Submitted to: Encyclopedia of Human Nutrition
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: September 1, 2005
Publication Date: June 1, 2005
Citation: Hunt, J.R. 2005. Iron: physiology, requirements, and dietary sources. In: Cabellero, B., Allen, L. and Prentice, A., editors. Encyclopedia of Human Nutrition, 2nd Ed. Elsevier Limited. p. 82-90. Technical Abstract: Iron, the earth's most abundant metal and fourth most common element, is also the essential nutrient that is most commonly deficient in human diets. At the beginning of the 21st century, the World Health Organization recognizes iron deficiency as one of the ten greatest global health risks, ranked according to the number of lost healthy life years. Iron deficiency impairs reproductive performance, cognitive development, and work capacity. Effectively resolving this problem with preventative nutritional strategies remains an unmet challenge.