Iron Rich Fruits For a Plant-Based Diet

iron rich fruits include dried fruits

Finding iron-rich fruits will be easy once you become familiar with the fruits that contain iron. Unfortunately, there aren’t many fruits that have a high amount of iron. That’s why it’s extremely important that you eat a well-balanced diet mixed with fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes.

What Is Iron?

Iron is a nutrient derived from the foods that we eat. There are two types of iron that we can receive through our diet: heme and non-heme. Heme comes from animal products and non-heme comes from plant-based foods.

Although heme is better absorbed by the body, it also comes with cholesterol, saturated fats, antibiotics, hormones, and steroids.

To increase plant-based iron absorption, include vitamin c with your nonheme iron-rich foods. For example, add tomatoes to your spinach salad or strawberries in your green smoothie to get the greatest amount of absorption.

Around two-thirds of the iron found in the body is located within the hemoglobin, the protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen to the cells. According to the World Health Organization, 30% of people suffer from iron-deficient caused anemia. [1]

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How Much Iron Do You Need?

The recommended daily intake of males aged 19-50 is 8 milligrams per day of iron. For women, the RDI is higher at 18 milligrams per day. However, after age 51 women only need to get 8 milligrams of iron per day.

Children are a bit different. A baby between 7–12 months of age need 11 milligrams of iron per day. Then, ages 1–3 years should get 7 milligrams. Once kids reach age 4, they’ll need 10 milligrams a day until they hit the age of 8. After that, they need a normal amount of 8 milligrams per day. [2]

Iron Rich Fruits

Raisins

1.6 mg per 1/2 cup

Raisins are tasty treats! In addition to having iron, they also have a good amount of fiber (3.3 grams per 1/2 cup). This means they can help aid digestion and regulate bowel movements.

Not only that, but raisins also have antioxidants within them. Antioxidants are wonderful substances that fight the aging process and reduces the risk of diseases by neutralizing free radicals. In other words, antioxidants are something you want in your life.

As if you needed any more reasons to consume this yummy snack, a study published in 2009 states that raisins had a positive impact on oral health.

Overall, this is definitely a food you want to add to your shopping list.

Apricots

.9 mg per 1/4 cup

Apricots offer your body Vitamin A, Vitamin E, and Vitamin C. The first two vitamins are known to promote eye health. Vitamin A helps to prevent night blindness and Vitamin E protects your eyes from the damage of free radicals. [3]

Also, Vitamin C can help with skin health since it helps to neutralize free radicals and protects against UV damage.

Apricots contain a lot of soluble fiber (a fiber that dissolves while in water). This fiber is great in maintaining healthy blood sugar and cholesterol levels. [4, 5]

Plus, this fruit is high in antioxidants. What’s not to love?

Related: Calcium Rich Fruits For A Plant-Based Diet

Dried Apricots

3.5 mg per 1 cup

We aren’t done with apricots just yet! There’s another tasty way to enjoy this delicious fruit!

Dried apricots offer so many wonderful nutrients! They’re really high in Vitamin A, fiber, potassium, and phosphorus.

Since I just went through all the great benefits of apricots, I won’t do it again. But yes! This is certainly a fruit you should add to your household if you haven’t already.

prunes are an iron rich fruit

Prunes

2.4 mg per 1/2 cup

One thing that’s widely known about prunes is their ability to relieve constipation. That’s because these fruits pack a powerful fiber punch. However, there’s another substance within prunes that help to regulate bowel function. It’s called sorbitol and it’s found both in prunes and prune juice. [5]

Just like most fruits, prunes are high in antioxidants. Yet, they’re high in polyphenol antioxidants. These antioxidants lower the risk of diabetes and heart disease and promote bone health. [6]

Prunes may reduce the risk for bone-related disease and even reverse the damage that’s already been done by various bone diseases! [7]

On top of all that, prunes can help promote a healthy heart. This is probably due to the fact that they’re high in potassium, fiber, and antioxidants.

Sundried Tomatoes

2.5 mg per 1/2 cup

By consuming a half cup of sundried tomatoes, you will have already reached 14% of your RDI for iron. They also have a high amount of Vitamin C which helps your body absorb the iron you’re consuming.

Since sundried tomatoes contain a good amount of fiber, they can help lower your LDL cholesterol levels and reduce your risk of heart-related illnesses.

Plus, there are 4 grams of protein in this serving size. Overall, sundried tomatoes are a well-balanced fruit that can help you reach your iron goals and others as well.

iron rich fruits include peaches

Peach

.4 mg per 1 medium fruit

One of my favorite fruits of all time is a peach. Although all fruits are tasty, I fell in love with peaches when I was pregnant and loved them ever since. That’s why I feel like peaches will make a quick and easy way to get nutrients into the body.

Peaches contain Vitamin E, Vitamin C, Vitamin, K, and Vitamin A. They also have other minerals within them such as fiber, potassium, phosphorus, copper, and manganese.

Peaches may health with digestion health, the prevention of heart-related illnesses, the prevention of certain cancers, skin health, boost the immune system, and reduce allergy symptoms. [8]

Overall, this is a wonderful fruit and is extremely easy to add to your daily diet. Did I mention they’re delicious?

Conclusion

There may not be iron-rich fruits, but it’s important to remember that you want to enjoy a well-balanced diet. There are many other foods out there that contain a larger amount of iron that you may want to consider eating if you’re worried about your iron intake.

For example:

  • 1 ounce of dark chocolate contains 3.9 milligrams of iron.
  • Just two tablespoons of pumpkin seeds have 2.5 milligrams.
  • A half cup of cooked soybeans has 4.4 milligrams of iron.

References:

  1. https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/43894/9789241596657_eng.pdf;jsessionid=21EA139FCBA3B39B3DCA374AB92415B9?sequence=1
  2. https://kidshealth.org/en/parents/iron.html
  3. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/apricots-benefits#section3
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22401879
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23609775
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4291444/
  7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19274852

Iron Rich Fruits For A Plant

Iron rich fruits

Thanks for sharing!

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