With the multitude of fast foods, snack foods, prepackaged foods, and amazingly depleted foodstuffs, the United States today ranks second in deaths caused by a deficiency in the mineral iron. In fact, twenty percent of childbearing women in the United States have a shortage of this most vital mineral. Proper amounts of iron can benefit mothers and others greatly in nearly every aspect of bodily health–from absorbing more oxygen, making breathing easier, to preventing preterm labor and underweight newborns. Read on to find how you can include more healthy foods with iron in your day-to-day diet.
One source of iron can be found in many lean red meats, liver, and seafood. Chicken giblets are also excellent sources of the mineral; however, the taste for these foods must be acquired, and most do not care to begin eating animal organs. Other options for those inclined are available.
The plant kingdom is full of sources that can be eaten by an average individual and still be an amazing source of iron. In fact, iron derived from plant sources is more easily assimilated by your body, and can be more easily used for everyday necessities. While many beans and whole grains are an excellent source, the best iron rich foods are actually vegetables. The dark green leafy kind can supply your body with an excellent amount of iron. Simply steam a bunch of washed spinach to have as a side dish at dinner. Or stir fry some broccoli to have with your fried rice. If you are hesitant about eating these leafy plants, you can always blend them together to make a “green drink”. Do not worry–a bright green drink does not need to be disgusting. In fact, green drinks are an excellent way to pack the greens into a glass for a delicious pre-breakfast drink. Try blending collard greens, kale, spinach, or mustard greens with a couple bananas, a carton of strawberries, a bit of honey, a dash of cinnamon, and a few ice cubes. This combination makes a delicious morning smoothie that is rich in iron and many other minerals necessary for its assimilation. Even your children will love it. As you experiment with different combinations, you will find family favorites that every one can enjoy.
With plenty of iron rich foods available to the average American, iron deficiency should not be near the problem it is in our country. But by slowly eliminating the empty, worthless foods with wholesome nutrition full of health and vitality, we can improve our own health and contribute to a healthier population. Adding a side dish of beans or green vegetables is a simple matter when preparing a meal. Blending together a quick smoothie with whole fruits and veggies is definitely faster than eggs and toast. There are infinite ways to ensure that your family is getting the iron they need.