Iron (as Iron Citrate)

Iron is a trace mineral that is found primarily in the hemoglobin of red blood cells. It is also found in relative abundance within the myoglobin of muscle cells, where it is required for oxygen and carbon dioxide transport. Iron is also used in several enzymes and energy-producing systems in the body; it is also essential in the production of the neurotransmitters dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin. Most often, a deficiency of iron leads to a particular form of anemia known as microcytic/ hypochromic anemia. Iron deficiency can have serious, and often times, damaging consequences; even resulting in death. Conversely, it is also one of the most frequent causes of poisoning-related deaths in small children.

Iron supplementation is quite controversial; typically menstruating women are the only group of people that need iron replacement on a continual basis because of regular blood loss. Men rarely require iron supplementation and interestingly, men with higher intakes of iron have an increased risk of heart disease. If you are unsure about your need for iron supplementation it is recommended that you first consult with your physician.

Iron Food Sources

Iron is found abundantly in animal products, as well as certain vegetables. Red meats contain the highest percentage of iron content found in all animal sources, while dark green leafy vegetables have the highest iron content of plant origin.

Iron absorption from foods varies greatly depending on the form of iron contained in a given food source. Typically, food sources contain heme iron or non-heme iron; heme iron is better absorbed (roughly 20 to 23 percent) while non-heme iron is absorbed at some 15 - 20%. Animal sources of iron contain both of these forms. Plant sources only contain non-heme iron. If plant sources are boiled, steamed, or cooked, the availability of their iron content is increased. However, if stored or refrigerated for an extended period, these preparation methods negate iron bioavailablity.

Regardless of how the food is cooked or what type it is (or the amount of iron it contains), the body will typically absorb a maximum of 15% of the iron ingested. This is highly variable. Factors influencing iron absorption include individual health status, physiological need. 

Products Containing Iron (as Iron Citrate)
Name Price Rating Serving Price # of Servings Manufacturer Health Condition
Listol $54.95
$1.83 30 Progressive Health ADHD


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