Iron Woman

Who had a good weekend? I did! It wasn’t the best ever, but no weekend is a “bad” weekend. Clemson sure could have played better, but let’s not get into that…

Go Tigers!

I had a relatively healthy Friday, but that went right out the window on Saturday. It could have been much worse, and I don’t feel guilty at all. Kev and I split quesadillas for snack/dinner while watching football, and we split this frozen pizza for a late dinner after the GA vs. USC game.

Beer n' Pizza

I don’t generally like thin pizzas or white pizzas, and this was both. However, we agreed that it was pretty darn good for the price.

Pizza may not be the healthiest option, but you know what is healthy? Iron. (Sweet transition, right?) I purchased lots of spinach, sprouts, salmon, and beef at the store Sunday, so it got me thinking about this vital nutrient.

Women’s Health Magazine said that iron eliminates free radicals from the body “and helps protect against heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and cancer.” Iron also strengthens your immune system and keeps your thyroid running smoothly.

Stella Lucia Volpe, PhD, RD, an associate professor of nutrition at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing, told Fitness Magazine, “Only heme iron — found in animal foods like beef, lamb, or poultry — is directly absorbed into the body… Vegetable iron isn’t absorbed as efficiently.”

Spinach Salad (Only Part of Dinner)

No matter your diet (carnivore, flexitarian, or vegetarian/vegan), you can boost absorption by consuming iron-rich foods along with Vitamin C. According to Fitness Magazine, calcium interferes with iron absorption. I guess fortified cereal doesn’t help so much with milk!

We should get 18 milligrams of iron per day, but that can be difficult – especially on a plant based diet. Up to 62 percent of women fail to meet the recommended minimum.

To check the iron levels in common foods, check out these handy lists from FitSugar and WebMD. A few of the listed entries are:

  • Half a cup of cooked chickpeas = 3.4 mg
  • Half a cup of steamed kale = 2 mg
  • 3 oz of steak = 4 mg
How was your weekend? Did you catch any great football games? Do you keep track of your iron intake?

27 Comments to “Iron Woman”

  1. Ooh that pizza looks tasty! I don’t really keep track of my iron intake, but I sure can tell when I’m low on it, I get SO sluggish and weak. Glad you had a marvelous weekend my friend! :)

  2. This is such great information about Iron! I haven’t paid attention to it in the past, but I probably should! Thanks for sharing :)

  3. Eating a vegetarian diet, I sometimes worry about my iron levels. I try to pay attention to it, but you can never really be quite sure, can you? I do notice that I sometimes start craving more iron rich foods, which probably means I’m getting a bit low. Blah. Gotta remember to take those multi vitamins!

  4. I don’t worry about iron too much mostly because of the amounts of greens and chickpeas I consume.

  5. I love thin crust pizza.. and white pizza… so I’m pretty sure I would love that one!! I did watch some football this weekend…. SOOOO happy that the Bill’s finally won!!!! I’m not quite as embarrassed to be a Bill’s fan anymore :P

  6. I have never paid attention to my iron intake. Maybe I will start?

  7. I don’t keep up with my iron levels, but I eat a TON of spinach. Love the stuff! Your salad looks pretty tasty. I usually hate the taste of store-bought pizza, but there are a few brands I can eat.

    Football was all.I.did.this.weekend. thanks to my crazed fiance. GO VOLS!

  8. I definitely don’t eat as healthy on the weekends! My schedule is just so random, it’s hard!

    I take an iron supplement every couple of days, because I don’t eat meat and sometimes it’s hard for me to get enough!

  9. Yum, sometimes a pizza is always the answer! I have reall crap iron results when I went for a blood test (although I eat a ton of spinach and dried fruit) so have to take iron tablets now – boo! My weekend was much the same as yours! Bring on the next one ;)

  10. I just tried two of those archer’s farm pizzas and both were pretty good! I liked the basil pesto one and the spinach and goat cheese one. I don’t know if those are the proper names ha.

  11. I do keep track of my iron intake..especially now that I’m preggers.

    Oh and Target pizzas are quite good!

  12. I definitely try and watch my iron since I’m a vegetarian. I make sure to eat a lot of iron rich foods and take a whole food multivitamin with iron. I’m really surprised such a high percentage of women don’t meet the minimum iron requirement!

  13. We listened to the Bears game on the radio. They won which always makes my Sunday better! Go Bears!

    I have never really paid much attention to my iron intake and I’m sure I don’t get enough. Thanks for sharing this. :)

  14. I don’t keep track of my iron intake but I’m assuming I get enough. I eat lots of greens, salmon and have beef every now and again. Plus I think there is a boat load in my prenatal vit!

  15. First week of football was awesome! I really enjoyed myself. As for the iron intake, when I remember to keep track, I’m great. But, I usually fall off the iron wagon a couple of times a week. I need a better system for this!

  16. I was just talking with some friends about iron this weekend. I’ve become like 90% vegetarian and 10% vegan (it’s really hard to cut out all dairy, but I’m working on it). I’ve heard that there is an iron supplement that doesn’t make you plugged up ;( Don’t know how to say it nicely!! I’m going to do some research and ask around to see what it is and I can post if you would like.

  17. Omg the USC game was crazy wasn’t it?! Guess that’s what makes them fun to watch though!

  18. I never keep track of my iron intake, but eat a lot of dark leafy greens so hopefully I’m packing loads in there, That pizza looks so tasty…yum!

  19. I went to the UCF v BC game, and cheered my Seminoles on from Central Florida! Both of my teams won, wahoo! Sadly, the Steelers lost to the Ravens but you can’t win them all ;)

  20. Um yeah. Mizzou could have played better, too. I’m still bitter. Meh!

    At least my Chicago Bears didn’t let me down!

  21. I have to be careful to get enough iron because I don’t eat much meat…so I try to get it from plant sources and I also take a multivitamin with iron.

    My weekend was fun! No football watchin for me though…I’m not a fan! My boyfriend on the other hand was glued to the TV with the fantasy football stuff!

  22. Awesomely timed iron post! I just bought some iron pills this morning. I’ve been lacking in energy and complained to my mom–who pointed out that she is regularly anemic, and it may just run in the family. I know pills aren’t a solution in and of themselves, so off to buy some spinach (and luckily I already eat tons of chickpeas!). I take a calcium pill too, so thanks for that note about them affecting each other–maybe I’ll take the calcium with breakfast and the iron with dinner! We’ll see how this goes. Again, such perfect timing and great info! Thanks :D

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