18 March 2008  |  Food

Iron: It’s important!

This year I am part of the UCI medical monitoring program which means I have to get a bunch of blood work done a few times a year and send the results in to the UCI. The past few years I haven’t gotten any blood tests (I just assumed since I feel fine that nothing’s wrong). Turns out I have a low ferritin (iron) level. “What?” I thought, “but I eat lots of salad and veggies, I cook in cast iron. Surely my iron stores are plentiful.” But no, they were not. Even though my iron levels were within the normal range (10-154 NG/ML, mine was 32), I was informed that my score is too low for an athlete and might be performance-inhibiting. So now I am starting to eat more red meat (I’m mostly a chicken and fish kind of gal, but Dusty is very excited about the prospect of incorporating more red meat into our diet) since the iron from red meat is the most easily absorbed. I’m also taking a supplement.

So for all you women out there: go get your blood checked! I think it’s very important. If you do it at least once a year you can monitor all those important things and not wait until you don’t feel well to get checked out. I wish I had been smarter about it and started a couple years ago.

And here I am with my buffalo roast in the oven (first time I have ever made any kind of roast, we’ll see how I fare). After looking up some info on buffalo I was surprised to find out that it has more iron and less fat, cholesterol and calories than beef, pork, and chicken. Who knew.


Do you have a question you're dying to have answered about racing, training or food and cooking? Send it to me and I'll try to answer it on my blog.