High Iron Food List: Keeping Yourself Healthy Through Diet

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High Iron Food List: What You Need to Know about Iron and Food

Iron is an essential nutrient. It keeps your circulatory system healthy, allows your blood to carry oxygen and nutrients to every cell in your body, and helps your tissues repair themselves. It’s important to get enough iron in your diet, and eating the right foods can help you do that. However, if you’ve been diagnosed with anemia, a form of iron deficiency, eating foods high in iron, while it can help, may not be enough. Always consult your doctor before making major dietary changes. The information provided in this article is not intended to replace the advice of a skilled medical professional.

Meats and Eggs

Meat is a good source of iron. While liver is famously rich in iron, if you don’t like how it tastes, don’t worry. Iron is also found in other, more palatable foods. These include:

  • Turkey (dark meat)
  • Beef
  • Pork
  • Eggs

3-oz of dark turkey provides 11 percent of the daily value for iron, 3-oz of ground beef give you 12 percent, 3-oz of cooked pork give you 6 percent, and one egg provides 3 percent. These foods also provide valuable protein, which is important for muscle health and, since the body processes it slowly, also helps you maintain a sense of fullness and keep your weight under control.

Fish and Seafood

Fish and seafood are another tasty source of iron. Consider adding these gifts from the sea to your diet:

  • Clams
  • Oysters
  • Shrimp
  • Trout

3-oz of clams, more than enough for a bowl of clam chowder provide 40 percent of the daily value for iron. Oysters rival clams, with 3-oz steamed oysters providing 36 percent of the daily value. If you don’t like muscles, 3-oz of shrimp give you 6 percent, and 3-oz trout gives you 13 percent. Trout is a particularly good choice, it like other cold-water fatty fish, is a good source of heart-healthy Omega 3 fatty acids.

Green Leafy Vegetables

Animal-based foods aren’t the only source of iron. Green leafy vegetables are also good sources of iron. Consider these foods:

  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Collard Greens

1-cup of cooked spinach provides 38 percent of the daily value for iron, a cup of cooked kale provides 7 percent, and a cup of cooked collard greens gives you 11 percent. Greens also provide B vitamins, which help keep your nervous system healthy. If you haven’t had greens before, cook them lightly, and add a squeeze of lemon or lime. This not only adds flavor, the vitamin C in citrus juice helps you absorb the iron in the greens.

For more healthy cooking tips, or information about anemia, check out MayoClinic.com.


Ohio State University Extension Fact Sheet: Iron. https://ohioline.osu.edu/hyg-fact/5000/5559.html

“The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite” by David A. Kessler, M.D., former commissioner of the FDA. Published by Rodale. Publication Year: 2006.

“The Doctors Book of Food Remedies” By Selene Yeager. Published by Rodale. Publication Year: 2006.

All Nutrition Information From FitDay Food Calculator: https://www.fitday.com