Packing the iron punch, this recipe has been created with specific iron rich salad ingredients to help you meet your daily iron requirements. Not just iron, it’s also an excellent source of protein, calcium, magnesium, vitamin C and B group vitamins.
This iron rich salad rocks a cool 8mg of your daily iron requirements (RDI females is 18mg and males 8mg). To put this into perspective, one 150g piece of fillet steak will give you just over 3mg of iron. I should explain though that there are two types of iron. The type that comes from meat, poultry and fish (haeme) and the type that comes from plants (non-haeme). Plant iron isn’t absorbed as easily as in the body as iron from animals, so this recipe has been created to optimise the availability of iron, to give you maximum nutrition.
Iron deficiency is the most common nutrient deficiency globally. There are certain foods that help iron absorption and certain foods hinder it and I’ve got a couple of tips for you to get the most out of this meal.
- Avoid drinking tea, coffee or red wine (a glass of white will go better anyway!). Drinking these can decrease iron absorption by up to 40%.
- Avoid berries and chocolate for dessert. This can reduce iron absorption by up to 60%, so worth avoiding with this dish.
Tofu – Contributing approx. 4mg of iron to this salad, tofu also adds 22g of protein! It’s also rich in isoflavones, a type of phytochemical that is well researched for its cancer protective properties.
Kale – Using lemon juice to dress the kale, not only softens it, making it easier to digest, but it massively increases the bioavailability of iron.
Cumin – There’s one reason cumin is in this dish. I’ll tell you why. Because one tablespoon gives a whooping 4mg of iron. Say no more.
Amy Savage is a qualified Nutritionist with a Bachelor of Health Science in Nutritional & Dietetic Medicine and is available for consultations online and in Sydney CBD. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for further details.