People who are vegetarians need to consume more iron than non-vegetarians because the iron in plant foods is not absorbed as efficiently as the iron in meat.
But that does not mean you need red meat to get your daily iron requirements. You only need to make sure that you are consuming some of the nutrient-rich foods listed below daily:
Raw or cooked spinach is high in iron. A 100-gram serving of fresh, uncooked spinach has about 2.8 milligrams of iron, which is equivalent to 15 % of the Reference Daily Value for iron. Spinach also contains vitamin C, a nutrient that enhances iron absorption, and molybdenum, a trace element that may help our body utilize iron more effectively.
Vitamin C makes the iron in plant-based foods, like spinach, more available to our body’s cells. A great idea to supply your body with lots of (plant-based) iron and vitamin C is to drink a green smoothie with fresh spinach and vitamin C rich fruits like oranges or kiwis.
Cumin is high in iron, containing more than 65 mg for every 100 grams, more than 5 times the daily needs for an adult. For people who suffer from fatigue, digestive issues, cognitive malfunction, anemic and anxiety, cumin can provide necessary iron needs when incorporated into the daily diet. Iron is the main component of hemoglobin, present in the red blood corpuscles. Hemoglobin helps to transfer oxygen to body cells, and when deficient, causes anemia.
3. Romaine lettuce
Butterhead, iceberg, green leaf and red leaf, are just a few common lettuce types available at most stores. But, in terms of nutrient density, the Romaine lettuce is most healthy of all. If you start your meal with a romaine lettuce salad, you will be sure to add not only many different textures and flavors to your meal but a high amount of nutritional value. This lettuce is a very good source of iron. With only 1 cup we can cover all our daily iron needs.
Parsley is also a concentrated source of iron. Iron helps transport oxygen to cells where it’s used to produce energy. Your immune system also relies on iron to function normally. Like other foods of plant origin, parsley contains non-heme iron. Although this kind of iron accounts for most of the iron in the diet, it’s not as readily available as heme iron, the type found in animal tissue. Vitamin C, which parsley contains, significantly boosts the amount of non-heme iron our body is able to absorb.
5. Chili peppers
You’ll also increase your iron intake by eating green chili peppers. Each cup of chilies provides 10 % of the daily recommended iron intake for women and 23 percent for men. Iron plays a role in healthy circulation — iron supports red blood cell function and prevents chronic high blood pressure that would increase your risk of cardiovascular disease. Iron also helps your good metabolism and your cells to produce energy.
6. Chick peas (garbanzo beans)
Chickpeas (garbanzo beans) are high in iron (as well as protein and calcium) and a half cup will provide 6.3 mg of iron. You will need to sprout them first, which is an easy process. You can put sprouted chickpeas in salads or even make a raw hummus! Your hummus recipe will also need sesame tahini too, so you will have yourself a super iron-rich meal (also rich in and protein and calcium).