The objectives of this study were to use the dry thyme leaves as source of nonhaeme iron and evaluate the effects of calcium, phosphorus and calcium + phosphorus on nonhaeme iron absorption and haematogenic characteristics in rats. Thirty adult male albino rats, weighing 150 ± 5 g were divided into five groups. The first group fed basal diet, the second group fed thyme diet, the third group fed thyme diet + calcium, the fourth group fed thyme diet + phosphorus and the fifth group fed thyme diet + calcium + phosphorus. All groups fed experimental diets for six weeks. Hemoglobin (Hb), haematocrit (Ht), red blood cell (RBC), mean corpuscular volume (MCV), serum iron (SI), serum ferritin (SF), total iron–binding capacity and transferrin saturation were determined at the beginning and the at end of the experiment. Iron in diet, Fe intake, Fe feces and Fe absorption were also evaluated. The results indicated that the lowest Fe absorption was observed in rats fed the thyme diet + calcium and thyme diet + calcium + phosphorus. Supplementation the thyme diet with calcium or calcium + phosphorus decreased the values of Hb, Ht, RBC, SI and SF. However, supplementation the thyme diet with phosphorus did not affect in Ht, RBC and MCV but Hb, SI and SF increased. The results suggest that supplementation the diet with calcium or calcium + phosphorus interfere with iron absorption
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