Iron availability: An updated review.Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2004 Dec; 55(8):597-606.IJ
Iron is an essential trace element in human nutrition and its deficiency is a world nutritional problem. Due to the high prevalence of anaemia in developing and industrialized countries, it is necessary to maintain a suitable iron intake through diet in order to achieve an appropriate status of this element in the body. For this reason, accurate knowledge of iron availability of foods is essential in order to plan intervention strategies that improve deficient situations of this nutrient. Regarding to the two forms of iron present in foods, heme iron has greater availability than non-heme iron. Beside this, non-heme iron availability is conditioned by several dietary factors, such as classic factors (meat, ascorbic acid, fibre, phytic acid, polyphenols) and new factors (caseinophosphopeptides and fructo-oligosaccharides with prebiotic characteristics). For that reason, the aim of this paper is to accurately review all investigations reported in the past decade related to dietetic factors that influence the bioavailability of different iron forms.