Anaemia – Natural Iron Builders
The most common type of anaemia is iron deficiency anaemia. This is a condition where low iron in the body causes a reduction in the number of red blood cells. Most people with this type of anaemia, will usually only have a few symptoms. The severity of symptoms depends essentially on how quickly the anaemia develops.
There are many causes that can lead to a lack of iron in the body, such as internal bleeding, certain medications and heavy periods. The most common symptoms are – fatigue, a pale complexion, shortness of breath and heart palpitations. Some other unusual signs may be a red shiny tongue, brittle nails with longitudinal ridges or slightly concave nails.
The best way to check for anaemia is to have a blood test arranged by your doctor. If your iron is low, then the best thing to do is eat food that has iron and/or take an iron supplement. Once iron levels are in a healthy range, this can be maintained by eating iron-rich foods.
Foods high in Iron
Choose foods such as
- Dried fruit like prunes, raisins and dates
- Dark leafy green vegetables like kale, and spinach
- Legumes like lentils, chickpeas and kidney beans
- Blackstrap molasses
- Red meat
Also add some vitamin c rich foods to your meal to increase the absorption of iron – such as raw capsicum or lemon juice. Or eat vitamin c rich fruit for dessert:- such as kiwi fruit, guava, strawberries, papaya and citrus. Avoid drinking tea or coffee half an hour before a meal or one hour after a meal.
Natural Iron Builders
Here are some ideas for iron building smoothies…
Spinach and Carrot
Ingredients: (for 2 servings)
1 handful spinach
2 glasses of water
Method: Blend together and drink. Can also add stinging nettle tincture (20 drops or as stated on label) for an extra boost.
Prune and Orange
Ingredients: (for 1 serving)
1 glass fresh orange juice
6 prunes (stones removed)
Method: Blend together and drink.