7 Top High-Iron Drinks for Busy Adults

7 Top High-Iron Drinks for Busy Adults

As individuals combine job, family obligations, and personal well-being, the need for a balanced diet becomes increasingly apparent. Iron, an important element our bodies cannot create independently, is critical for overall health. Traditional iron-rich meals may not appeal to or fit everyone’s lifestyle. 

Certain drinks, on the other hand, are high in iron and can be a useful addition to the regular diet.

Symptoms and Risks of Iron Deficiency

Symptoms and Risks of Iron Deficiency

Iron deficiency is one of the most frequent nutritional deficiencies, impacting about 2 billion individuals worldwide. Iron deficiency can cause worrying symptoms, such as:

  • Fatigue – Iron is critical for the production of hemoglobin, which carries oxygen to your body’s tissues. Without adequate iron, you may feel very tired and lack energy.
  • Weakness – Your muscles need oxygen to contract and move your body. Iron deficiency reduces oxygen delivery, which can result in muscle weakness.
  • Pale skin – Hemoglobin gives your skin a rosy complexion. Low hemoglobin turns skin pale and even blueish.
  • Dizziness – Oxygen carried to the brain may be diminished with iron deficiency, resulting in lightheadedness or dizziness.

If left untreated, iron deficiency can lead to anemia. This is linked to extreme exhaustion, weakness, shortness of breath, a racing heart, headaches, and other symptoms. Children and pregnant women are at an increased risk.

Iron deficiency can also harm immunological function, cognitive development, workplace and academic productivity, and restless leg syndrome. Adequate iron consumption is critical for avoiding these troubling signs and hazards.

Recommended Daily Iron Intake for Adults

Adults should attempt to ingest enough iron every day to preserve good health. The RDA for iron is:

  • 18 mg per day for women aged 19-50 years old
  • 8 mg per day for men aged 19 years and older

Women aged 19-50 require more iron than men because of blood loss during menstruation. After menopause, women’s iron requirements decrease to 8 mg per day, which is the same as men’s.

Pregnant women have higher iron requirements as well. The recommended daily dose for pregnant women is 27 mg. Lactating women require 9-10 mg of iron every day after giving birth.

Consuming adequate iron promotes hemoglobin synthesis and avoids iron deficiency. Hemoglobin is the protein in red blood cells that transports oxygen. Inadequate iron levels cause the body to create insufficient hemoglobin, resulting in anemia and tiredness.

7 Iron-Rich Drinks for Adults

7 Iron-Rich Drinks for Adults

Let’s look at seven iron-rich drinks that are easy to incorporate into an adult’s daily routine.

Beetroot Juice

Beetroot is a good source of iron, with around 1.1mg per 100g of raw beets. Furthermore, beetroot contains nitrates, which can improve physical performance, making it an excellent pre-workout drink. Beetroot juice may be a nutritious and refreshing iron-rich drink for adults.

How to consume? To maximize your iron consumption, go for freshly squeezed juice. You might also include additional iron-rich fruits and vegetables, such as apples or carrots.

Blackstrap Molasses

Blackstrap molasses is a form of molasses derived from the third boiling of sugarcane syrup. Because many sugars are eliminated throughout the three boilings, blackstrap molasses has a higher nutritional content than normal molasses.

A tablespoon of blackstrap molasses provides 3 mg of iron, which is approximately 17% of the recommended daily requirement for adult men and women. Blackstrap molasses also contains calcium, potassium, magnesium, vitamin B6, and other essential minerals.

Some people dislike molasses because of its thick, sticky texture. However, it is quite simple to include in cocktails. Add a spoonful of molasses to a glass of warm milk or non-dairy milk. You may also add it to coffee, tea, and smoothies. The rich, bittersweet flavor works particularly well with ginger, cinnamon, and citrus.

Pea Protein Shake

Pea protein shakes are an excellent plant-based source of iron. Pea protein powder contains around 5mg of iron per 30g dose.

Make a healthy smoothie by combining pea protein powder, non-dairy milk (dairy decreases iron absorption), and your favorite fruits.

Tomato juice

This colorful and flavorful juice has around 1 mg of iron per cup. It is a readily digested source of iron that may be consumed at any time.

To boost the flavor and nutritional value of fresh tomato juice, season with black salt and pepper.

Dried Apricot Infusion

Dried apricots are strong in iron, with more than 2 mg per ounce. Steeping dried apricots in hot water yields an iron-rich infusion with a bright, tart fruity taste.

Bring water to a boil to prepare a dried apricot infusion. Put 5-6 dried apricots in a heatproof jar and pour boiling water over them. Allow to soak for at least 10 minutes, then drain the apricots before drinking.

Spices like cinnamon sticks or fresh ginger can be added to the infusion while steeping to improve its flavor. After filtering, stir in a spoonful of honey for added sweetness. Drink this iron-rich infusion warm or cooled.

Prune Juice

Prune juice is a good non-heme iron source, with around 3mg of iron per cup. Along with assisting digestion, it has a natural sweetness that removes the need for additional sugar.

Prune juice can be taken alone or as part of a smoothie. Adding a lemon squeeze not only improves taste but also promotes iron absorption.

Green Juice

Green juice, a combination of green vegetables such as spinach and kale, is high in iron and other essential nutrients.

When producing green juice, consider including a source of Vitamin C, such as oranges or strawberries. This increases the body’s ability to absorb iron.

