We know that iron is important for the production of red blood cells but its role in immunity has only recently been studied. What is now known is that if there is too much iron in the body, pathogens can proliferate. If there is not enough, the appropriate immune cells (especially lymphocytes) don’t adequately react to infection and the production of antibacterial cells falters. (36)
Micro-organism infection, inflammatory conditions, and environmental toxins create free radicals; without the right balance of iron in the blood, healthy cell death and tissue damage can be exacerbated. Iron homeostasis (balance) is therefore critical for the entire immune response to reduce susceptibility to disease and resist the consequences of infection and inflammation. (37)
Food sources of iron include meats and fish, legumes, nuts, seeds, dried fruits, raw cacao, and green leafy vegetables.