People with hemochromatosis need to be extra vigilant with their diet since even a simple mistake could have serious outcomes. As a rule of thumb, sufferers of hemochromatosis should stick to a diet low in iron. To ensure you are focused on the right things, we will tell what is good for you to eat, rather than focus on things you should avoid.
Hemochromatosis is a condition where your body absorbs too much iron and deposits them on vital organs. It is a hereditary health condition that could affect your liver, heart and other major organs. It may also result in darkening of the skin, cause arthritis and give you an abnormal heartbeat.
Avoiding iron-rich food is only one part of the plan. To ensure optimal results, you should also reduce Vitamin C intake as the Ascorbic acid enhances the availability of Nonheme iron which is common in plants.
Consuming grains, nuts and seeds are recommended as they contain Phytic acid which reduces iron absorption. So a combination of plant food, legumes, grains nuts and seed are good for people with hemochromatosis.
What about meat?
If possible, it is best to avoid meat. But if you are a hard-core meat lover, switch to low iron meat like chicken, turkey and tuna. Apart from their low iron content, these meats are rich in protein.
Include a lot of fruits and veggies in your diet. These plant products are rich in antioxidants. They will help reduce the oxidative stress induced by excess iron in your body. Some legumes like spinach have a high iron content. But since they are the non-heme form of iron, their absorption will be limited.
It is best to avoid alcohol if you have hereditary hemochromatosis. Alcohol stresses the liver and fat depositions due to hemochromatosis could easily lead to liver damage if you drink liquor regularly.