potato is a healthy way to add sweetness to a savory dish. Enriched with iron and vitamin B6, it is known to prevent over 100 health conditions, especially those related to brain and heart.
Pistachios: This savory, munchable snack is reign supreme when it comes to healthy snack ideas for weight control. Just one ounce provides iron as well as high levels of vitamin B6, thiamine and copper.
Black beans: Black beans are great sources of iron as well as protein and fiber. The energy released by the beans in the form of starches make them an excellent carbohydrate source, especially for those who are pre-diabetic or have diabetes.
Raisins: For a fruit, raisins have a really high level of iron per serving. Also, prunes and figs make for other good fruit sources of iron.
Soybean: Soybean is a superfood packed with protein, unsaturated fats, fiber and minerals such as iron and zinc. A single cup of boiled soybean holds almost half the recommended amount of iron for our daily requirements. Tofu, which is a soybean produce, is also highly rich in iron.
Strawberries: Yes, strawberries is a great way to boost our daily iron intake. Not only are strawberries a good source of iron, they also have a high amount of vitamin C that aids in iron absorption.
Asparagus: Asparagus acts as an ally in absorbing the iron from our food intake and is also a great green to delay early aging.
- Eat iron rich diet along with foods rich in vitamin C to help your body absorb iron more efficiently and quickly.
- Tea and coffee have compounds known as polyphenols, which can bind iron, and make it harder to be absorbed by the body.
- Calcium is a major deterrent of iron, and the two don’t go well together, especially if you have an iron deficiency.