Iron helps our cells carry oxygen to our muscles, so when you lack it you can suffer from a decreased immunity, low cognitive function and severe fatigue.
How much iron an individual needs depends on their overall lifestyle. For example, vegetarians need more as they don't eat meat. Your diet is key, so we've listed some iron-rich foods you can incorporate into your meals to get the perfect balance.
Vegans and vegetarians, here is your answer; it boasts both iron and protein. Made out of soybean curds, it's also low calorie, free from cholesterol and gluten-free. You can have it anything from a stir fry to a curry, or you could even scramble is as a replacement for egg on your toast.
Meat eaters, this one is for you. One serving of beef can give your body up to 3.5mg of the recommended 17mg of iron a day - serve with spinach (also full of the stuff) and you're on track! Too much red meat isn't healthy, but if you make sure you eat lean pieces and keep under 18oz a week you can feel quietly confident in your iron levels.
Even more impressive, white beans contain up to 20 per cent of your recommended daily iron intake per portion! They don't have any flavour so can be incorporated into a chilli or a salad without throwing you off. Season with whatever tickles your taste buds and enjoy!
Depending on the clam, you can get a lot of iron out of these little things. Canned and minced clams don't boast as high levels as fresh ones, with baby ones especially high. They're not the easiest food to get your hands on though, so perhaps save this option for a restaurant dinner or weekend treat every now and then. They also boast vitamins B-12 and C, along with proteins.
Sprinkle some dried fruit like raisins or apricots in your salads, cereal or yoghurt, as they are iron-tastic. They are packed full of sugar too though so keep your helpings small and stick to eating them once a day to get the best benefits.
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