“Iron” willed?............ Check your Haemoglobin levels.

Iron is very important ingredient of human diet. This is essential for formation of haemoglobin  Low levels of Haemoglobin causes Iron deficiency anaemia

A report published by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2011, showed that 48% women in the age group 15-49 years in India, had haemoglobin concentrations lower than 120g/L (12g/dL) and were diagnosed as having Anemia. Think about that, almost half of our female population in the prime of their lives possibly suffer from iron deficiency. 

Haemoglobin in red cells carry oxygen all over the body. Iron-deficiency anemia  is a most common form of anemia (low red blood cell or hemoglobin levels)

The normal Haemoglobin levels in blood are:

  • Women: 12.1 to 15.1 gm/dl
  • Men: 13.8 to 17.2 gm/dl
  • Children: 11 to 16 g/dl
  • Pregnant women: 11 to 15.1 g/dl.

Common indicators of anemia include-

Fatigue/ lack of energy

Shortness of breath


Heart palpitations

Pale complexion

In severe cases, spoon shaped nails (koilonychia)

Numbness or hands and feet

Low body temperature

There are two kinds of dietary iron: Heme and non- heme. Heme iron is the iron you get from animal sources like chicken, beef and seafood. While non-heme iron is the iron you get from non-animal sources, which means vegetables, beans, seeds etc.

Vegetarian foods rich in iron are-

Dark green leafy vegetables such as – Cauliflower greens, Colocasia leaves, etc.

Beans- Soybean, Chick peas, Roasted gram

Oilseeds- Niger, Peanuts, pumpkin, sunflower , flax

Millets- Bajra, foxtail, ragi, pearl millet.

Dried fruit and nuts- Almonds, raisins, dried dates, apricots, black currants,Dark chocolate

Besides eating food rich in iron, one should also consume foods rich in Vitamin C(citrus fruits, amla, guava, ) to facilitate better absorption of iron in the body.

- Deepa K

[ Chief Dietician]

<a href="http://www.thehealthsite.com/diseases-conditions/roasted-chana-and-jaggery-to-boost-haemoglobin-levels-bs915/">Read More </a>


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