Foods for healthy blood comes in the form of ferric salts (nonheme iron) that come from fruits, vegetables, and eggs. However, this chemical form of iron is absorbed with some difficulty in the intestine. The iron found in meat and fish, called heme iron, is more easily absorbed.
Numerous experiments have shown that vitamin C, particularly that from lemon juice, can double or triple the absorption rate of nonheme iron in the intestine. This can even compensate for the negative effects of phytates ( a component of bran) or polyphenols (tannins) have on iron absorption.
Most cases of anemia are caused by a lack of iron, folic acid, and vitamin B12 that the body needs to produce red blood cells. Using lemon together with iron-rich plant-based foods, such as legumes (beans, lentils, soy, and its derivatives), certain green leafy vegetables (spinach, leeks), or grains (wheat, rice), significantly increases the utilization of this important mineral.
The current recommendation is that each meal includes 25 mg of vitamin C because of its beneficial effect on iron absorption. The amount of vitamin C is provided by half a lemon.
Meat is not essential to blood formation. Blood developed from plant-based foods is of better quality than that from foods of animal origins, which makes foods for healthy blood that much more important.
Soy and its derivatives are excellent sources of iron. Therefore, they are recommended in cases of anemia. Tofu, for example, contains three times as much iron as is found in meat or fresh cheese, and soy beverage (soymilk) contains ten times that found in cow’s milk.
Lemon consumed together with soy or its derivatives facilitates the absorption of the iron the soy contains.
More Foods For Healthy Blood
ALFALFA contains from 300 to 400 micrograms of vitamin K per 100 g, an amount far superior to that of meat or milk. Vitamin K is essential to the liver’s production of prothrombin and other factors involved in blood clotting. Alfalfa also contain close to 1 mg of iron per 100 g, less than the 2.7 mg of spinach, but sufficient to encourage red blood cells production. The vitamin C in alfalfa enhances the absorption of iron from vegetable sources.
In addition to iron, alfalfa contains many other minerals, some in small quantities such as copper and boron, as well as vitamins that together have an anti-anemic and restorative effect. Because of this, alfalfa is indicated for iron-deficiency anemia, undernourishment, and physical exhaustion.
BROAD BEANS are among the foods for healthy blood that should be on everyone’s blood increasing foods list. They’re recommended for people suffering from iron deficiency anemia, as well as during pregnancy, for adolescents, athletes, and those convalescing from infectious disease surgery.
PASSION FRUIT due to its very high iron content as well as the vitamin C that facilitates the absorption of this mineral, passion fruit is excellent for anemics. They’re a great addition to a diet of blood building foods.
LAMBS LETTUCE is anti-anemic, remineralizing, a stimulant to digestion, and a mild laxative. Its most important dietary and therapeutic indication is iron deficiency anemia. Since it contains not only iron, but also vitamin C and minerals such as copper, which facilitate its absorption and as simulation, lamb’s lettuce acts as a powerful anti-anemic.
LEMONS should form a regular part of the diet anyone suffering from anemia. Although its iron supplied in other plant-based foods. This effect is primarily due to vitamin C, which is greatly potentiated by the lemon’s non-nutritive components such as its organic acids. The lemon also contains a certain amount of folic acid, which is among the foods that increase blood in the body. Lemons contain other protective functions, particularly in pregnant women.
LENTILS are an excellent source of iron. However, the iron is nonheme, as opposed to the heme iron in meat. This causes its absorption index to oscillate between 10% and 15%, while the absorption rate for the iron in meat is 25%. This notwithstanding, the vitamin C in accompanying foods significantly increases the absorption rate of nonheme iron from non-meat foods. Iron deficiency in the diet or poor intestinal absorption of this mineral, is an important cause of anemia. Because of this, lentils, accompanied by vitamin C-rich foods such as lemon, potatoes, or certain fruits, make a perfect meal for those suffering from iron-deficiency anemia.
But in addition to iron, lentils provide large amounts of other nutrients that contribute to red blood cell production.
PISTACHIO’S anti-anemic effect is potentiated when they are eaten together with vitamin C-rich fresh fruits and vegetables. It is well known that vitamin C greatly enhances the absorption of iron in the intestine. Those suffering from iron deficiency anemia can benefit from regular pistachio consumption.
RED BEETS are well known for their anti-anemic properties. Their iron content and vitamin C which facilitates the absorption of that mineral are quite modest and alone do not explain red beet’s anti-anemic effect. It is probably some unidentified component that stimulates production blood cells in bone marrow.
WATERCRESS facilitates the elimination of acidic metabolic residues, and, because of its mineral content, it stimulates red blood cell production. It is among the best foods for healthy blood and it is recommended for those suffering from arthritis, gout, obesity, anemia, and those with eczema and skin rashes.
George D. Pamplona-Roger, M.D. “Encyclopedia of Foods and Their Healing Power.” George D. Pamplona-Roger, M.D. Encyclopedia of Foods and Their Healing Power. Trans. Annette Melgosa. Vol. 2. Chai Wan: Editorial Safeliz, 2005. 118, 131, 137, 134, 136, 125, 129, 135, 123, 132.