Hemoglobin (Hb or Hgb) is a protein molecule in red blood cells in the bone marrow that contains iron and carries oxygen. It delivers the most vital nutrient, oxygen from the lungs to be released to the different tissues of the body and collects carbon dioxide to be transported back to the lungs for exhalation.
Nutritional deficiencies are the main cause of low levels of hemoglobin. In most of the cases, kidney disease sufferers face problem with their hemoglobin counts. Hemoglobin count falls due to the decreased production of Erythropoietin (EPO), which is a hormone produced within the kidneys to increase production of red blood cells (RBC).
Those who have low hemoglobin levels often try to find out various ways how to increase hemoglobin. The normal levels of hemoglobin in the body range from 14 to 18 g/dL in men and 12 to 16g/dL in women. You can increase hemoglobin level by taking healthful diet foods, proper supplementation and avoiding bad food habits that reduce iron content in the blood.
There are certain food items that act as medicine in increasing hemoglobin level in the body. These are the rich food sources of the aforementioned nutrients.
Iron deficiency often results in low hemoglobin levels, so in order to improve your hemoglobin count you will have to increase your iron intake. Food items that are rich in iron are oysters, cereals, green leafy vegetables, tomatoes, dried apricots, red meats and liver.
2) Vitamin B6
Your body needs vitamin B6 to produce hemoglobin. It also helps in increasing the amount of oxygen carried by hemoglobin. Increase your dietary intake of vitamin B6 by consuming muesli, whole grains, fortified cereals, liver, tuna fish, sunflower seeds, lentils, kidney beans, peas, nuts, banana, etc.
3) Vitamin B12
Vitamin B-12 contributes to hemoglobin synthesis. Food items such as, poultry, fish, fortified cereals, eggs, soymilk, etc. are good sources of vitamin B12.
4) Vitamin C
Take more vitamin C intake as it helps in the absorption of iron. In case you want to increase your hemoglobin levels fairly quickly, get diet that is rich in vitamin C. Guava, red capsicum, sprouts, papayas, mango, cabbage, broccoli, strawberries, oranges, sprouts are some of the sources of vitamin C.
Apart from food items, there are certain herbal medicines that help in increasing hemoglobin level in red blood cells.
This herb has its origins in India. This herb increases the hemoglobin count by improving the condition of red blood cells. It is also beneficial for enhancing energy production, decreasing irritation, calming the nervous system. It acts like a tonic for the entire body.
2) Dong Quai
The root of this herb is used for preparing soups, to increase production of red blood cells and hemoglobin.
3) Nettle Leaf
Nettle leaf is a rich source of iron that helps in increasing hemoglobin count. It acts like a multi-vitamin and mineral supplement. It is also rich in vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin B, vitamin E, vitamin K, calcium, magnesium, potassium, selenium, zinc, and more.
Blood Transfusion is another option for increasing hemoglobin levels. It is referred to those patients, whose count is severely low and in case of severe blood loss caused may be due to trauma, surgery, bone marrow diseases, bleeding ulcer, etc. It is a safe and common medical procedure in which blood or blood products are transferred by way of an intravenous line into a blood vessel.
Hemoglobin level should be monitored regularly as it reduces the oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood. Some of the common symptoms of low hemoglobin level are dizziness, lethargy, pale skin, etc.
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