I'm generally anemic. I live the vegan lifestyle for 3 weeks, then when my iron gets low the only thing I know to do is eat some beef. It makes me feel better (although guilty), and then I go back to being a vegan again. How can I get off of this roller coaster? I'd like to be an always-vegan. Thank you.
There are several vegan foods that are high in iron. You can also get an iron supplement. I would have to research foods that are high in iron and I am sorry that I do not have the time right now but it is easy to do a web search to find out which vegan foods are high in iron. This way you will also find a complete list and not just a listing of a couple of iron rich vegan foods.
3oz (1 serving) of beef has about 3mg of iron in it. To get this much from plants, try:
1 tbs. blackstrap molasses
A 6”x ½” slice of watermelon
¾ cup of cooked leafy green vegetables (spinach may have less available iron than other greens)
½ cup of chickpeas
A little more than 1/2 a cup of cashews
½ cup walnuts (3.75mg)
¾ cup raisins
¾ cup lima or kidney beans
½ cup prune juice (5.2mg)
You should be eating about 10-18 mg of iron a day. To improve absorption, eat your iron-rich foods with Vitamin C. You can also try cooking in a cast iron pan (tomato sauce cooked in cast iron has about 5.7mg of iron). If all else fails, try a supplement!
For a list of other iron-rich foods, try http://www.umm.edu/blood/aneiron.htm or http://www.vrg.org/nutrition/iron.htm