Iron is a very important mineral for our body. Everyone regardless the age and gender needs Iron. Let’s look at the top ten food sources of Iron.
Why we need iron?
To make our blood healthy we need to eat foods rich in iron. As you know our cells need oxygen to live. Iron helps our blood to carry oxygen to every cell in our body. Lack of iron can make us sick. Both fatigue and anemia which means our blood cannot carry enough oxygen to all the cells in our body) can happen due to the shortage of iron.
How much iron do we need?
It depends on the age and gender that how much iron a person needs. The need for iron is much more at the time of growth that means we need more iron in the childhood and also in the age of adolescence. Also, extra iron is needed at the time of pregnancy; because of the baby and for the increasing amount of blood in mother’s body.
Daily Iron Needs
Infants, 7-12 months 11 mg
Children, 1-8 years 7-10 mg
Children, 9-13 years 8 mg
Males, 14-18 11 mg
Females, 14-18 15 mg
Men, ages 19-50 8 mg
Women, ages 19-50 18 mg
Men & women, ages 51+ 8 mg
Pregnant women 27 mg
Breastfeeding women 9 mg
Top 10 Food Sources of Iron
- Clams: Clams are full of iron. Three ounce of clams can provide 23.8 mg of iron.
- Oysters: Three ounce of oysters contain 10.2 mg of iron.
- Soybeans: Half cup of the cooked soybeans contains 4.4 mg of iron.
- Pumpkin Seed: An ounce of roasted pumpkin seeds provides 4.2 mg of iron.
- White Beans: A half cup of white beans provide 3.9 mg of iron.
- Blackstrap Molasses: One tablespoon of blackstrap molasses provides 3.5 mg of iron.
- Lentils: Half cup of cooked lentils can provide 3.3 mg of iron.
- Prune Juice: ¾ cup of prune juice contains 2.3 mg of iron.
- Organ Meats: Meats or animal bits contain high percentage of iron.
- Spinach: Spinach is also a very good source of iron. One cup of cooked spinach provides 3.5 mg of iron.
Iron is good for our health but remember too much iron is harmful to our body. So it is important to have it in a right amount. If you are unsure, consult your doctor.