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Scand J Gastroenterol. 1979;14(7):769-79.

Dietary heme iron absorption. A discussion of possible mechanisms for the absorption-promoting effect of meat and for the regulation of iron absorption.


Two main findings are reported. 1) The absorption of heme iron from a composite meal was very little if at all influenced by the subject's iron status at doses in the usual physiological range, but at high doses of heme iron there was a strong correlation with the subject's iron status. A hypothesis is presented to explain the regulation of iron absorption, so as to account for the impact of the subject's iron status, which is always evident with non-heme iron absorption but occurred only at high doses with heme iron. 2) Meat enhanced the absorption of heme iron. A probable explantation for the influence of meat on the separate absorbing mechanisms is that meat may stimulate the digestion of food, so that iron in either form is more efficiently released and made available for absorption.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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