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Iron is an essential element required for producing new red blood cells, and also resides in our muscle cells and in proteins used for the metabolism and immune system. Iron-rich diets ensure healthy energy levels and play a crucial role in energy production and muscle function. The recommended daily allowance of iron for adult men is 8mg and for adult women, it's between 8-18mg. The recommended allowance is slightly higher for vegetarians. Many people do not meet their dietary iron target, but this can be achieved fairly easily by eating iron-rich foods. One pro tip: try not to combine iron with coffee or dairy products as they can inhibit iron absorption.

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1. Lentils

Cooked lentils contain nearly seven milligrams of iron per cup. Additionally, a cup of cooked lentils is packed with fiber and can even lower cholesterol levels and balance blood sugar. Be sure to soak lentils overnight as this will decrease phytic acid that can inhibit iron absorption.

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