What is Iron?
Iron is a mineral, and its main purpose is to carry oxygen in the hemoglobin of red blood cells throughout the body so cells can produce energy.
It is crucial to have iron so that your body can create these healthy red blood cells. Iron deficiency is common in bariatric patients undergoing Gastric Bypass surgery due to the altered gastrointestinal tract which can interrupt the normal creation of red blood cells causing symptoms of fatigue, dizziness and weakness.
Other symptoms can include, but not limited to: pale skin and fingernails, headache, restless legs, and low body temperature (feeling cold).
To improve the absorption of iron, eat foods rich in Vitamin C which is found in produce, such as citrus fruits, kiwi, bell peppers or berries. We can absorb three times more iron from animal sources than from plants. If you are mindful to eat a variety of foods, you will most likely consume enough iron daily.
Best Meat Sources:

SOURCESERVING SIZEmg of Iron
Lean beef3oz3mg
Oysters3oz24mg
Chicken (dark meat)3oz1mg
Turkey (dark meat)3oz2mg

Best Plant Sources:

SOURCESERVING SIZEmg of Iron
Beans and Lentils3.5oz3-7mg
Tofu3.5oz3mg
Sweet potatoes1 cup of chunks2mg
Cashews1oz2mg
Dark leafy greens (spinach) cooked½ cup3mg
Fortified breakfast cerealsCheck nutrition labelCheck nutrition label
Whole-grain and enriched breadsCheck nutrition labelCheck nutrition label

Because iron’s important role in our bodies, the following are recommendations for daily supplementation:
Men and Women (no longer having menstrual cycle): 18mg
Men (prone to anemia) and Women (prone to anemia or menstruating women): 45mg
See our online store for Bariatric Advantage and Bariatric Fusion iron options at MyBariatricSolutions.com and ask one of our dietitians if you have questions.