Tips for Increasing Iron Absorption

To completely enhance iron absorption from these iron-rich beverages for adults, consider the following suggestions:

  • Combine iron sources with vitamin C-rich meals. It improves iron absorption.
  • Avoid taking your iron supplements with coffee, tea, or dairy products. These drugs include chemicals that can reduce iron absorption.
  • Regular exercise increases the body’s ability to absorb iron.

Potential Side Effects

Consuming too much iron can cause some mild side effects:

  • Constipation – Iron supplements or consuming high amounts of iron can cause constipation due to the muscle contractions and hardness of stool that iron causes. Staying hydrated, exercising, and increasing fiber intake can help relieve constipation.
  • Dark stools – Stools turning dark or black is a harmless side effect of taking iron supplements or eating/drinking iron-rich foods and drinks. The iron gets digested and mixes with stool, causing the color change. It is not indicative of any internal bleeding.
  • Upset stomach – Some people may experience nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, heartburn, or stomach pain when consuming supplemental iron. Taking iron supplements with food can help minimize upset stomachs. Start with a low dose and increase slowly if needed. Consider switching iron sources or forms if it persists.

The above side effects are generally mild and often go away once the body adjusts to the increased iron intake. Consult a doctor if any severe side effects occur when increasing dietary iron or taking supplements.


Maintaining an appropriately healthy diet might be difficult due to busy schedules. Fortunately, high-iron drinks provide a simple and efficient answer. 

With the drinks outlined above, you may maintain your iron levels while trying new flavors. Before making any dramatic dietary changes, contact a healthcare practitioner. 

If you enjoyed this article, you may also want to read this article on 5 Iron-Rich Drinks You Can Make at Home.

*This information is not intended to serve as a substitute for professional medical or dietary advice tailored to individual needs.

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Dr. Kimberly Langdon

Kimberly Langdon

Dr. Kimberly Langdon has been an MD for 31 years, board-certified obstetrician/gynecologist with 19-years of clinical experience. She graduated from The Ohio State University College of Medicine, earning Honors in many rotations. She then completed her OB/GYN residency program at The Ohio State University Medical Center, earning first-place accolades for her Senior Research Project and Score of 98th percentile on a National Proficiency Test.

During her clinical career, she delivered over 2000 babies and specialized in minimally invasive procedures, menopause, endometriosis, menstrual disorders, and polycystic ovarian syndrome. After retiring from clinical practice, she founded a medical device company to commercialize her two patented and four patent-pending medical devices for both life-threatening and non-life-threatening infections.

Kimberly Langdon M.D.

Founder and Chief Scientific Officer, Coologics, 2010-present
The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Doctor of Medicine 1987-1991
The Ohio State University Hospital Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology Residency Program 1991-1995
Private practice 1995-2010

Po-Chang Hsu

Po-Chang Hsu

Po-Chang Hsu, M.D., received his medical doctorate from Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston. During his medical school training, Dr. Hsu worked with various patients, including adult and pediatric patients with acute and chronic conditions. Dr. Hsu’s interests include neurology, psychiatry, pediatrics, and sleep medicine.

Before medical school, Dr. Hsu finished a master’s degree at Harvard University and wrote a thesis on neuroimaging in schizophrenia patients at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, a Harvard Medical School-affiliated hospital. Dr. Hsu was also a part of the 2008 NASA Phoenix Lander Mission team, which sent a robotic spacecraft to the North polar region of Mars. Dr. Hsu also had research experience on neuroimaging in neonates at Boston Children’s Hospital, another Harvard Medical School-affiliated Hospital.

Since graduating from medical school, Dr. Hsu has worked as a full-time medical writer and consultant. In addition, he has experience writing and ghostwriting books and articles for physicians and health technology start-up companies. Dr. Hsu believes good communication between healthcare providers and patients creates the best results.


-Peer Reviewed Journal Article:
Kounaves, S.P., Hecht, M.H., West, S.J., Morookian, J.-M., Young, S.M.M., Quinn, R., Grunthaner, P., Wen, X., Weilert, M., Cable, C.A., Fisher, A., Gospodinova, K., Kapit, J., Stroble, S., Hsu, P.-C., Clark, B.C., Ming, D.W. and Smith, P.H. The MECA wet chemistry laboratory on the 2007 phoenix mars scout Lander. Journal of Geophysical Research. 2009, Mar; 114(E3): 10.1029/2008je003084.

-Poster Presentation:
2011 Harvard Psychiatry Mysell Poster Session; Boston, MA
Hsu, P.C., Rathi, Y., Eckbo, R., Nestor, P., Niznikiewicz, M., Thompson, E., Kubicki, M., Shenton, M.E. (March, 2011). Two-Tensor Diffusion Tensor Imaging of Acoustic Radiations in Schizophrenia

Dr. Nicolette Natale

Nicolette Natale

Dr. Nicolette Natale is a physician, with a background in Psychology, General Medicine, and English Literature, combining her expertise to provide readers with the most accurate, easy-to-understand, and comprehensive information regarding healthcare. She received her Doctorate in Osteopathic Medicine from Nova Southeastern University, and her bachelor’s in English Literature and Psychology from the University of Miami. Dr. Natale seeks to empower individuals with knowledge, fostering a greater understanding of holistic health and encouraging a proactive approach to well-being