What is Hemoglobin?
Hemoglobin is a protein found in red blood cells in the bone marrow that carries oxygen to all rest of the body. According to Mayo Clinic, a low hemoglobin level as anything below 13.5 grams per deciliter in men and 12 grams per deciliter in women. The condition in which the red cell count or hemoglobin is less than normal is known as Anemia.
Symptoms of a Low Hemoglobin Level
- Shortness of breath
- Trouble breathing when doing things like walking, climbing the stairs, etc
- Swollen hands and feet
- Chest pain
- Pale skin
- Fast heartbeat
6 Ways to Increase Hemoglobin Level
Eat Foods Rich in Iron
One of the most common causes of iron deficiency is a low hemoglobin level. The more iron you will consume, the better your hemoglobin level would be. Some of the foods you can add to your daily diet include chicken, spinach, broccoli, cabbage, tofu, baked potatoes, kale, watermelon, apple, whole egg, dates, almonds, etc.
Increase Vitamin C Consumption
Increasing the consumption of vitamin C will help increase your hemoglobin level. A combination of iron and vitamin C is important to maintain the hemoglobin level. Foods rich in vitamin C include lemon, broccoli, oranges, grapefruit, strawberries, bell peppers, papaya and tomatoes.
Higher Folic Acid Intake
Folic acid helps make red blood cells and when there is a deficiency of folic acid in your body, it can automatically lead to a deficiency of hemoglobin in your body. Green vegetables, chicken, bananas, peanuts, dried beans are some of the sources of folic acid you can add to your diet. Beetroot is also high in folic acid which is why people always recommend this to a person with a low hemoglobin level.
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, magnesium, potassium, selenium, zinc and more.
Any kind of exercise can help- from moderate to intense – increase the hemoglobin level. When you exercise, your body produces more hemoglobin to meet the increasing demand for oxygen throughout the body.
Blood transfusion is another option for increasing hemoglobin levels but this is referred to those with a severely low count. 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.
Also read: Health Benefits of Blood Donation
You should always keep your hemoglobin levels in check and eat a diet rich in iron, folic acid, vitamin C, etc. All of this can help maintain your red blood cell count and sometimes you would require a blood transfusion. Depending on the underlying issue and your condition, choose the appropriate treatment. But make sure you consult a doctor to check for any allergies and the severity of your condition.