Hemoglobin is an extremely essential protein for the human body mainly as it carries the oxygen to different parts of the body. It is hence essential that we maintain its level in the body. And Iron is an important element that combines with the protein allowing it the potential to carry oxygen.
The Importance of Iron in Health
Iron is an important nutrient, without which life could not exist. Iron is an essential mineral, which forms the main component of the blood called, haemoglobin. Haemoglobin is the element found in red blood cells, which gives blood it's red colour. It is needed to transport water and oxygen throughout the body to the various organs. Deficiency in haemoglobin means there are not enough of these helpers in the blood to distribute oxygen, which is why people lacking in iron feel tired and worn out all the time.
It is important to maintain healthy levels of iron in your blood stream for your body to function properly. If you are found to be deficient in iron, with time and dedication, you can easily . It takes 4 - 6 weeks to for blood to regenerate and replenish itself, so do not expect overnight results. Give yourself at least 1 - 2 months of regular intake of iron rich foods to reclaim healthy iron levels.
Iron deficiency can affect your life adversely and can lead to serious health problems.
Tiredness all the time
Slow physical and mental development in children
Poor performance in school for children
Inflamed tongue (Glossitis)
Problems in regulating proper body temperature
Poor immune system
Signs of low hemoglobin include stomach upset, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, blood, fever and constipation, hair loss, tiredness and headaches. Low iron intake can also lead to anaemia.
Who needs iron?
People who are susceptible to low haemoglobin levels may include:
- pregnant women
- menstruating women
- growing children
- those recovering from illnesses
Hemoglobin also plays an important role in maintaining healthy skin, hair and body. Iron supplements should be consumed if the hemoglobin levels are too low.
People should ensure they obtain enough iron content from natural sources so that they can rebuild their haemoglobin levels in blood. Haemoglobin is a building block of blood and is very important, as we have seen above.
Daily recommended dietary intake
Women above 19 to 50: 18 mg
Men above 19: 8 mg
Following are few ingredients that can boost your iron intake; just add these healthy foods rich in iron to prevent diseases related iron deficiency.
Hemoglobin Rich Foods
To make it very clear first that Hemoglobin is formed in the human body and when we say hemoglobin rich food, we are speaking of sources that provide all the elements necessary for hemoglobin formation.
Vegetables like beetroot and spinach, which is easily available in market, helps in the formation of hemoglobin. This helps to boost the level of blood count.
Fruits are another great source of iron. Fruits contain antioxidants, vitamins, minerals along with iron, which is very useful for the human body. The fruits rich in iron are watermelons, raisins, grapefruits, tomatoes, apples, bananas, oranges, strawberries and avocados.
Dairy product such as milk, buttermilk, paneer, curd and cheese are good sources of hemoglobin. Food items like egg and hamburger meat are also good sources of hemoglobin.
Spices like thyme, cumin seed, oregano, basil, cinnamon and sage are rich sources of iron. Therefore, don’t forget to include these spices in your diet.
Breads, pasta and cereals are primary sources of iron. Grains like pearled barley, wheat flour, rice, long-grain brown rice, forfeited cereals and breads are also good sources of iron. Whole grains are the best sources of fiber as well.
Dried fruits like dried apricots, prunes, dates and raisins are excellent sources of haemoglobin. The high iron content in the dried fruit helps forming the red pigment in the blood.
Legumes like chickpeas, dried beans, limas, pintos, kidney, navy or white beans contain good amount of iron. Pumpkins and squash seeds help to increase the hemoglobin level in the blood.
Seafood is an excellent source of hemoglobin. Various varieties of seafood like tuna, clams, catfish, salmon, oysters and sardines are good sources of hemoglobin.
Meat is the richest source of hemoglobin. Meat also contains vitamin B-12, which helps to maintain the normal iron level in the body. Red meat is the best source of hemoglobin.
Egg yolks are another very rich source of hemoglobin. Egg yolks are rich in iron and helps in the production of hemoglobin.
Here is a good news for chocolate lovers. Chocolates and cocoa powder can considerably increase the hemoglobin levels.
Few Facts about Hemoglobin:
Avoid using too much of iron supplements.
Excessive intake of iron can cause stomach upset, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, blood, fever and constipation.
Iron in high doses can lead to iron poisoning and toxin production in the body.
Consume iron rich food during post menstrual period and pregnancy.
Women have lower iron than men.
Girls between the ages of 14-18 should consume at least 15 mg of iron daily.
Iron helps to increase the body’s immune system.
Try to include iron rich foods in the diet to maintain a good level of hemoglobin. Hope you like the article. Don’t forget to leave us a comment.