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Iron in a healthy diet

One mineral that is particularly important for women to be taking in is iron. Iron plays a key role in the formation of haemoglobin, which helps to supply the body's cells with oxygen. When not enough iron is present in the diet, symptoms such as fatigue, weakness, poor athletic performance, and decreased immunity can be seen. On the flip side, when an excess is taken in, this can be just as dangerous, with very high levels leading to death.

The main foods that supply the body with iron include chicken liver, oysters, beef, clams, turkey, chicken, tuna, crab, oatmeal, soybeans, lentils, beans, molasses, and spinach. Additionally, if you are not eating a lot of red meat products in your diet, it can help with absorbency to eat the non-meat sources with other foods that are rich in vitamin C.

Vegetarians may also want to consider taking a supplement, because they are often the most at risk for seeing a deficiency of this critical nutrient.

Additionally, tea and calcium can interfere with the body utilizing the mineral upon consumption so it is best to avoid these substances when you are eating your meals.

The current recommendation for this mineral is set at 11 mg per day for males 14-18, and 15 mg per day for females in the same age range. Once you are 19 to 50 however, the recommendation is 8 mg for males, and 18 for females. After 51 years of age, then you can lower the dosage to 8 mg per day.

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