Work notes :Anemia and treatment through food in India

Anemia is a condition characterized by too little hemoglobin or low red blood cells in the blood.  Anemia develops very slowly and gradually … it makes the person tired and exhausted with time. He or she might do all the daily chores and activities but the efficiency and speed comes down.

Common symptoms : fatigue, weakness, breathlessness, palpitations, sore mouth or tongue , headaches, lack of appetite, loss of hair, tingling in hands and legs, etc.

Causes of Anemia: reduced or insufficient production of red blood cells,loss of blood due to injury, excessive menstruations or gastrointestinal causes duodenal ulcers, hemorrhoids, piles , hookworm infection or internal bleeding. Hemolysis, The life of the red blood cells 120 days and for production of red blood cells – iron, vitamin b12 and folic acid rate has to be maintained in the body.

Disorder of digestive system may also lead to impaired absorption of the essential nutrients resulting in to anemia even after having nutritious food. The most common is iron deficiency anemia

Diet : 1) include plenty of green leafy vegetables in diet – cooked, raw in form of salad or chutneys.  2) iron fortified cereals such as whole grains, barley, oats, brown rice and millets. Cereals are also rich in phytates, which inhibit iron absorption.  3) Spices are great sources of non-heme iron as well such as Tamarind, cumin seeds, mango powder, kokum and turmeric are some of them. These can make a considerable contribution to your daily iron intake. 3) Vegetables such as amla, raw papaya, raw banana, raw jackfruit, leafy vegetables, potatoes, tomatoes, beetroots, green peas, avocado, etc. are high in iron.  Fruit such as prunes, kokum, apricots, grapes, pomegranate, coconut, figs, banana, guava, etc.

Kindly note food that are seasonal and regional in India are included in the list – keeping demographic and climate conditions in India.


Ways to Increasing Iron Absorption in the body from everyday Indian Cooked food

  • Use iron kadhai or Iron pan for cooking food. Some iron from the pot will be incorporated in food. Store water in Iron kadhai or Iron vessel at night – use the water in the morning for cooking vegetables, dal or rotis.
  • Methi leaves and methi seeds help in improving Iron levels in the body. Drink Methi leaves juice last at night 1 cup to improve iron, b6 and b12 in the body
  • Increasing calcium content by eating curd or any other milk product with the meals. In case of vegan or lactose intolerance – you might light to include calcium tablet as supplement.
  • Eating betel leaf with choona after meal also helps in providing calcium and improves digestion.
  • Insufficient intake of vitamin C also leads to poor absorption of iron by the body.
  • The age – old practice of squeezing lemon juice on the food and salad helps in increase of Vitamin C and absorption of iron.
  • Sweat also eliminates iron so people in hotter climates suffer from iron deficiency compared to people living in cooler areas. Make sure you stay hydrated.



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