What is the best way to ensure that I get enough iron on a vegan diet?

This comprehensive guide will help you ensure that your vegetarian diet contains enough iron. People who choose a vegetarian diet often worry about maintaining their iron intake due to meat being the primary source. The article provides information on why it is so important to maintain iron levels, the key factors that you should consider when looking for iron in non-meat foods, as well as examples of vegetarian food rich in iron. You should be able to understand how you can balance iron intake while eating a vegetarian diet.

Iron Intake: It's Important to Get Enough

Iron is a vital nutrient. It plays an important role in producing red blood cells, and transporting oxygen around the body. Iron deficiency can cause anemia, fatigue and impaired immunity. It may also lead to complications in pregnancy. Iron deficiency, according to WHO is one of the world's most prevalent nutritional disorders. It is therefore important to consume enough iron, particularly if you are a vegetarian and do not eat traditional iron sources like meat.

Important Points To Note

Two types of iron are available in dietary form - non-heme and heme. Heme iron is derived from animals and our bodies absorb it more easily than non-heme. Vegetarians may have to consume more iron-rich food because they only consume non-heme-iron. Certain factors, however, can increase the absorption rate of non-heme ferr. According to studies in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, iron absorption can be significantly increased by consuming iron-rich food along with vitamin C-rich foods.

Vegetarian Foods Rich in Iron

Other Tips

Consider adding more iron-fortified bread and cereals to your diet. Cast-iron pans are also a great way to increase the iron content of food. Iron-rich food can be combined with foods rich in vitamin C, such as oranges, strawberries and bell peppers. Avoid drinking coffee or tea with your meals, as these contain compounds which inhibit iron absorption.


To conclude, it is important to plan your meals carefully and understand the different sources of iron that are not heme. Iron-rich foods should be included in your meals, and strategies to enhance iron absorption are important. Maintaining healthy iron levels while eating a vegetarian-friendly diet is possible with the correct knowledge and choices of foods.