Iron from meats, nuts, fruits, and vegetables and daily intake need by age
|People require iron and have upper limits of how much can be taken for health. Iron is a part of hemoglobin (blood stuff) that helps with the transfer of oxygen to cells. If that weren’t enough, it also supports metabolism, growth, cell function, making connective tissue and hormones! So, yeah, we need iron. Oh, and the chemical symbol for iron is Fe.
Certain people are at risk for Iron deficiency: those with cancer and heart problems, pregnant women, and ladies with heavy menstrual flow, infants, young children, and frequent blood donors (thank you for the charity, but take care of you, too).
Babies (infants from birth to 1 year optimal iron intake is 40mg. Babies should gain iron from: breast milk, formula, and food (not by vitamins). Once you aren’t a baby anymore, baby, the optimal iron intake is still 40 mg until age 19 then it ups to 45mg. By the way, “mg” represents a unit using the metric system and means one thousandth of a gram. So, to chart iron need:
Age of Male or Female Amount of Fe needed
Baby 1 -12 months 40mg
1-10 year(s) 40mg
11-18 year(s) 40mg
19+ year(s) 45mg
Ladies, if you are or plan to be a mother:
While pregnant 45mg
While nursing 45mg
Just an aside, have you noticed a lady, a girl, or a woman is technically called Female—the original and perpetual IRONman. Okay, it made me chuckle…
Food that contains iron would be helpful to plan where to get your daily mg worth of Fe. Probably figure meat or tofu, right? Well, yeah those will work, BUT the highest food source of Fe is SQUASH!
Though charts could be provided, lists by food type will work, too. Let us start with vegetables, since squash just started the list.
Vegetable sources of Fe:
3. Swiss Chard (cooked)
4. Turnip Greens (cooked)
5. Kale (raw)
6. Beet Greens (raw)
Beans, pulses and nut sources of Fe:
1. White beans
4. Kidney beans
5. Garbanzo beans/chickpeas
6. Lima beans
7. Navy beans
8. Cocoa beans mostly as dark chocolate
9. Black-eyed peas
11. Pine nuts
16. Macadamia nuts
In case you were wondering what a pulse is (food-wise) it is the dried seed of legumes like chickpeas or dried peas. Otherwise, a pulse refers to the rate of a heartbeat felt on the wrists or neck…heh, the source of iron title that included pulse was NOT an encouragement to suck blood as it is pumped…why would you even think that?!
Seafood Fe sources:
Meat sources for Fe:
1. Chicken Liver
2. Chicken white and dark meat
7. Goose Liver
Beef is referring to the meat of a cow. Venison refers to deer meat.
Finally, there are vitamin supplements for Iron, as well. Stay healthy!!