Iron is an important nutrient that is used by the body to produce hemoglobin. If you have got a picky eater on your hands, possibilities are that he/she might not be eating enough iron-rich foods. This can put your child at risk for iron deficiency, which is the most common cause of anemia. Not getting enough iron can also mean more infections, more colds, and more bouts of the flu. But do not worry; try some of these clever ways to get more iron into your child's diet without a fuss:
- Salsa with Added Beans
Make dinner a real fiesta by serving whole grain tortilla chips and salsa. Add some iron-packed beans to the salsa and they will asking more of it!
2.Macaroni and Cheese With Ham
Good old Mac and Cheese is a true favorite among all children, and while it is easy enough to make, offer the best nutrients by simply adding little cubes of ham to the dish for added iron and new flavors.
- Potato (Skins)
When you make French fries or baked potatoes for your kid, be sure to leave the skin on as they are a good source of vitamin C. Potato skins contain most of the nutrients in a potato, including five times the amount of iron as the rest of the potato.
This is almost a no-brainer since most kids are more than happy to eat burgers anytime! Make the patties yourself using lean ground meat and kick up the iron by adding some shredded kale, spinach, or even pureed beans before you cook it. Serve with homemade potato wedges that you bake with the skin on for even more iron.
Dry cereal contains as much as 50% of the daily recommended iron intake (be sure to read the product labels and be aware that calcium can potentially inhibit iron absorption). Choose flavors your child loves or add dried fruit (apricots, prunes, etc.) on top to sweeten whole grain and oat cereals while also adding more iron!
- Pumpkin Seed Snacks
If your child is old enough to eat roasted pumpkin seeds, you can make them a regular snack at home or for their school lunch bag. These crunchy seeds contain nearly 6 milligrams of iron per half cup and other important nutrients too. Try making a trail mix with raisins, prunes, dried apricots, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds.
Sneaking in spinach, kale, or other leafy greens is easy with smoothies because berries and other fruits will help mask the taste. Just throw it all into the food processor or blender with some water or juice! And do not forget to add some citrus or other fruits that are high in vitamin C to help the body better absorb the iron.
- Prune Juice
Prune juice is one of the few types of fruit juices high in iron. Also used for constipation, it could help your child get enough of their daily iron supply. Due to their high sugar content, juices should be limited to no more than 4-6 ounces per day.
- Peanut Butter and Jelly
Already a kid-friendly, peanut butter and jelly sandwiched between fortified whole-wheat bread can help your children easily meet their iron needs. Peanut butter baked into cookies with enriched flour or oatmeal can be a tasty high-iron treat.
- Raisins and Other Dried Fruit
Kids love to snack on raisins. The good news is that the dried fruit can give them a boost in iron, while also helping to prevent constipation. A quarter cup of raisins has about 1 milligram of iron.
What About Supplements?
EBMfer is a vegan iron supplement with built-in vitamin C advantage that helps increase energy levels in people with low hemoglobin levels. EBMfer is available in capsules containing 100 mg elemental iron per capsule and great tasting raspberry flavoured liquid containing 5 mg elemental iron per mL of the liquid. Liquid could be especially suitable for children fussy about taking iron or swallowing iron pills. EBMfer is a ready liquid that does not require cumbersome reconstitution.