6 Iron-Rich Foods That You Can Consume In Summer
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Oftentimes, you may notice that the haemoglobin content in your body is low. This is due to insufficient iron present in the body. Iron is an essential mineral that plays an important role in producing haemoglobin. Haemoglobin is the protein in the red blood cells responsible for carrying oxygen throughout the body.  

Another important task of iron is to maintain energy, cognitive function, and a robust immune system. In the summer season, people often lack energy level which can lead to fatigue and weakness. Thus, it is important to fill your diet with iron-rich foods. Here are some iron-rich food items you can incorporate into your diet. Take a look at them:  

  • Spinach  

According to U.S. Department of Agriculture, spinach is a versatile leafy green that is highly rich in iron. One cup of cooked spinach can provide you with 6.4 milligrams of iron. This leafy green is also packed with Vitamins A and C, calcium, and antioxidants. You can incorporate spinach in salads, and smoothies as well as light side dishes sauteed with garlic and olive oil. 

  • Lentils  

They are known for being the powerhouse of nutrition and are an excellent plant-based source of iron. A cooked cup of lentils provides about 6.6 milligrams of iron. They are also rich in protein, fibre, and other essential minerals like folate and magnesium. Enjoy lentils in your meal by including hearty soups, or as a base for veggie burgers.  

  • Quinoa  

It is a gluten-free grain that is not only rich in iron but also offers complete protein providing all nine essential amino acids. If you provide a cup of cooked quinoa, it will give you approximately 2.8 milligrams of iron. Quinoa has a light and fluffy texture that makes a perfect addition to summer salads, bowls, and a side dish with vegetables.  

  • Strawberries  

Strawberries are a quintessential summer fruit that is boosted with iron levels. Although they don’t contain a high amount of iron themselves, they are high in Vitamin C which enhances iron absorption from other foods. You can enjoy frefresh sh strawberries, in smoothies or as a topping in yoghurt and cereals.  

  • Tofu  

This is an excellent alternative to dairy product paneer. Tofu is a versatile ingredient and an excellent source of iron, especially for those who are following a vegetarian or vegan diet. According to Journal of American Diabetic Association, anemia is prevalent in China and half a cup of tofu can provide around 3.4 milligrams of iron. It can be marinated and grilled, added to stir-fried, or used in salads. Tofu is known to absorb flavours well, making it an ideal dish for the summer months.  

  • Chickpeas  

Also known as garbanzo beans, chickpeas are rich in iron, providing about 4.7 milligrams per cup when cooked. They are also packed with protein, fibre, and essential vitamins and minerals. Chickpeas can be enjoyed in many ways, such as hummus, salads, or roasted crunchy snacks. They make perfect summer dishes.  

There are several ways by which you can enhance iron absorption by pairing it with other ingredients. Take a look at some of the options:  

  • Pair With Vitamin C  

Vitamin C significantly enhances the absorption of non-heme iron. Combine iron-rich foods with Vitamin C-rich food like bell peppers, tomatoes, citrus fruits, and strawberries.   

  • Avoid Certain Inhibitors During Meals  

There are some compounds that can inhibit iron absorption. You can try to avoid drinking coffee, and tea or consuming high-calcium foods and supplements with iron-rich meals.   

  • Cook In Cast Iron Pans  

Cooking in cast iron pans can increase the iron content of your food, especially when cooking acidic foods like tomatoes.