Iron is an essential mineral used to transport oxygen to all parts of the body. A slight deficiency in iron causes anemia (fatigue/weakness), and a chronic deficiency can lead to organ failure. Conversely, too much iron leads to production of harmful free radicals, and interferes with metabolism, causing damage to organs like the heart and liver.
The body is able to regulate uptake of iron, so overdose is rare and usually only occurs when people take supplements. Iron from natural food sources, like the ones listed below, are considered safe and healthy. While iron is better absorbed from heme (meat) sources, non-heme (plant) iron is better regulated causing less damage to the body. The current percent daily value for iron is 18 milligrams (mg). Below is a list of high iron foods.
To boost the amount of iron in your diet, try these foods:Courtesy: healthaliciousness, WebMD
- Red meat
- Egg yolks
- Dark, leafy greens (spinach, collards)
- Dried fruit (prunes, raisins)
- Dried Apricots
- Sun Dried Tomatoes
- Cocoa Powder or Dark Chocolate
- Iron-enriched cereals and grains (check the labels)
- Mollusks (oysters, clams, scallops)
- Turkey or chicken giblets
- Beans, lentils, chick peas and soybeans
Tip: If you eat iron-rich foods along with foods that provide plenty of vitamin C, your body can better absorb the iron.