How to Obtain Enough Iron Without Eating Meat

Many of were raised eating meat at least in one meal every day. Grandma told us that we needed to eat meat to get enough iron in our diet. Iron seems to be one of the main concerns of all vegetarians, whether they intake sufficient amount in their diets for 1 day or not. For adults, the recommended daily dosage of iron is between 8 and 27 mg, according to The National Institutes of Health.

Adult men shouldn’t worry about the amount of iron consisted in their diets, as they find the lowest amounts sufficient. Pregnant (or breastfeeding) and older women, on the other hand, need to implement significantly higher amounts of iron in their diets.

Throughout the years, meat was considered to be the richest main source of iron, so vegans are forced to look for a substitute for iron in vegetables.

However, there is a host of iron-rich vegetables that are tasty and easy to prepare too, but we’ll narrow the search down for you, to make your choice easier. Besides the fact that you’re contributing to your health, you’re also taking a step towards stopping animal cruelty in the food industry!

14 Veggies with High Content of Iron

1. Spinach

Popeye’s favorite iron booster. Leafy, dark greens loaded with tons of iron. Three cups of spinach contain 18mg of iron, more than an 8 oz steak. Correspondingly, 1 spinach salad is enough to meet the body’s daily amount requirement.

2. Broccoli

Not only a great source of iron but also a variety of other essential nutrients like vitamin C, vitamin K, and magnesium. Moreover, vitamin C improves the body’s absorption ability and will for iron.

3. Lentils

Adding 1 cup of lentils in a soup or a salad provides the body with more iron than an 8 oz steak!  Also, they are stuffed with proteins, dietary fibers, and potassium.

4. Kale

3 cups of kale contain 3.6 mg iron. Because of this, kale helps the body to ward off fatigue and anemia. If you don’t like it raw, you can add it to your soup, salad or burger.

5. Bok Choy

1 cup of Bok Choy carries 1.8 mg of iron. You can either sauté it or steam it, your choice.  A delicious cabbage with Chinese origins, loaded with vitamin A.

6. Baked Potato

One large, baked potato is x3 times the iron of 3 oz chicken serving. Make a delicious combination with steamed broccoli, a bit of melted cheese and top it with yogurt.

7. Sesame seeds

1 tbsp of sesame seeds holds 1.3 mg iron and can be easily implemented into any diet. You can use it as a dressing, mix them in salsa or any sauce, or sprinkle them over your salad.

8. Cashews

Not only are they very rich in proteins like other nuts, but also exclusively pumped with iron. ½ a cup of cashews contains 4 gr of iron!

9. Soybeans

Similar to cashews, the soybeans are a rich source of both iron and protein. In fact, they are on the Top 20 highest in protein veggie food list.

1 cup of soybeans contains 8-9 mg iron.

10. Chickpeas

A crunchy snack when roasted in olive oil, a savory dish when mixed with feta, cucumber, and tomatoes. Anyway, 1 cup of chickpeas provides 4.7 mg iron, which is more than a ½ of the recommended daily intake for adult males.

11. Dark Chocolate

Not only sweet but beneficial as well. The dark chocolate reduces anxiety, promotes healthier teeth and skin and boosts the iron intake in the body.

1 oz of dark chocolate contains 2-3 mg iron, which is the equivalent of 1oz of beef.

12. Swiss Chard

1 cup of swiss chards holds 4mg of iron, which is more than a 6 oz hamburger. Also, is a major source of essential nutrients such as folates, omega-3 acids and vitamins K, A, and C.

13. Tofu

½ a cup of Tofu has 3 mg iron. There are a variety of different usages of Tofu, you’ll need to find your preferable one and enjoy its’ benefits.

14. Kidney Beans

1 cup of kidneys contains 3-4 mg iron. The vegetarian chili superstar, a healthy ingredient often used with other meat options.

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