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Top 10 to Try – Best Iron-rich foods for Toddlers & Kids


Have a toddler or kid in your home? Is it time to start feeding your little mushy baby with solid food?  Are you worried about how to get your toddler/kid to eat healthy ensuring essential nutrition they need to grow? Stop worrying, we have your back.  Pediatricians at Quick MD Pediatric clinic help to set your mind at ease by recommending the right nutrition plans for your infants. 

From prenatal visits to vaccinations and annual physicals for adults, Quick MD care provides the best pediatric services in  Mckinney, Texas. Our friendly & professional pediatric staff provides high-quality yet affordable health and well-child care so your children can grow into healthy adults.

Feeding nutritious food to your toddlers can be a struggle that every parent could relate to. A growing child needs to get essential nutrition from the food. but toddlers are the onset of their personal preferences & food choices. Often, they showcase picky and fussy eating behaviors.    

It looks a little extra white and bland. Kids are picky about what they like to put in their mouths. They have a lot of logic to reject good food: I don’t like green, the smell of pumpkin won’t work for me.    

Caregivers should pay attention to children’s nutrition because it is important for their physical and mental development, but also because a lack of vital nutrients can lead to many problems that hamper their development. One such essential nutrient that we will cover is iron. Iron is one of the elements that help the body produce hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is required by the body to transport oxygen between cells.     

The range of foods is beginning to narrow, and some favorites with nutrient deficiencies are emerging. 

 One of the most common nutrient deficiencies in childhood is iron deficiency anemia. Iron deficiency (Anemia)  is not uncommon in children and has a negative influence on their neurodevelopment and behavior. Iron deficiency can lead to anemia. A combination of picky eating and a lack of parental awareness can lead to many young children suffering from this nutrient deficiency.     

In this post, let’s talk about iron-rich food for toddlers with a particular emphasis on picky eaters. We will look at some of the best-known foods, which are good sources of iron, and how the combination of these foods can help prevent the occurrence of anemia in young children. 

Iron Deficiency/ Anemia    

Iron in red blood cells helps to transport oxygen and transport it to different parts of the body. People who get iron deficiency don’t get enough iron in their diet. Red blood cells in the body contain iron in their hemoglobin, the protein that carries oxygen from body tissue to the lungs. Iron gives hemoglobin the power to carry oxygen through the blood so that it gets to where it belongs.  

This condition is called anemia. Anemia occurs when less oxygen enters the cells and tissues, which affects the way the body functions. This means that the body cannot produce hemoglobin, which means that it produces fewer red blood cells.     

Iron plays an important role in muscle function, energy production, and brain development. As a result, children with iron deficiency may have learning and behavioral problems.

Iron Deficiency Signs in Toddlers: 

  • Pale skin 
  • Low appetite 
  • Dizziness
  • Frequently falling ill, catching a cold.
  • Increased heartbeat

What are considered normal iron levels in kids?
7 to 12 months—11 mg per day
1-3 years———– 7 mg per day
4-8 years————10 mg per day

10-Best Iron Rich Foods for Toddlers & Kids.

In newborns, iron stored in their bodies is sufficient for the first four months. Newborn babies can consume iron from breast milk and formula.
Vegans, vegetarians, and fussy children should consume more iron than recommended. Iron is available in two forms: heme iron and nonheme iron. Heme iron is absorbed by our body. Animals and meat contain heme, while heme-free iron comes from plant-based foods. Foods such as lean meat, seafood, eggs, and dairy products contain both.

Now that you have looked at the reasons and the excitement surrounding our iron components without much fuss, let us introduce you to the iron-rich foods that you can incorporate into your child’s nutrition.

  1. Meat and Seafood are good sources of Iron
    Chicken and turkey breasts contain iron. Even lamb chops can work. Seafood such as oysters and canned tuna, which are one of the main sources of omega-3, are also good sources of iron.
    You can also try to make your dish creamier by using avocado instead of milk. Children tend to reject meat, so they tempt them with chicken nuggets, spaghetti, or meatballs. You can also cut the meat into funny shapes.
  2. Dried Fruits 

    Dried fruits are something that kids love, Raisins are mostly liked by children and raisins can beat constipation too. you can also experiment with other options such as red tart cherries, dried apricot, and diced watermelons    

  3. Fortified Cereals and Oatmeal 
    Many dried breakfast bowls filled with cereals for children are fortified with iron up to 100% of the daily requirement. To make oatmeal more interesting, add raisins and a pinch of cinnamon. Avoid a daily portion of them because they are high in sugar and sodium.
  4. Beans & Lentils 

    Protein is just not the reason why one should include chickpeas, kidney beans, soybeans, lentils, or other pulsed beans in your diet. Peanut butter is rich in iron and can be used as a spread or served to children. Peanut butter contains 0.56 mg iron per tablespoon.
    White beans are good when it comes to iron, providing 8 mg per serving. Serve with rice or in a sandwich. However, this number may vary depending on the brand. The iron in these figures will vary by brand.

  5. Greens are the Best Source of Iron
    Vegans, vegetarians, and fussy children consume more iron than recommended. Spinach, kale, and broccoli are all vegetables, whether for children or adults. Cut your vegetables for your children’s favorite dishes. Transform your kids’ smoothie into an extra nutritious mix of vegetables in your kids’ smoothie.

  6. Dark Chocolate
    The fan base for this dark chocolate is enormous. Rich in antioxidants, most adults would include it in their diet, but toddlers often reject it because of its bitter taste. It contains 7 mg of iron in a serving of 3 ounces.
    Try adding shredded nuts such as pistachios or cashew nuts to special dishes that you cook for your child. You can melt the dark chocolate and mix it with peanut butter for a delicious taste. Dark chocolate is one of the best iron-rich foods for your children.

  7. Nuts & Seeds
    Nuts & seeds are not only rich in iron but healthy fats, protein, zinc, and other vital minerals too.
    Certain seeds such as pumpkin seeds, flaxseeds, and sesame seeds are also healthy. They are not only nutritious but also add taste to the meals.

  8. Sweet Potatoes
    Sweet potatoes are particularly rich in vitamin C. Tip: The absorption of vitamin C into the iron-rich diet is a great way to ensure that iron is absorbed by the body. Another great source of ferrous foods is to serve your children whole nuts, like whole raisins, because they are great for suffocating problems. Eggs are rich in proteins, vitamins, minerals, and iron and are bold.
    So the next time you bake a nice potato for your dear children, remember to keep their skin. The use of potato peels contains more iron and vitamin C.

  9. Eggs
    Eggs are a great source of protein, vitamins, and minerals such as iron and eggs are audacious. You can serve them like boiled, or as scrambled eggs, scrambled eggs, or fried egg sandwiches.

  10. Mushrooms
    Certain mushrooms such as oyster mushrooms are rich in iron. Think of your child’s well-being by preparing healthy meals, encouraging them to eat them.

    Are your toddlers or kids getting enough iron? or if you think your infant is iron deficient, consult a doctor or pediatrician for iron supplementation and personalized diet plans that facilitate your kids’ overall development.

    The pediatricians at Quick MD Care are here to help parents develop nutrition plans that are best for their children. Our team of pediatric doctors offer prenatal visits for expert knowledge, expertise and can coordinate diets for common & complex medical conditions, our well child-care services help you create healthy habits for your children that last a lifetime.

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