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How To Increase Your Iron Absorption?

How to increase your Iron absorption?

In the last tip we had discussed about

a few of the vegetarian sources which are having

very good amount of iron in them. Click here

to view the tip if you have missed it. However,

even after taking enough iron, your

haemoglobin may not increase. Reason?

There are some foods which increase and

there are some foods that decrease the

iron absorption in your body. So,

you should be aware of these foods.

Food That Prevent Iron Absorption Are:


Coffee contains caffeine and other

polyphenol like chlorogenic acid which

prevent absorption of iron in your body. If

you are fond of coffee, I know that

it is hard for you to break the

habit of taking coffee. But, the thing you

have to do is that limit your coffee intake. You

can have 2 cup of coffee per day, that too, you

can use only 5gm of coffee powder per cup. And now,

as you know that which are the good sources of iron

from our last tip, avoid taking

these sources of iron along with coffee.


Tea contains tannins and this tannin

prevents iron absorption in your body. These

compounds present in coffee and tea bind with

iron during digestion, making it

more difficult to absorb.


Red Wine:

Red wines, however have tannins, which

can prevent iron absorption. But,

normal intake of red wine in limited quantity and

taking it in between main meal will

hardly prevent iron absorption.

Dark Chocolate: (made out of cacao beans)

Cacao beans contains phenolic compounds, which

prevent iron absorption in your body. According to

the iron disorder institutes, cacao beans can

inhibit 90% of iron absorption in your body.


Found in dairy products like

  • Milk &
  • Cheese

Calcium from dairy products interferes significantly

with iron absorption. Studies have showed that

about 30-50 % more iron was absorbed when

no milk or cheese was served with the main meal, which

provides most of the dietary iron. First 40mg of calcium

in the meal showed no inhibiting effects, whereas

300-600mg of calcium prevents iron absorption by

60 %. Which is very significant. So, try to avoid

having cheese n milk with your main meal.

Foods That Help In Iron Absorption Are:


Present in

  • Guawa
  • Grapes
  • Strawberry
  • Sprouted

Vitamin -C is the main nutrient which increases

absorption of iron in your body, even in the

presence of inhibitors like tannates and calcium. Taking

3-4 serving of vitamin-C rich food per day will

increase your iron absorption. Whole pulses

don’t have vitamin-C when raw or cooked. However, when

you sprout whole pulse, it develops

vitamin-C in it and this becomes good source of it. But,

these sprouts should be taken in raw form. Don’t

cook them as heating sprouts will destroy vitamin-C in it.


Carotenoids and other organic acids:

Found in

  • Tomato
  • Pineapples
  • Dark leafy vegetables.

Intake of carotenoids, lycopene, lutein, & zeaxanthin improve

iron absorption from meal and even

reverse the inhibitory effects of coffee.

That’s all about iron absorption enhancers (increase iron absorption) and

inhibitors (reduce iron absorption).

Also remember- pregnant women & growing children need

increased amount of iron. Make sure they take

enough iron and food that help in iron absorption.

That’s all for today,

See you next Tuesday,

With another Tuesday tip,

Till then,

Take care.

Providing simple solutions for the complexities of life-

Dr. Bhumita Makwana.

Your Dietitian & Cosmetic Clinician

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