Anemia is a medical condition which occurs due to decrease in the total amount of red blood cells. Another big factor involved in the development of anemia is hemoglobin deficiency, which is often responsible for the facial pallor. Depending on the cause, anemia can manifest through different symptoms.
Epidemiology of anemia
The causes of anemia depend on the type. For example, iron deficiency anemia is caused by lack of iron, a mineral which is required by the body for proper hemoglobin production. Iron supplementation is important during pregnancy and in cases of blood loss due to heavy menstruation. Vitamin B12 deficiency is another cause of anemia. Vitamin B12, also known as cobalamin, is an important nutrient that plays a big role in the production of red blood cells.
Anemia is more common in the elderly. The prevalence of the condition increases as we age, and is raised by more than 20% in people aged 85 or more. Anemia is also one of the main conditions affecting 48-63% of nursing home patients, although it hasn’t been sorted in older patients. According to the WHO, besides the elderly, anemia is common among preschool children, pregnant and non-pregnant women. The condition rarely affects men.
Signs and symptoms of anemia
As we already said, the symptoms of anemia vary depending on the type. The most common symptoms of the condition are fatigue, facial pallor, weakness, cravings, brittle nails and hair, dizziness, shortness of breath, irregular heartbeat, cold limbs, and tingling sensation in the arms and legs. The symptoms are often unnoticed until a blood test is performed.
Natural remedies against anemia
Although the condition is usually treated medically, there are many home remedies which can help. Spinach is one of the food that can help – it’s rich in vitamin B12 and iron. ½ a cup of spinach has 35% of the RDA of iron and 33% of the RDA of folic acid. You can eat spinach soup everyday to boost your iron and vitamin B12 levels.
Beetroot and apple juice are two other natural remedies against anemia. Apples are rich in iron and other compounds that can fight anemia, while beets contain fiber, potassium and folic acid. Combining the fruit juices can help your body fight anemia more efficiently, so make sure to drink the mixture every day.
Although not severe as tuberculosis for example, anemia requires proper medical treatment as it may be a symptom of a more severe health condition.
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