12 Iron-Rich Foods for Vegans & Vegetarians

April 10, 2017
iron-rich foods for vegans and vegetarians

As a vegetarian, I have heard SO many times that I need to make sure I get enough iron. While it is repetitive, it is a valid point. Iron is a super important nutrient because it’s basically what oxygen binds to so we can transport it around our bodies. No iron = no oxygen = trouble. There are 2 types of iron: haem and non-haem. Haem (like haemoglobin) is the animal form of iron, while non-haem is the plant form.

Here’s the tricky part: non-haem iron is more difficult to absorb than haem iron, so us vegetarians and vegans need to be super careful to get enough of it. For men, the recommended daily intake of iron is 8mg, but for women it is 18mg! Vegans and vegetarians may need up to 1.8x more iron a day, so if you’re a vegan or vegetarian woman, you should be eating around 30mg of iron a day.

That sounds like a lot of iron, and it’s quite popular for vegans and vegetarians to take an iron supplement or multivitamins with added iron. However, it is easy to add iron-rich foods into your diet if you know what you should be eating, so I’ve made this list of 12 iron-rich plant foods that will help you meet your daily iron requirements. Don’t forget to pin it!

iron-rich plant foods for vegans and vegetarians

I’m sure you already have some of those in your diet, so just eating slightly more of them, or adding the ones you might not yet eat, will help you get enough iron. If you’re still worried, you can take an iron tablet. Comment if you know any other good vegan sources of iron, and don’t forget to pin the image so you can find it later!

  1. I know this isn’t a food, but Holland and Barrett’s vegan multivitamin has 100% of your recommended iron (among other things like B12 and D vitamins) which is very helpful if you’re unsure whether you’re getting enough 🙂

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