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8 Iron-Rich Foods (Red Meat NOT Included!)

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Tired, lethargic, and low on energy? It might be anemia. If you’ve ever been diagnosed with anemia, it’s crucial to up your intake of iron. Anemic or not, it’s critical to have a balanced diet rich in iron.

When people think iron-rich foods, they often think red meat. While red meat is a great source of iron, there are actually numerous other delicious foods that are a good source of iron.

Some foods that are iron-rich are often things you wouldn’t necessarily expect. Try adding one of these eight foods into your diet to keep you feeling healthy and energized all day long.

Dark, Leafy Greens: Kale, spinach, collard greens, and broccoli are all delicious and nutritious sources of iron and a critical addition to any healthy diet.

Dried Fruits: The perfect balanced and filling pop-in-your-mouth snack, dried fruits are not only high in fiber, they’re also high in iron. Choose from prunes, apricots, and raisins.

Beans: From lentils and chickpeas to soybeans and navy beans, add beans to your favorite salad and soup recipes to ensure you’re getting your daily dose of iron.

Cereal: Cereal is a great way to start your day with a dose of iron. Stick with brands that say they are iron-enriched and that are also low in sugar and high in fiber.

Chocolate: Pure cocoa powder and dark chocolate both provide a healthy dose of iron.

Shellfish: Clams, oysters, and mussels enjoyed raw, baked, steamed, or fried, shellfish are a rich source of iron. Clams provide the highest levels of iron with oysters coming in second and mussels in third.

Roasted Pumpkin or Squash Seeds: Easily made by roasting or drying seeds from your favorite squash, a handful of seeds are a great source of iron.

Tahini: A key ingredient of hummus and many Mediterranean dishes, tahini provides a healthy dose of iron in every serving.


Iron-Rich Foods. WebMD. Retrieved Feb. 17, 2012.

Iron Rich Foods. American Red Cross. Retrieved Feb. 17, 2012.

Reviewed February 21, 2012
by Michele Blacksberg RN
Edited by Jody Smith

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