Iron is a mineral that is very important for human health. All of your cells contain some iron, but most of the iron in your body is in your red blood cells. Red blood cells transport oxygen from your lungs to the organs and tissues throughout your body. Vitamin C helps the body absorb iron, captures non-heme iron, and converts it into a more absorbable form called heme iron.
Iron is vital for treating anemia, one of the most common nutritional deficiencies in the world. Anemia results when the level of hemoglobin is lower than normal ranges. Because red blood cells carry oxygen to the body’s tissues.
The primary function of iron is to form hemoglobin, a red protein whose role is to transport oxygen in the blood. The normal level of hemoglobin prevents anemia, which is also known as iron deficiency anemia.
Improves Muscle Strength
Muscle weakness is associated with low iron. Humans need iron to make myoglobin in muscles. Myoglobin is a protein like hemoglobin. Adequate levels of iron help provide the necessary oxygen for muscle contraction and muscle strength.
Iron plays a vital role in strengthening the immune system. It promotes HB level, which provides oxygen to damaged cells, tissues, and organs. Iron in immunity is necessary for immune cell proliferation and maturation, particularly lymphocytes.
Iron deficiency causes cognitive levels to decrease. When iron levels in the blood decrease, concentration and attentiveness is affected almost immediately. Because of its role in oxidative metabolism and because it is a cofactor in the synthesis of neurotransmitters.
Low iron is associated with easily bruise and frequently suffering from low iron or an iron deficiency. Our body needs iron to keep blood cells healthy. If blood cells aren’t healthy, the body won’t get the oxygen that it needs to function.
RDA for Iron
Adequate intake (AI) of iron for infants 6 months of age and less is 0.27 mg/day. For older infants and children, the recommended daily allowances (RDAs) for iron are Infants 7 to 12 months, 11 mg/day; children 1 to 3 years, 7 mg/day; 4 to 8 years, 10 mg/day; 9 to 13 years, 8 mg/day; boys 14 to 18 years, 11 mg/day; girls 14 to 18 years, 15 mg/day. For adults, the RDA for iron is 8 mg/day for men ages 19 and older and women ages 51 and older. For women 19 to 50 years, the RDA is 18 mg/day. For pregnant women, the RDA is 27 mg/day. For breastfeeding women, the RDA is 10 mg/day for ages 14 to 18 years and 9 mg/day for ages 19 to 50.
Iron sources, including meat, fish, and poultry, contain the most easily absorbed dietary iron form, called heme iron. Egg yolks also contain some heme iron. People who eat little or no meat must take in more iron from whole grains, leafy greens, and other iron-rich plant foods.
Cumin-spiced beef skewers with tahini cauliflower
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped fresh
- 800g beef rump steak, trimmed, cut into 2cm pieces
- Lebanese bread, to serve
- Tomato, diced, to serve
- 1/4 cup fresh coriander leaves
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 head cauliflower cut into small florets
- 1/3 cup tahini
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 1/4 cup water, boiling
- Combine garlic, lemon juice, cumin, olive oil, and parsley in a large glass or ceramic bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Add beef. Toss to coat. Thread beef evenly onto 8 metal skewers (see note). Cover. Marinate in the fridge for 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, make Tahini cauliflower: Preheat oven to 220C/200C fan forced. Line a baking tray with baking paper: place oil, cumin, and salt in a large bowl. Stir well to combine. Add cauliflower. Toss well to coat. Place cauliflower, in a single layer, on the prepared tray—Bake for 25 minutes or until golden and tender.
- Meanwhile, heat a large non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat. Cook skewers, turning, for 4 minutes for medium or until browned and cooked to your liking.
- Combine tahini, lemon juice, and boiling water in a heatproof bowl. Stir until smooth. Transfer cauliflower to a serving dish. Drizzle with tahini dressing. Serve skewers with cauliflower, Lebanese bread, and diced tomato, sprinkled with coriander.
- Fat 5g
- Fiber 8g
- Protein 57g
- Fiber 18%
- Sodium 14%
- Iron 25%
- Carbs 55g
- Jáuregui-lobera I. Iron deficiency and cognitive functions. Neuropsychiatr Dis Treat. 2014;10:2087-95. doi:10.2147/NDT.S72491
- Cherayil BJ. The role of iron in the immune response to bacterial infection. Immunol Res. 2011;50(1):1–9. doi:10.1007/s12026-010-8199-1
- Stugiewicz M, Tkaczyszyn M, Kasztura M, Banasiak W, Ponikowski P, Jankowska EA. The influence of iron deficiency on the functioning of skeletal muscles: experimental evidence and clinical implications. Eur J Heart Fail. 2016;18(7):762-73. doi:10.1002/ejhf.467
- National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Iron-Deficiency Anemia.