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Tea, tannin and iron absorption

8/17 8:56:10

Question
i have recently given up red meat and am taking blackstrap molasses for an iron source along with vitamin c to help absorption my problem is i like tea and i read that the tannin in tea can block nutrient absorption how true is this and apart from giving up tea is there anything can be done about this.
                                    thank you.

Answer
Dear Kieran,

Tannin indeed can reduce absorption of iron but the concentrations should be as high as  10 g/kg diet (5 g/kg doesn't work). Tea contains roughly 40 mg tannic acid tea per 1 gram of tea or 60 mg per one tea bag. It would take making tea with 83 tea bags to inhibit absorption of iron from 1 one-pound steak.

Studies suggested that 50 mg ascorbic acid is required to overcome the inhibitory effects on iron absorption of any meal containing greater than 100 mg tannic acid (American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol 53, 537-541, 1991).

Tanya Zilberter
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