by Carolyn Bell, RDN – Registered Dietitian Nutritionist
There are two types of dietary iron; heme and non-heme iron. Heme iron is found naturally in animal products such as red meat, fish, and poultry, and is easily absorbed by the body. Non-heme iron is the form of iron used to enrich and fortify foods (the type in cereals, breads, etc.). Non-heme iron is also found in plant foods such as spinach, raisins, lentils and beans. Non-heme iron is not easily absorbed by the body. Vitamin C aids in the absorption of non-heme iron. Drinking fruit juice, or eating foods high in Vitamin C, helps the body absorb non-heme iron. Boost your iron intake by eating a balanced diet of animal proteins and plant foods.