March 8, 2012

Anemic--Low Iron? Where to start?

Ever wondered how to get iron in besides eating meat and taking iron supplements that don't work and make you constipated? Most women should get 18mg iron each day. But for us pregnant women we should get 30-60mg (or in my anemic case 70mg).
Well, my midwife gave me a list of iron foods, which includes whole grains, meats, vegetables/fruits, lentils, etc. (I never realized just eating whole grains can contribute as much as it does.)  Which I will put another list I found online at the end of this post (so I don't have to type of the list she gave me, though I really like it.

She also gave me these three things (which she told me would help since I have anemia):

1. Chlorophyll (whole food): 1T/day (but she told me 1/4 c now, while I'm pregnant, since I'm so low...otherwise regularly 1 T is fine. Just find it at a natural foods isle by the probiotics most likely. Mine was at smiths, but if not there, then a local health/nutrition store would for sure have it).

To read my post about this great supplement, click here:
2. Ferum Phosphate - a homeopathic supplement which helps carry the oxygen (i use one a day by just dissolving it under my tongue atleast 15 mins before and after I drink anything. And I got it at a nutrition store in the homeopathic isle--not all health food stores have homeopathics.)

3. Iron Supplement - if you have one already, most likely it's iron sulfate (which she says is silly, because it absorbs like 1% and is the most typical people pick up, unless they specifically look for the more beneficial irons). So look for Ferrous Fumerate or Ferrous Glyconate instead --which are organic iron and therefore is absorbed much better than ferrous sulphate.
In addition, a good supplement will also include Bcomplex and vitamin C, which aid iron absorbtion (but you can always take those separately, but at the same time, if you already have those supplements in your cabinet). And don't take with dairy, which doesn't aid iron absorption.


Iron Rich Vegetables (1/2 cup cooked),

Iron Value in mg

Sea vegetables = 18.1- 42.0
Swiss chard = 2
Turnip greens = 1.6
Sweet potatoes, canned = 1.7
Turnip greens = 1.6
Pumpkin, cooked = 1.7
Potato, baked with skin = 1.7
Turnip greens = 1.6
Watermelon, 1/8 medium = 0.5
Prune juice, 4 oz = 1.5
Spinach cooked = 1.5
Beet greens cooked = 1.4
Potato, 1 large = 1.4
Bok choy cooked = 0.7
Peas, cooked = 0.65
Green beans, cooked = 0.60
Tomato juice = 0.6
Broccoli, cooked = 0.55

High Iron Legumes(1/2 cup cooked)

Iron Value in mg

Lentils = 3.2
Black eye beans = 2.6
Navy beans = 2.5
Pinto beans = 2.2
Lima beans = 2.2
Kidney beans Rajmah = 1.5
Chickpeas (200 g) = 6.2

High Iron Soy foods

(1/2 cup cooked)
Iron Value in mg
Tofu = 6.6
Soybeans = 4.4
Tempeh = 1.8
Soy milk = 0.9

High Iron Nuts & Seeds

(2 Tablespoon)
Iron Value in mg
Pumpkin seeds = 2.5
Figs, dried, 5 = 2.0
Dried apricot, 5 = 1.6
Almond, 1/4 cup = 1.3
Tahini = 1.2
Sesame = 1.2
Sunflower seeds = 1.2
Cashew nuts = 1.0

High Iron Breads, Cereals and grains

Value in mg
Bran flakes, 1 cup = 11.0
Oatmeal, 1 packet = 6.3
Pasta, 1 cup, cooked = 1.7
Semolina, 1/2 cup cooked = 5.5
Wheat germ, 2 tablespoon = 1.2
Whole wheat bread, 1 slice = 0.9
White bread, 1 slice = 0.7

*I'm no doctor, but this information was very helpful and I hope it can help broaden your understanding of what else is available to you if you're anemic.

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