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Iron is important in making red blood cells, which carry oxygen around the body.


A lack of iron can lead to iron deficiency anaemia.
Sources of iron include: red meat, liver, nuts, dried fruit, beans...

The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA):
- for adults 19-50 years is 8mg daily for men, 18mg for women, 27mg for pregnancy, and 9mg for lactation. The higher amounts in women and pregnancy are due to blood loss through menstruation and because of the rapid growth of the fetus requiring extra blood circulation during pregnancy.
- adolescents 14-18 years actively growing also need higher iron: 11mg for boys, 15mg for girls, 27mg for pregnancy, and 10mg for lactation,
- women 51+ years drops to 8mg with the assumption that cessation of menstruation has occurred with menopause. It may be noted that menopause occurs later for some women, so they should continue to follow the RDA for younger women until menopause is confirmed.

The Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL) is the maximum daily intake unlikely to cause harmful effects on health. The UL for iron is 45mg daily for all males and females ages 14+ years. For younger ages, the UL is 40mg.

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