In the not too distant past I was watching a program about people with bad diets being ‘educated’ by an expert. My curiosity was tweaked when this expert did a quick diagnostic of digestive problems by looking at the subjects tongue.

Eventually this curiosity got to a high enough level for me to find out more. Firstly I had a look in the mirror. One quick search later and I found this site. I have yet to find another site to back up this information (something I’m a bit dubious about) but according to this information I have the following problems:
Problems with small intestines, unfortunately the site didn’t do into anymore detail that this so thats a bit of a non-starter.
Possible “stagnation of blood; fat and mucus deposits; or a weakness in the blood leading to such conditions as anaemia.”
I’m pretty sure I don’t have mucus deposits and I’ve come to the conclusion that maybe I have a ‘weakness in the blood’. Now I know that anaemia can be caused by a lack of iron so I’ve done a bit of research on iron, and here is is:

Firstly there are two types of iron that can be absorbed by the body, heme and non-heme:

  • heme – This is iron bound to hemoglobin or myoglobin, in other words iron in blood. This is the most easily absorbed form of iron but it also promotes the absorbtion of non-heme
  • non-heme – Thsi is iron found in plants, it is harder to absorb (especially for the elderly). Unabsorbed or unbound non-heme can promote pro-oxidants and leads to the formation of free radicals.

Vitamin C will promote iron absorbtion whereas Phytic and tannic acids will supress the absorbtion of iron when consumed in large amounts. Phytic acid is found in whole grain food and non-herbal teas. Tannic acid if found in coffee, cola drinks, chocolate and red wines. (I must again stress that these will only cause a problem in large amounts)

Here is an incomplete list of food which are a good source of iron (the ones I liked the look of ;)):

  • Liver
  • Beef (preferably lean)
  • Egg (especially the yolks)
  • Baked potato (with skin)
  • Tuna
  • Iron fortified cereal (ie Bran flakes)
  • Broccoli and Leafy dark green vegetables

Spinach isn’t quite as good a source as you may think but this suits me down to the ground as I’m not too keen on the taste.

The sources I used for this mini-article were:
HPS online
Jackson Gastroenterology and
AllRefer Health