Do you suffer from anemia? Find out the symptoms of anemia and what natural remedies you can take to correct it. So, what is anemia and what causes it.
As you probably already know, anemia is a blood disorder which comes about through having a low red blood cell, or hemoglobin count. For all you anorexics out there, (respect) that’s hemoglobin and not hemogoblin which is a deficiency of small, naughty, fairy-like folk. Okay – enough poor humor – let’s get serious.
Hemoglobin is a protein that is contained within red blood cells. Its purpose in the grand scale of things is to carry oxygen around the bloodstream to the various organs in your body. Our organs thrive on oxygen, so when they are starved of it they cannot function efficiently, and one of the most common ways that this manifests itself, is through feelings of fatigue. We’ll go into the symptoms of anemia in a little more detail in a minute. So, low hemoglobin, or a lack of sufficient red blood cells, results in anemia. Now let’s just take a quick look at the various causes.
The Causes of Anemia
The possible causes of anemia are many and varied, but the most common ones include:
- Family genes – Anemia can be hereditary and from time to time (rarely, thankfully) it affects new born babies.
- Pregnancy – First of all, women of childbearing age can often suffer from anemia because of blood loss through menstruation. Also, when women become pregnant, although the menstruation cycle is interrupted, the demands of the baby in the womb for blood can also lead to anemia.
- Iron Deficient Diet – It is the bone marrow in the centre of your bones that manufactures hemoglobin, but it needs a good supply of iron in order to be able to do so. Without it, an iron deficiency will occur.
- Vitamin Deficient Diet – This comes about when you don’t have enough Vitamin B12, or enough Folate, also known as Folic acid. Both of these naturally occurring chemicals are necessary to enable your body to produce hemoglobin.
- Old Age – As we age, our organs naturally begin to wear out, and the effectiveness of their functionality declines. This often manifests itself in deceased renal (kidney) function, due to renal artery disease. Also, as body metabolism slows, there is a decline in testosterone production (in both women and men), and stem cell production also slows right down.
- Disease – There are a number of diseases that can cause anemia, some of which are serious and require medical attention. A holistic health lifestyle and diet will of course help, but in the case of serious illness, you must consult your family doctor.
The Main Symptoms of Anemia
Statistics show that approximately 7% of American women suffer with anemia. The main symptoms are weakness and fatigue. We already know that anemia means that you don’t have enough oxygen in your bloodstream, and without this oxygen you cannot generate the energy your body requires to perform normal everyday physical tasks.
So, normal tasks like carrying a bag of shopping upstairs, which you would usually do without any problem, may suddenly cause tiredness and feelings of weakness if you’ve become anemic. Anemia can also affect your alertness, either during work, or for children, during school. Other symptoms of anemia can include:
- Dizzy Spells
- Coldness of hands and/or feet
- Mood swings
- Rapid heartbeat
- Shortness of breath
- A lightening of skin tone
Whilst being anemic is not life threatening in most cases, there are instances where it could be related to another more serious illness such as Crones Disease, or Cancer. It is always therefore advisable to see your doctor for a check-up.
Natural Remedies for Anemia
Most cases of anemia are a result of iron or vitamin deficiency. Both of these conditions can be dealt with by wholly natural means. Here are a few natural, holistic remedies which will help to cure the condition.
Natural Remedy 1 – Increasing Iron Intake
Iron is a mineral that is present in many of the foods that we eat, so increasing your consumption of the more iron rich foods will help to top-up your reserves. These foods include: green leafy vegetables such as collard and spinach; egg yolk; dried fruits such as prunes and raisins; seafood – particularly clams, oysters and scallops; turkey or chicken giblets – great for making soup with; legumes, liver and artichokes.
Natural Remedy 2 – Boosting Iron Absorption
Iron can be broken down into two types – heme iron, which is derived from animal products, and, non-heme iron which comes from plants. By eating both heme and non-heme iron, you can increase your body’s absorption rate of the non-heme iron by as much as 300%
Vitamin C also plays an important role with regard to iron absorption. Not only does it help with the absorption of non-heme iron, but for vegetarians, whose intake of heme-iron is restricted to fish-based sources, getting plenty of vitamin C is important
Natural Remedy 3 – Managing Drinking Habits
Certain drinks can interfere with the body’s absorption of iron, especially if drunk while eating. So during meal times you should avoid drinking tea, coffee, and red wine
Natural Remedy 4 – Increase Levels of Vitamin B12 and Folic Acid
If you’re anemia is caused because of Vitamin B12 and Folic Acid deficiency, you can supplement your body’s levels through diet.
Vitamin B12 is found in:
- Meat – must be organic from a holistic health point of view
- Egg yolks
- Dairy products – once again organic, and unprocessed
The Best source of Folic Acid is green vegetables such as
- Brussel sprouts
Taking B12 and Folic Acid Supplements
You can also take supplements of B12 and Folic Acid which can be found in most good natural health medicine stores, or from a supplier you can find online.
In most instances, the natural holistic health remedies for anemia shown above, should help to get rid of the problem, but if symptoms persist, then you should go and see you doctor.