iron foods for vegetarians and non-vegetarians

The 25 Best High-Iron Foods for Pregnancy & Lactation

According to the many health experts, it is good to consume High-Iron Foods for Pregnancy & Lactation. During pregnancy many women develop the condition called iron deficiency or iron deficiency anemia. It is obvious because of the increased demand of iron by woman’s body.

Symptoms of Low Iron

If you are experiencing excessive tiredness, dizziness and feeling weak then these all are indicating towards low level of iron. During pregnancy most of the females have these in common. And sometime they also complaint shortness of breath. But to confirm, they are always suggested to have their iron levels tested.

Though in most cases gynecologists prescribe Prenatal multivitamins, which complete the daily requirement of iron in pregnant women. But eating iron-rich foods, in addition, can assist to prevent and/or fight against Low level of Iron or Anemia during pregnancy. Not only during pregnancy but only after having a baby these foods can help you in maintaining level of Iron in your body.

Need of Iron Rich Foods

Pregnancy is the state, when a women must have a well-balanced diet with full of nutrients. In the span of pregnancy requirement of nutrients in the body gets doubled. Mostly Iron and Folic Acid are the most important sbstances among all.

But our body is incapable to produce Iron as its own. So, we have to rely on food and supplements to fulfill the daily need of iron.

Iron is important in creation of extra red blood cells. Red blood cells further essential for carrying oxygen to fetus’s organ. Also it plays a vital role in brain development.

Mainly during fourth to nine months it is must to maintain a good level of Iron. That’s why incorporating foods fortified with iron, is significant for expecting mother and her baby.

Recommended Amount of Iron

It is recommended that a pregnant lady should have at least 27mg (milligrams) of Iron daily. But on the other hand this requirement is hard to complete by relying on foods solely. That’s why supplements are suggested to add daily with a well-balanced diet.

Supplements can help in completely the daily need of Iron level in an expecting Mother. But we can not deny the fact that some of these supplements may cause some intestinal issues.

Types of High-Iron Foods

According to the sources of Iron, the types of Iron mainly can be divided into two

  • Heme
  • Non-Heme

Heme based Iron foods are the foods which come under the non-vegetation type food like meat, whereas the foods which can be derived from vegetations (plants) are called Non-Heme based Iron Foods.

Our body mainly use the Heme based Iron more efficiently than Non-Heme Based Iron.

The 25 Best High-Iron Foods for Pregnancy & Lactation

According to the types of Iron, sources of Iron-Rich foods are as follow:

Non-Heme sources (Vegetarian sources)

  • Leafy Greens – e.g. Spinach, Kale, methi (fenugreek)
  • Beets
  • Dried Seeds and Nuts- e.g. Raisins, Figs, Prunes etc
  • Broccoli, Beans, Potatoes, Peas.
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Whole Grains, Whole grain Bread
  • Fortified cereals, Oatmeal
  • Tofu

Heme sources (Non-Vegetarian sources)

  • Eggs
  • Red Meat
  • Chicken
  • Sea Foods- e.g. Oysters, Tuna, mackerel, trout, bass

How to Increase Iron level (Absorption) in Food

It is the fact that our body absorbs Heme (animal sources) iron far better than Non-Heme (plant sources) iron. Despite the fact, Vegetarien people still can fulfill the need of body’d ddaily requirement of iron without adding Non-veg foods in their meals. All they have to do to keep some points in their mind.

  • It is found in studies that if you cook food in cast iron utensils then it may increase the level of Iron in your food up to 80%.
  • Avoiding High-Iron foods intake, with the the food rich in calcium or calcium supplements, can further assist in the absorption of iron in the body.
  • Eating Vitamin C-Rich food with High-Iron foods, can help to enhance the absorption of Non-Heme Iron in your body.

Supplements for Iron

If you are thinking about adding Iron supplements during pregnancy then you must consult with your doctor or gynecologists properly. As we have mentioned above that adding supplement can have some side effects. These side effects include disturbed bowel moments, constipation etc. Changes in dosage and type of supplement can help to combat the situation up to a great level.

Final Words

It is always beneficial to introduce foods which are high in Iron in your diet if you are mother-to-be or lactating mother. But it is always suggested to consult with your doctor before doing any changes in your daily diet as health conditiones vary from person to person.

We hope this article helped you to understand the need of High-Iron food for our body and different sources of Iron available which can be incorporated in your diet easily.

Also Read: 5 Low carbs Vegetables

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