Iron is crucial for children’s health and development. An exclusive breastfed baby gets enough iron required for his body from breast milk. But after 6 months, foods in the form of liquids, purees and semi solids have to be introduced as breast milk alone can’t provide the enough nutrients, especially iron.
- Not getting enough can cause iron deficiency anemia and make you baby more susceptible to illness and infections.
- Low iron can result in tiredness and irritability.
- Iron deficiency or low hemoglobin can lead to growth deficiencies and behavioral issues in babies and kids.
Iron is responsible for the production of red blood cells, in turn helping in the transportation of oxygen throughout the body. Iron provides hemoglobin which is the protein found in red blood cells.
Iron requirement in body
Age 0-6 months : 0.27 milligrams(mg)/day
7-12 months need 11 mg / day
Ages 1 to 3 years: 7 mg / day
Ages 4 to 8 years: 10 mg /day and so on…..
If you are vegetarian then serve iron rich food with vitamin c such as orange juice, oranges, strawberries, red and green bell peppers, papaya, broccoli, grapefruit, cantaloupe, tomatoes, broccoli, mangoes, and sweet potatoes.
That’s why I always used to add tomatoes in spinach vegetable and some time squeeze lemon to.
Iron found in animal source is easy to absorbed such as meat, seafood, and poultry.
Here are some iron rich food that we can add in your kids daily diet, actually not only kids we have to add these food in our families daily diet.😀
Yes spinach is really a great source of iron. During my pregnancy I started hating spinach vegetables. So my mother in law add spinach in daal and prepare its paratha and puri. Now I add spinach in all possible things so that my daughter get iron properly.
# Add spinach in tomato soup.
# Add it in vegetable or even in normal khichidi.
# Prepare its paratha, puri.
# Prepare its vegetables like Palak paneer, tomato Palak, corn Palak etc etc. 1/4th cup of spinach contain 1.61mg of iron.
2. Methi/ Fenugreek leaves
Fenugreek leaves are enriched with minerals like Potassium, Calcium, and Iron. You can include fenugreek leaves in paratha, can add in vegetables or in khichidi. Its seeds are also very beneficial, add it in your family diet through chaas/butter milk .(must read this chaas recipe)
This herb is an excellent source of iron. It contain 5.08 mg/100g of iron. You can prepare pudina chutney or can add pudina leaves while preparing coriander chutney. I used to add dried pudina powder in chaas/buttermilk.
4. Coriander leaves
Prepare its chutney, can use in vegetable. I used to apply coriander chutney in roti and give that roll to my daughter.
Read this for guidance : Party paratha
5. Jaggery / gur
Yes a very healthy and tasty source of iron. I used to put gur in prashad on daily basis and give it to my daughter. In the form of prashad she takes it easily. 😉
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6. Roasted bengal gram/chana
A very healthy snacks for the whole family. My father-in law is a great fan of roasted gram. A jar full of gram is always available in my home. Remember what you take your kids learn the same, so I am very happy that my daughter loves it too.
It contains a good amount of iron, sodium and selenium in addition to small doses of manganese, copper and zinc.
7. Green peas
You can add peas in khichidi, pulav or can prepare its vegetable. 1/2 cup contain 0.61 of iron.
8. Spring onion
Add in bhajies. Prepare potato and onion vegetable. It really taste good. Add it in soup or in fried rice.
9. Radish leaves
The green parts of a radish contain more nutrients than the entire radish itself. They help provide a nutrient rich diet and also some important minerals like iron, calcium, folic acid, vitamin C and phosphorous.
we used to prepare daal muli, and in its vegetable also we can add its leafs too.
Cabbage is rich in iron and sulphur. Can prepare its vegetable. Its paratha also taste good.
Cow peas/leaves can be cooked in the form of curries / stir fries which are an excellent source of iron.
Fish is an excellent source of iron. It can be steamed, fried or curried as required.
I have never tried egg, but I give it to my daughter because of its nutritional benefits. Egg is an easy source of iron and my daughter loves it taste.😀 1 large egg ( 17 g) contain 0.46 of iron.
14. Soya bean
Soya bean is a great source of iron. We used to make its roti by adding its flour with wheat flour and gram flour. Mix Soya bean with black beans, green gram and peanut. Soak all three over night. Drain the water and leave all this for a day in a sprout box. Add chat masala and lemon juice and can chop onion and tomato to enhance its taste . A healthy iron rich breakfast is ready for the kids as well as for the whole family.
Finger millet is very high in calcium, rich in iron and fiber, and has a better energy content. We can use it in the form of roti, idli, dosa. Home made cerelac is prepared with ragi. It contain 3.9mg of iron.
16. Brown rice
It is naturally rich in fiber, it helps rid the body from toxins, and its high iron content also helps to fight anemia and fatigue. Cook a serving of brown rice along with your favorite beans or veggies for an iron-rich meal.
17. Dry fruits
A handful of (raisins, fig, almond, walnut etc.) can provide adequate amount of iron to babies and pregnant woman. We can also prepare dry fruits powder and add that powder in milk, porridge or in sera/halwa.
Read : Homemade kesar badam(Almond) powder for Kids
18 . Whole Wheat Bread
Its 1/2 slice contain 0.43 mg of iron. Toddlers and kids generally love its taste so its a easy and healthy option to give.
Beetroot is of exceptional nutritional value; especially the greens, which are rich in calcium, iron and vitamins A and C. It can be added in khichadi, soup or can be added with any juice. The green leaves should not be overlooked; they can be cooked up and enjoyed in the same way as spinach.
read : Mix veg soup
Lentils are an excellent source of iron. Any lentils like masoor dal, mung dal, chana dal all are rich in iron. Give lentils on daily basis to your baby.
Read: Lentil Soup(Dal pani) for our 6 month old Baby
It contain 4.6mg/100gm of iron. Its an easy source of iron and can be given to children in evening snacks.
22. Poha/ Rice flakes
Poha are lactose free, heart healthy and fat free. They are a good source of eleven vital minerals and vitamins including iron.
Incorporating potatoes into our little one’s diet helps them reach their recommended daily intake of the essential mineral iron. Can give boiled and mashed potato. Can prepare its vegetable, used it as paratha stuffing or as finger food(of course boiled)😂.
24. Pumpkin seeds
A handful of pumpkin seeds, or an ounce, contains about one milligram of iron. We Can prepare its sweet sourly vegetable also . It is really a very healthy vegetable not only for kids but for everyone.
It contain 8mg of iron. we can prepare its roti and laddos. In Rajasthan we prepare its rabri, by mixing it with chaas /buttermilk.
26. Prune juice
It contain 3.2 mg of iron per cup.
Oats contain 4.7mg of iron per 100gm. It is an ideal source of giving iron to your baby in the form of porridges, oats laddoo, cake etc.
28. Dried apricot
Just a handful of dried apricots can provide 35% of daily iron intake. Chop them up to serve with other fruits or over a salad.
Therr are many other iron rich food also but here I mentioned only those that are easily available and can be taken by kids easily. Hope this article help you to increase the iron content in your families daily diet.
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