Plant Based Diet and Iron

A couple of things before I begin. I have been following a plant-based diet for about 10 days now. I can tell you I have no inflammation and I feel great. I also am currently losing a 1/2 pound of weight per day. We are getting ready to go on a much needed vacation, so I will try to get at least two more posts in before we go, on this topic.

Now, with all that said, Iron, Protein and B12 are my biggest concerns with following a plant-based diet and also having CKD. There is a lot of evidence that a diet based around plants can help the kidneys. However, because plants are non heme Iron sources, plus high in potassium and phosphorus, I am being proactive with this diet choice. Proactive means learning, studying and understanding symptoms my body may have. This week I started to notice my tongue was getting sore. This means I probably am starting to lose Iron stores. This freaked me out a bit, so I did eat some meat yesterday, and took a Iron supplement. Today, the soreness is gone. One of my issues with this diet, is that Iron in plant foods is not readily absorbed by the body, which means it is basically useless. This should concern anyone, as having Anemia is not fun for anyone, but it is especially concerning if you have kidney disease. So, after doing some more research, I have to be sure and take my plant iron sources with a Vitamin C source. This will not be hard to do, I just have to be more aware of it when I am eating. There are other things that block the absorption of plant sources of Iron. The short video below will explain them in a very easy way to understand.

I plan to continue this plant-based diet, hopefully forever. In the next two posts I will discuss protein and Vitamin B12 as it relates to absorption and bio-availability.

If you have questions, or concerns, please use the contact form under the video to message me.