ah ha, glad we might have tracked something down here, iim.
L - you are exactly right: from the article link above re science minded blah:
What about phytic acid? Phytates, which are found in most plant foods, can reduce iron absorption by up to 80%. But vitamin C—consumed along with a meal--can counteract the effect. In one study, preschoolers with iron deficiency anemia were given vitamin C supplements twice a day—100 mg at each of two phytate-rich meals. After two months, most of the kids were no longer anemic (Seshahdri et al 1985).
This underscores the importance of vitamin C. Many grains and legumes (including soy) can be good sources of iron--if you consume them with vitamin C.