Iron in bodies plays a vital role in the growth and development of the brain as well as the muscles. The lack of iron in toddlers and kids can cause iron deficiency and anaemia in children. So, it is very necessary to provide them with the proper iron according to their age to avoid the severe iron deficiency which can harm the kids in many ways.
The parents always think that how much amount should be given to the babies at particular ages. They don’t know the exact amount and either give excess or less amount than the required daily intake of the iron foods. According to the National Institutes of Health, the children should get the following daily iron intake in milligrams (mg):
- Babies 0-6months, 0.27mg
- Infants 7–12 months, 11 mg
- Toddlers aged 1–3 years, 7 m
- Children aged 4–8 years, 10 mg
The iron-rich foods can be classified in heme and non-heme forms. The nonheme food comes from the plants and is purely vegetarian. Heme foods include the meat and kinds of seafood which are a rich source of iron for the kids and works very well in the growth and development of the muscles and brain.
Have a look at the list of both heme and non-heme iron-rich healthy foods which will help you in choosing the correct option for your baby to beat the iron deficiency.
First, we will let you inform about the Heme iron-rich foods:
- Red meat: The richest source of iron is red meat. It has high amounts of heme proteins and makes the baby’s body habitual to absorb more iron. One slice of a beef liver can give your kid 5mg of iron, which is half their recommended consumption. 100gm of cooked beef contains 3mg of iron, while 100gm of cooked liver contains 11mg, more than what your child may need in a day.
- Lean Pork: The healthy and iron-rich lean pork is a good source to prevent kids from iron deficiency. The 100gm of cooked, ground lean pork in a day provides 1.2mg of iron to your child. As compared to other meats, lean pork has a higher absorption rate between 15 and 35 percent.
- Poultry: The dark meat from the poultry is a good source of iron for kids. You can give them beef or pork or a variety of chickens whichever your baby loves to eat. If you don’t know then let us inform you that 75gm of chicken liver contains 9.2mg of iron which is one of the best sources of iron., which helps your children get the required amount of iron every day.
- Eggs: The eggs are also rich in iron and can be made in many forms. A hard-boiled egg contains 1 mg of iron. Kids love to eat eggs with different recipes.
- Fish: Fish is a highly nutritious food which is rich in protein, iron and omega-3 fatty acids. You can make many dishes by adding fish into it. It will also add extra taste in your kid’s diet
- Tuna: Tuna is very low in calorie and is a good source of iron. It can be served to babies with a combination of vegetables and sandwiches.
- Lamb: Lamb is not only a rich source of iron but it also has essential fatty acids like Omega-3s and CLA. It is also rich in protein and contains vitamin B12 which is essential for cognitive development.
- Oysters: The oysters are high in iron and zinc both. This regulates cholesterol levels in the blood, and a 3-ounce serving of cooked oyster provides up to 5.9 mg of iron in kids.
Some essential Nonheme foods which are rich in iron are:
- Green leafy vegetables: The green leafy vegetables are very healthy and good for health. The vegetables like turnips, kale, broccoli, and spinach are all rich sources of iron for kids. 100gm of spinach contains 2.7mg of iron, while the same amount of kale gives you only 1.5mg of iron. Broccoli and turnips may provide even lesser amounts of iron with each having less than 1 mg of iron per 100gm. 125ml of beet greens has 1.5mg of iron while cooked green peas have 1.3mg of iron per 100gm.
- Beans: The beans include black beans, kidney beans, Lima and pinto beans are a rich source of iron. If you are a pure vegetarian then different types of beans are very good for your kids in getting the iron to get the proper growth and development of the body. Three-fourth cup or 175ml of cooked soybeans contains 6.5mg iron, while the same amount of kidney beans contains 3.9mg iron, Lima beans contain 2.2mg iron, and re-fried beans have 3.9mg iron.
- Peanut Butter: The peanut butter is a rich source of protein and iron. In 100gm of peanut butter, there is 1.9mg of iron.
- Oatmeal: The oatmeal is very nutritious and healthy food in getting iron and fibre to the body. According to the source, ¾ of a cup of oatmeal contains 4.5 to 6.6 mg of iron. It also helps in proper digestion of the food which cures babies from suffering constipation.
- Dark Chocolates: The dark chocolates are an antioxidant-rich which helps in boosting the iron in their body. Your kid will get 7 mg of iron per 3-ounce (oz) serving.
- Fruits: The fruits are very good for our body because it has many essential nutrients, vitamins and minerals which help in the development of the body. Many foods are a great source of iron which includes raisins, dried apricots, cherries, watermelon, prunes etc.
- Vitamin-C Foods: The Vitamin-C food helps in absorbing the iron intakes in the body. The foods include oranges, sweet potatoes, bell peppers, berries and many other foods. If your baby is suffering from iron deficiency then give them vitamin C along with iron foods so that it will work properly to cure the deficiency.