Iron (Wo)man

News Note

By Darren Buford

Originally published in Body Sense magazine, Spring/Summer 2004.

Nearly one-fifth of North American women do not get their recommended daily allowance of iron, over time possibly resulting in iron deficiency anemia (IDA). Many women are prone to IDA because of their body’s inability to properly absorb iron from foods like red meat. Vegetarians and vegans are particularly susceptible without a proper understanding of what foods, other than meat, can provide high amounts of iron.

With a few changes in diet, however, energy levels can be quickly restored. A diet including spinach, raisins, pine nuts, lentils, and lima beans can supply the daily recommended allowance of iron. Also, vitamin C may aid in the body’s iron absorption.

If you choose to use iron supplements, 15 milligrams of iron are recommended daily and 30 milligrams are recommended for pregnant women.