A “low iron level” is the biggest reason people aren’t able to donate blood.
But there is food we eat every day in South Texas that can boost your iron levels and make your donation a success:
Like you need an excuse to grab a burger? Red meat packs lots of iron. Just go easy on the papas, as fried foods can keep your body from absorbing iron. Meat is full of what’s known as heme iron, which comes from animals and is absorbed by the body much more readily than iron (non-heme) from plant sources.
We love our flank steak, and it’s packed with iron just like hamburger – it’s just easier to eat in a tortilla. The same applies for smoked brisket.
Breakfast tacos with eggs
Eggs rank right up there with red meat when it comes to iron content. Bonus: Add papas (potatoes) for a plant-based source of iron with your eggs.
The humble pinto bean is among the best sources for non-heme iron, and a la charra is better since there isn’t any additional fat. You do know refried beans are refried with lard, right?
Most rice sold today is enriched with vitamins and iron, so whether you have your abuela’s rice or a serving from a restaurant, you’re adding iron.
Salty, spicy, plain – however you love them, the roasted pumpkin seeds we know as pepitas are a good way to add non-heme iron to your diet.
Who knew your backyard grill favorite could boost your iron?
Shrimp any way
Boiled, grilled, baked…just about any way you have ‘em, shrimp can raise your iron levels.
Those slimy, salty delicacies are beautiful when it comes to iron.
Hill Country peaches
While they don’t bring the iron, those juicy delights are packed with Vitamin A, which helps your body absorb it.