Anemia, the disease of lack of blood in the body, is said to occur when red blood cells (RBC) count or Hemoglobin decreases to alarmingly low in the body. Red blood cells contain the protienicious compound bounded by iron, called Hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is the carrier of oxygen to various parts of our body. Decrease in red blood cells means decrease in the carrying capacity of the blood. Anemia is, primarily, the result of nutritional insufficiency in our body. However, it can be caused due to deficiency of Vitamin B12, B6, Folic acid and minerals like copper in the body.
Anemia causes and classification
Anemia is a decrease in blood cell count, and/or decreased hemoglobin content in the blood. Since red blood cells are responsible for carrying oxygen to the cells via the hemoglobin, a lower amount would mean low oxygen in all the body’s tissues. Anemia during pregnancy results in the baby getting less oxygen as well. Anemia can be caused by blood loss, which means that not enough red cells are being produced, or too many red cells are being killed off.
Formation of the hemoglobin is dependent on the diet. Some other pathological conditions do also effects the formation of hemoglobin. Normal values of hemoglobin may vary from 13 to 16 mg/dl in adult males and 11 to 15 mg/dl in normal adult females.
Anemia is further classified into Aplastic anemia, Megaloblastic anemia, Iron deficiency anemia, inherited anemia, Sickle cell anemia and Thalassemia etc.
- Numbness, tingling sensation, depression, irritability and memory loss.
- White pale-ness of skin, gums and around the eyes.
- Fatigue, and dizziness.
- Feeling short of breath.
- Lack vitality. Getting tired very soon after small amount of physical work.
- A peculiar type of Anemia called “Pica” makes the patient have rare cravings, eagerness to eat substances other than food, such as, coal, dirt, starch or hair. This definitely is usually the sign of nutritional deficiency.
- Anemia during pregnancy increases the risk of loosing excessive blood. The baby may also have low amounts of Iron stored for the first month of life.
Anemia remedies at home
- A balanced diet is highly beneficial for anemic people. The diet should ideally constitute of cereals, rice, dairy products (milk, yogurt and cheese), dry beans, eggs, vegetables and fruits, meat, poultry, fish and nuts.
Iron-rich-foods: Liver, green leafy vegetable, beets, dried fruits, bran flake, oysters, brown rice, lentils molasses, raisins and prunes have high iron content. Breads and pastas made from whole grain flour are also high in iron.
- Consumption of a ripe banana; mashed and mixed with a tablespoon of honey, is beneficial in treating anemia.
- Include lots of citrus fruits in the diet, such as orange, lemon, etc.
- Food items cooked in iron pots deliver increased iron content and hence effective in curing anemia.
- Animal protein and organic meats e.g. kidney and liver are rich in vitamins e.g. vitamin B12, that’s effective in hemoglobin production.
- 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of the tincture of Yellow dock root should be taken thrice in a day. Also 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of extract of dandelion leaf and/or root, twice a day, proves effective.
- Intake of tea/coffee should be reduced so as to facilitate normal absorption of iron in body.
- Consumption of beet root, as a cooked vegetable or in salad or juice is an effective and proven home remedy for anemia. It is rich in minerals e.g. sulphur, iron, calcium and iodine and also surplus carbohydrates and proteins. It helps substitute vitamins like thiamine (vitamin B1), riboflavin (vitamin B2), ascorbic acid (vitamin C) etc.
- Naturopathy: Cold water bath early morning helps stimulate body’s enzymatic action and metabolism.
- Red blood cells get stimulated by sun bath.
- 3-4 Figs, Honey, apple cider vinegar and lemon are beneficial for anemic patients when consumed in empty stomach early in the morning.
- Ascorbic acid (vitamin C) helps in absorption of iron in our body. Indian gooseberry (amla) has abundance of vitamin C and is highly recommended by herbal medicine doctors.
Apple and tomato juice are highly effective.
Yoga and exercises helps in normalizing the hormonal and enzymatic activities in our body essential for normal functioning of body which, in turn, helps in better nutrition.