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High Iron Content?

Hi, im a 17 year old college girl and have just been told i have iron deficiency anemia and a very low blood pressure.

Ive got iron tablets to take and have to change my diet, however food and drink is an issue as i dont have any breaks in college and i usually only eat one regular meal a day. I'd also much rather rely on diet changes to get my iron levels up as the tablets have side effects that are quite nasty.

Im just wondering if anyone has any high iron content recipes for drinks or snacks that are easy to make and are easy to eat or drink whilst walking to lessons.

Help would be appreciated x


  • I had/have iron def. anemia too. I was taking liquid iron, but my levels were so low that I needed a higher dose. So i found these http://www.vitacost.com/Enzymatic-Therapy-Ultimate-Iron and i can can take 5-10 a day, in 2 doses without any side affects, and i have a sensitive digestive system. I took about 10 a day for a month or so, and then took 4-5 most days for the next months. So in total, I took the iron supplement from April to Sept and my level went from 3 to 9 in that time, where 10 is minimum, according to the levels set by medical doctors. I also drink a green smoothie most mornings with spinach or kale and spirulina, which is somewhat high in iron. I also have low blood pressure, but not very low as you say.

    Other iron rich foods are sea vegetables. So you could grab a nori sheet and munch on that. Just do a search for vegetarian iron rich food and you'll get lots of information. I know some college dorms, if you live in one, don't allow blenders, so the smoothie idea is out. And eating lots of greens can get difficult. If you are not 100% raw, you could cook some chick peas and carry them around as a snack, as they are rich in iron. To me, they taste a bit nasty raw. Lentils are good too. It all depends on what is available for your lifestyle. It might also mean that you scale your busy college life back a bit to help ensure you get proper nutrition. I know college dorm food is not the greatest. I am working on a PhD so, while I have been through the busy undergrad years, I have more flexibility with eating. I know your options are limited by time and availability of good food. If you were at Penn State where I am, I'd have you stop by for some yummy iron rich raw food--things i eat everyday. Anyway, good luck.

  • Thanks Redhouse!

    Im taking Ferrous Sulphate tablets 3 times a day and have started feeling sick after i take the tablet which doesnt help with lessons at all which is why im searching for more alternatives.

    I live at home with my parents in England so i dont really have a say in what i can or cant eat as cooking for the whole family is quite stressful for my mum, but she has made sure i eat loads of green veg. Im quite willing to change my lifestyle to suit my health as it doesnt matter what i eat as long as i get my strength back up!

    Love the green smoothie idea and will definitly try that!

    Thanks again


  • sea vegetables have tons of iron. you could get a bag of dulse or nori and munch on those straight out of the bag. easy, no prep iron.

  • ras-saadonras-saadon Raw Newbie

    Regarding the Iron I can't say too much but spinach is great, it has lots of iron maybe you can make a green smoothie before\after collage, but about what you said that you don't have a say in what you eat, its your body, and if your family's diet doesn't fit you there is no reason you should follow it, I turned organic&vegan at 15(now 19), it was hard and my mom wasn't too happy about it, but she gotten used to it and also I started making most of my food that I could have better control over my diet and ease the stress of my mom, if your mom is reluctant you help you shift your diet to a better path, then start cooking for yourself, at 17 your no child, and you should be able to make your own choices, especially one as basic as what you eat.

  • Sorry i probably gave you the wrong impression there ras-saadon!

    I do have a say in what i eat, its just that with 7 people in the house, its kinda hard to specify meals and i dont really want to cause undue stress to my mum. She wants me to continue with the tablets as it is easier but i dont want to rely on artificial means (especially as im going to have to start paying for any medicines when i turn 18), id much rather stick to something more natural.

    After college and completing my assignments im usually too tired to even think of making my own meal, which is why im trying to find more snack based things that i can eat during the day.

    Have you got any recommendations of what sort of fruit or veg spinach would go well with?

    Many thanks


  • Oranges work really well with spinach especially because the vitamin C helps absorb iron. So a dressing made out of oranges is nice, or just orange slices with raisins and walnuts on a spinach salad is good. Or of course throwing the spinach, an orange and nut milk into a smoothie is great sweetened with a date. Strawberries and spinach is good too, taste-wise and vit. C-wise. I use frozen strawberries this time of year though.

  • heartshapedskyheartshapedsky Raw Newbie

    Pumpkin seeds and dried apricots are also good iron sources.

  • bittbitt Raw Newbie

    all good advice. i try to eat dulse a few times a week. flax seeds are a pretty easy thing to eat a lot of. i make crackers and flax cakes. see my profile for a recipe. you could also buy flax crackers if you don't have a place to cook.

    don't be afraid to eat nuts and seeds. they are good sources of iron.


  • Spirulina is very rich in iron (and many many other necessary nutrients as well). It is easy to add in the diet. It is a whole food, not a supplement and as a result there is no worry of overdoing it. You can buy spirulina in tablets or powder and mix in juice, water, or smoothies ... I think it has a nice, mild pleasant taste. Here are a couple of articles on spirulina, there are many many more available online.

    http://www.truthpublishing.com/chlorellaspirulina_p/pdf-cat21249.htm An E-book dedicated to spirulina and chlorella

    http://www.naturalnews.com/023337.html A shorter "intro" to spirulina

    There is also a product called Vitamineral Green (I have not tried it) that includes a variety of green superfood powders as well as enzymes which would most likely aid in your body's ability to absorb and use the iron. That is also a powder that you can mix in with a liquid.

  • cacao nibs and seaweed help me to feel better, but they didnt make the problem go away. I have really low iron too... at least i used to, before i started taking floradix. its awesome. it does have yeast in it, which might not be raw. i'm not sure if floravit is raw, but it's certainly closer (gluten and yeast free).


    2 months ago i had the worse period ever. i was nautious, light headed, dizzy, i couldnt think, i couldnt stand up, it was terrible. over the next month i took this once a day (supposed to take it twice a day) and this past period was no problem at all!! it reminded me of what my periods were like before i went vegetarian, much better.

  • My iron levels have always been good (between 13 and 15). After converting to a vegan diet from a vegetarian diet in mid 2007, about 3 months after, I was experiencing lethargy. I thought that it might have been my iron levels. I thought I best have a blood test to find out. I have a book on nutrition, so consulted it to find the high vegan iron foods. Chick peas and pumpkin seeds (pepitas) were at the top of the list. I have read information on the net that contradicts chick peas as high iron source but I'm not sure what is correct. All I know is I ate lots of chick peas (a good hand full a day) and had pepitas with every meal (about 2 tea spoons). I did this for a week before the blood test. The result from the blood test concerned my doctor. She told me that my iron levels were at 37, which is to high. So I would have to think that the chick peas and pepitas did have a definite upward affect on my iron levels. It appears that my body is very good at absorbing iron too. I would like to think that eating a good amount of chick peas and pepitas will help you as well. Remember to combine your iron foods with vitamin C. I've heard good things about seaweed.

    I stopped eating pepitas and chick peas for a month and my iron levels drop back to 15. The lethargy was from not drinking enough water.

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