With the modern day and age being what it is, it can be difficult to wrest control of your diet in a positive way. Fortunately, a few small changes to what we eat can ensure that we are getting the correct balance of Vitamins and Minerals – and it really isn't that hard to do. All you need to do is take a closer look at these nutrients to see what they are, what they do and where they come from; and you will be well on your way to health-food-success!
The body requires vitamins and minerals to maintain regular healthy functioning. They are responsible for things like clotting the blood and building new DNA, as well as creating Red Blood Cells and thereby boosting the immune system. Without them, we would be subject to a whole plethora of horrible diseases – but worse than that, without them we simply wouldn't stay alive for very long.
A balanced diet can give the body the majority of the essential nutrients that it needs, but there are some who escape the net. The body can recreate some vitamins for itself, but there are those that need to arrive from an outside source (i.e. your food). Let's take a closer look at one of those minerals now: Iron, to see what it is, what it does and where it does it!
Healthy Snack Sources of Iron
Our bodies require Iron in order to produce and fortify red blood cells and to carry Oxygen throughout the body. According to Web MD, it is the most common nutritional deficiency in the entire US, affecting roughly 10% of the female population (estimate from the CDC). Many people don't think of Iron as a nutrient, but rather as an optional extra. Unfortunately, this has largely contributed to our sort of general lackadaisical approach to getting enough of this particular mineral.
Iron Deficiency is fairly easy to diagnose, according to the British National Health Service. Also known as Anaemia, this disorder affects women predominantly because it is caused by lack of iron and/or blood loss. The menstrual cycle can be enough to catapult you into anaemia if you aren't getting enough Iron in your diet. Symptoms include a horrendous lethargy, dizziness, pale skin, a shortness of breath and heart palpitations. A common treatment is to prescribe Iron tablets; a simple supplement that ought to have you feeling better in a few weeks – but that you will have to continue taking for up to six months. It is also advised that you take them with orange juice, as this will maximize their speed of absorption. They also have some unwelcome side effects such as constipation or diarrhea, stomach aches, and pains, black feces, heartburn, and nausea... as you can see, an Iron supplement is to be avoided at all possible costs!
It isn't just so simple as that though... if you have been diagnosed with Anaemia then you need to start looking at what you eat from day to day and working out how you are going to improve it. You need to balance your diet, meaning you need to make sure you are getting enough of these nutrients in a natural way. Eating foods rich in Iron is a sure-fire way to help your system out a little. So what are you waiting for? The time is now to get snacks. Let's take a closer look at some of the foods that you should be chowing down on to keep those Iron levels high!
Sources of Iron
According to the Australian national health body Health Direct, Iron can be stored in the body, but it firmly falls into the category of minerals that the body cannot produce for itself. This means that it must be eaten or taken in supplement form. Health Direct also state quite clearly that red meat is the best way to up your iron intake... making Anaemia fairly common among vegetarians.
Nuts are an excellent source of Iron, with several different kinds containing high Iron content – sometimes as much as 20% of your RDA per portion! Let's take a look at which nuts you should be eating if you want to boost your Iron intake!
For a high in Iron Nut you want a Pistachio. With nearly 14mg of Iron per 100g Pistachios present a solution to your Iron nutrient needs. You ought to eat no more than one to two handfuls of Pistachios a day depending on your size. This is because they have a high essential fatty acids content and you don't want to overdo it!
Pistachios are also rich in Calcium, Potassium and numerous other vitamins and minerals. They are a high protein snack ideal for those seeking to build muscle the healthy way and make a great sweet or savory snack. Pistachios should be your first choice for a high Iron snack.
According to DailyIron.net, Hazelnuts are the next nut in line for being a good source of Iron. Eaten raw, a Hazelnut will be naturally rich in potassium and Iron – containing 4.7 mg per portion of Iron. Hazelnuts are native and grow wild to most of Europe and America, so these nuts can even be free if you are willing to do the harvesting!
Believe it or not, your average packet of mixed nuts contain roughly 2.3 mg of Iron per portion – which isn't a bad figure in comparison to most foods. Mixed nuts are a great idea for those who want to ensure they are getting a good, varied balance of all of the many vitamins and minerals that your body needs to survive. By eating a handful of nutty trail mix a day you can boost your entire immune system, help your body to help itself and ultimately feel better! All it takes is a little mix...
So now that you know which foods contain the most in Iron, all you need to do is go out and make a change to your shopping list. L'Orenta Gourmet Nuts can help you by providing a fine selection of premium quality nuts -some of which have so much Iron you might be able to avoid supplements in the future!
So what are you waiting for? Head on over to our website and shop for the snacks that might change your life. We supply only the very best in snack products, so you know that with L'Orenta Nuts you are always getting the best deal!