Home VSPedia Iron

Iron Daily Intake

Gender Age Intake
0-6 months Male 0.27 mg/day
0-6 months Female 0.27 mg/day
7-12 months Male 11 mg/day
7-12 months Female 11 mg/day
1-3 years Male 7 mg/day
1-3 years Female 7 mg/day
3-7 years Male 10 mg/day
3-7 years Female 10 mg/day
7-11 years Male 8 mg/day
7-11 years Female 8 mg/day
11-18 years Male 11 mg/day
11-18 years Female 15 mg/day
18–49 years Male 8 mg/day
18–49 years Female 18 mg/day
49-59 years Male 8 mg/day
49-59 years Female 8 mg/day
59 years and over Male 8 mg/day
59 years and over Female 8 mg/day

This essential mineral is found in all body cells. It is important for making myoglobin in muscles and hemoglobin in blood.

Useful Properties

Most of the iron is contained in the myoglobin and hemoglobin. It takes part in creating various proteins in the human body and transports carbon dioxide and oxygen throughout the body. Iron is necessary for many other chemical reactions too.

Athletes take iron supplements in order to improve performance. It is also used for treating canker sores, Crohn’s disease, ADHD, fatigue, and depression.

Iron Deficiency

The following persons are exposed to the possibility of low iron levels:

  • Pregnant women
  • Women during heavy menstrual periods
  • Women who have just born a baby
  • Vegetarians
  • Marathon runners
  • Blood donors
  • Persons with bleeding in their intestines
  • Persons with gastrointestinal diseases

Deficiency of iron in the human body over a long period can cause iron deficiency anemia. Its symptoms include headache, weight loss, lack of energy, irritability, and shortness of breath.

Iron Side Effects

People rarely have too much iron in the body but it may happen with children who swallow iron supplements or with persons who suffer from hemochromatosis.

Iron poisoning has the following symptoms: dizziness, headache, fatigue, grayish skin color, anorexia, shortness of breath, vomiting, and nausea.

Iron Absorption

Natural sources of iron are healthy and safe. Meat provides the body with better absorbed iron but iron from plants is easier regulated.


Special supplements are much harder to absorb, so try to include enough iron-rich foods in your diet. Remember that vitamin C promotes iron absorption.

If you do not breastfeed your infant, give him iron-fortified nutrition. When you move your baby to solid food, make sure that the products are iron-rich.

Iron Uses

Effective for
Low levels of red blood cells in people with a long-term illness, Low levels of healthy red blood cells due to iron deficiency, Low iron levels in women who are pregnant
Possibly effective for
Memory and thinking skills, Heart failure
Possibly ineffective for
Preterm birth
Insufficient evidence for
Athletic performance, Breath-holding attacks, Child development, Cancer of the esophagus, Fatigue, Depression after childbirth, A type of inflammatory bowel disease, Canker sores

Top 10 Foods Highest in Iron

  • Clams
  • Oysters
  • Mussels
  • Liver
  • Squash seeds
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Cashew
  • Hazelnut
  • Beef
  • White beans