Increase your iron intake naturally

  • 1 Minute Read
Martha M. Henze
Martha M. Henze, MPH, MS, RDN - Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and Global Public Health Epidemiologist

Did you know that iron is the most common nutrient deficiency in the world? Learn how to increase iron intake naturally.

Iron Intake

Iron - the most common nutrient deficiency in the world

Even though much of the trending nutrition talk these days is about probiotics, fasting, protein, and plant-based eating, the most common, severe, and important nutrient deficiency in the world is iron. Iron is a mineral that is needed to carry oxygen throughout the body.

Who is most at risk of iron deficiency?

Even though everyone is at risk for iron-deficiency anemia, the following groups are at the greatest risk:

What are the most common symptoms of iron deficiency?

Note: These symptoms are also common for other health issues. It is essential to confirm iron deficiency anemia through diagnosis by a blood test through your healthcare provider.

Two quick and easy tips to increase your iron intake

1. Focus on eating both animal and plant iron sources.

Some of the best animal sources of iron are:

Some of the best plant sources of iron are:

2. Eat iron-rich foods and vitamin C-rich foods together.

Your body absorbs the iron from animal sources 2 to 3 times better than from plant sources. However, you can increase iron absorption from plant sources in two ways. If you eat meat, fish, or poultry in the same meal as plant sources of iron, the percentage of iron absorbed from the plant source increases. Also, if you eat or drink a vitamin C-rich food at the same meal, you can increase the iron absorption from the plant source.

For example:

These tips can both help prevent and treat iron-deficiency anemia.

Related content

How much vitamin C do you need in a day? Here's what you need to know
6 "Supplemental" reasons the importance of vitamin B12 shouldn't be underestimated

This content was reviewed and updated by Brenda Braslow, MS, RDN, LDN, CDCES on April 28, 2022.

Still new to MyNetDiary? Learn more today by downloading the app for FREE.

May 6, 2022
Disclaimer: The information provided here does not constitute medical advice. If you are seeking medical advice, please visit your healthcare provider or medical professional.

Start Your Free
Food Diary Today

Sign up Devices