The skin is our largest organ in the body and can be an indicator of our overall health. Among the many nutrients that support skin health, iron is one that’s often overlooked.
Apart from skin health, iron is essential in energy production, immunity, and brain function. Let’s get to know the benefits that iron can have on the maintenance of skin health.
What is iron?
Iron is one of the essential minerals that our bodies require to function smoothly (1). Since our bodies cannot produce iron on their own, we have to rely on our diet and other sources for iron, such as supplements.
Iron for skin: Why is it important?
We usually associate iron with energy, red blood cell production, immune system health, and brain function. But besides these important functions, iron also plays a key role in improving our skin health.
Research shows that certain iron-containing proteins play a key part in the metabolism of collagen (2), a protein abundantly found in our bodies (3).
Collagen provides structural integrity to our bones, muscles, tendons and skin (3). It also helps make our skin look young and healthy. As we advance in years, our skin tends to sag and wrinkle because collagen decreases with age.
In addition to healthier looking skin, collagen also helps our wounds heal quickly. It achieves this by attracting new skin cells to the site of the wound, so that new tissue can grow (3).
What are good sources of iron for skin?
There are many food sources you can consider when it comes to iron. Here are just some of your choices if you want to consume iron for skin health (4):
Meat and eggs
Meats, such as beef, lamb, ham, turkey, chicken, veal, pork, dried beef, and liver are some of the best sources of iron (4).
Prawn, clams, scallops, oysters, tuna, sardines, haddock, and mackerel contain a good amount of iron as well as other beneficial nutrients (4).
Vegetables with good amounts of iron are spinach, sweet potatoes, peas, broccoli, green beans, beet greens, dandelion greens, collards, kale, and chard (4).
Look for strawberries, melons, raisins, dates, figs, prunes, dried apricots, and dried peaches if you’re looking to add some iron for skin health (4).
Breads and cereals
Look for whole wheat bread, enriched pasta, bran cereals, corn meal, rye bread, oats (steal cuts, organic, or rolled), enriched rice, and whole grains (quinoa, spelt, millet, and brown rice) for your iron fix.
Beans and other foods
Tofu, beans, tomato products, dried peas, dried beans, and lentils can help you meet your daily iron requirement.
Sometimes dietary restrictions can prevent us from getting our daily iron intake. In these cases, you might want to consider taking iron supplements. They are a great way to help you meet your daily requirement of iron if you think your diet significantly lacks it.
Vitable supplements are a great choice since they are designed to be easily digestible and absorbed by the body. Don’t forget to consult your doctor first before taking any form of iron supplements.
Besides helping our bodies with energy production, immunity, and brain function, iron also plays a key role in the health of our skin. More than ever, this means that we need to make sure that we are always taking adequate amounts of this nutrient each day.
Got your doctor’s approval for iron supplementation? It may be time to consider Vitable vitamins. Our vitamin subscription in Australia provides custom vitamin packs to support your health goals and needs. With our vitamin delivery service, you’ll be sure to receive your daily vitamins on time, right at your doorstep!
Find out more about other supplements that can support energy levels in the body:
*Always read the label. Follow the directions for use. If symptoms persist, talk to your health professional. Vitamin and/or mineral supplements should not replace a balanced diet.
- Iron (n.d.) Researched December 9, 2021 from https://research.vitable.com.au/iron
- The Role of Iron in the Skin and Cutaneous Wound Healing (2014) Researched December 9, 2021 from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4091310/
- What is Collagen and Why do People Use it? (2017) Researched December 9, 2021 from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/262881
- Iron Rich Foods (n.d.) Researched December 9, 2021 from https://www.redcrossblood.org/donate-blood/blood-donation-process/before-during-after/iron-blood-donation/iron-rich-foods.html