Iron Rich Foods
and Heme Iron

Iron rich foods can come from many food sources.  However, heme iron can only come from animal foods and seafood.

Heme iron is where you will get the most health benefits of iron because heme iron is much better absorbed than the iron that comes from plant foods. 

And the health benefits of iron make it such an important element to your health, that you should include a wide variety of iron rich foods that come with heme iron.

As iron rich foods that do not contain heme iron will need to be eaten in a certain way in order to get a sufficient amount of the health benefits of iron.

Health Benefits of Iron

  • Involved in Red Blood Cell formation
  • Involved with Carrying Oxygen to cells
  • Essential to Hemoglobin formation
  • Involved with Energy Metabolism
  • Helps Build Resistance to Stress
  • Strengthens your Immune System
  • Helps increase Work Capacity
  • Vital to Various Enzyme Systems
  • Vital to Muscle Function
  • Helps with Restless Leg Syndrome
  • Vital for Brain Development & Concentration
  • Helps regulate Body Temperature
  • Involved with Neurotransmitter Synthesis
  • Helps to increase a Restful Sleep
  • Helps with Fatigue and Your Mood
  • Helps with Headaches & Dizziness
  • Helps with Brittle & Ridged Nails

What is Iron?

Iron is a vital mineral that your body needs because it is involved with the transportation of oxygen to your cells.  Iron is a mineral that comes in two forms - heme iron or non-heme iron.

This mineral is also needed for the formation of healthy red blood cells.

Iron is the central part of hemoglobin which is responsible for carrying oxygen to your cells.

And the adult human body contains somewhere in the range of 3 to 5 grams of iron.

Iron Deficiency Symptoms

Iron Deficiency Symptoms are some of the most common problems in the world. Woman and children seem to be the most susceptible to having this type of deficiency.

Approximately 65% or more is circulating in your blood while most of the rest gets stored for future use.

What is Iron - Heme and Non-Heme?


Heme iron is readily available for absorption.  Heme iron is found in food sources which include seafood, pork, beef, poultry, lamb, and organ meats.

This type of iron makes up about 40% or more of the muscle tissue in these foods and the rest will be in the non-heme form.

Non-heme iron will be found in both animal and in plant foods which include fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, grains, and legumes.

Non-heme iron will make up all of the iron found in plant foods. 

And this type of iron is not as well absorbed by the human body.

Non-heme iron will be present as ferric iron and will have to be reduced to ferrous iron in order to be absorbed. 


Supplemental Sources of Iron

Supplemental sources of iron can include taking a natural product such as black strap molasses to help fill your daily iron needs.

And heme iron will already be in the form of ferrous iron.

Iron Rich Foods

Wild Caught Seafood - Clams, Oysters, Mussels, Queen Crab, Black & Red Caviar

Wild Caught Fish - Sardines, Mackerel

Organic Chocolate - Chocolate Nibs, Cacao Powder, Dark Chocolate

Sustainable Organ Meats - Grass Fed Beef Liver, Grass Fed Beef Heart, Grass Fed Beef Kidney, Goose Liver

Sustainable Meats - Grass Fed Beef, Grass Fed Lamb, Buffalo, Dark Meat Poultry, Venison

Organic Nuts - Pistachio Nuts, Hazelnuts, Almonds

Organic Seeds - Pumpkin Seeds, Sesame Seeds

Grains & Pseudo Grains - Teff, Whole Wheat, Quinoa, Barley

Organic Fruits - Raisins, Dried Peaches, Dried Apricots, Dried Currants, Passion Fruit, Tamarind, Dried Figs

Organic Legumes - Soybeans, Cashews, Lentils, Black Beans, Garbanzo Beans, Black-Eyed Peas, Kidney Beans

Organic Vegetables - Artichokes, Potatoes, Cooked Spinach, Cooked Collard Greens, Cooked Swiss Chard, Green Peas, Mushrooms

Misc. - Blackstrap Molasses, Curry Powder, Parsley, Paprika, Maca Root Powder

These are some of the best heme iron and non-heme iron rich foods that you can easily include in your diet every day!

A variety of iron rich foods is probably the best way to ensure that you'll receive the most health benefits of iron.

Plant based iron rich foods that contain non-heme iron will be more easily absorbed by your body if you consume vitamin C along with your meals and some heme iron foods.

And iron rich foods like raw clams can give you up to 32 mg. of iron per 1 cup serving which exceeds the RDA for iron for adults by approximately 2 to 3 times.


Go to Iron Deficiency Symptoms

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