Getting enough iron in your healthy eating plan is an important element to achieving good health, energy, vitality and lasting weight loss.
Apart from helping to carry oxygen around the body, Iron has an impact on metabolism, making it an important factor in pregnancy weight loss.
Despite this, iron deficiency is a common problem for women, particularly pregnant women, new mothers and breastfeeding mothers.
Not getting adequate iron in your diet can lead to iron deficiency anemia, a condition with many symptoms which can include excessive tiredness, lethargy, breathlessness, pale skin, food cravings and hair loss.
New mothers and breastfeeding mothers should have their iron levels tested by a doctor to ensure they are not deficient, and ensure they include iron-rich foods in their diet as much as possible.
These healthy snacks are all rich in iron, and make a good snack option for mothers who may be lacking iron in their diet:
Take 100 grams of smoked salmon and serve on a slice of rye bread with a tablespoon of cottage cheese. This healthy, snack high in omega 3’s and fibre is also rich in iron thanks to the salmon.
Calories per serve: 252
Half a cup of dried figs delivers iron, fibre, magnesium and potassium. Naturally sweet, dried figs are a healthier alternative to sweet snacks like chocolate or lollies.
Calories per serve: 250
Tahini on Rice Cakes
Made with sesame seeds, tahini is a thick paste commonly used in Middle Eastern recipes that contains iron. Take 1 tablespoon of tahini and spread on a rice cake for an iron-rich snack.
Calories per serve: 186
Two boiled eggs delivers around 12 grams of protein to your diet, but you’ll also receive a hit of iron too.
Calories per serve: 122
Spinach & Blueberry Smoothie
Adding a big handful of baby spinach to your favourite smoothie is a good way to up your intake of iron. Baby spinach is very low in calories and also high in fibre and other essential minerals so is a great way to increase the nutritional value of your smoothie.
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Calories per serve: 246 (made with unsweetened almond milk)
80 grams of sultanas will deliver about 5% of your recommended daily iron intake as well as fibre and vitamin B6.
Calories per serve: 254
Also known as pepitas, pumpkin seeds contain high levels of iron, as well as potassium, magnesium, fibre and protein. Snack on 30 grams of pumpkin seeds to receive all the nutritional benefits!
Calories per serve: 157
Containing 6 grams of iron per 100 grams, dried apricots are a naturally sweet snack that are also high in vitamin C and vitamin A.
Calories per serve: 127 (10 pieces)
Green leafy vegetables are a excellent source of iron, particularly useful for vegetarians or vegans who can’t get iron from beef or chicken. A serving of homemade kale chips will provide a good amount of iron, as well as vitamin C and vitamin A.
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Calories per serve: 92
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