Low Hemoglobin Level? Learn Ways to Increase It

Hemoglobin, abbreviated Hb or Hgb, is produced in developing red blood cells in the bone marrow.  It is responsible for giving blood its red color. Its function is the transport of oxygen from the lungs to be released to the different tissues of the body and, in exchange, collects carbon dioxide to be transported back to the lungs.

The normal levels of hemoglobin is 14 - 18 g/dL in males and 12 - 16g/dL in females. A deficiency of hemoglobin would decrease the oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood. This also decreases the number of red blood cells, resulting in a condition called anemia.  Causes of low levels of hemoglobin levels include poor nutrition, certain diseases affecting the bone marrow, chronic diseases like cancer and kidney disease, blood loss, certain drugs and cancer therapy. Low levels of hemoglobin contribute to a variety of symptoms such as dizziness, lethargy, pale skin, and if severe, result in organ damage.

Ways to Increase Hemoglobin Levels

1. Food and Medicine

There are medicines and natural ways to increase hemoglobin and therefore prevent anemia.

Vitamin and mineral supplementation. There are several minerals and vitamins that can increase hemoglobin levels. Most important of these are iron, vitamins B6, B9 (folic acid), B12, and vitamin C, which is important for enhancing the absorption of iron. The recommended daily allowances are:

Foods that are rich sources of iron, vitamins B6, B9, and B12

Herbs. How to increase hemoglobin? Certain herbs contain iron or increase its absorption thereby increasing hemoglobin levels.

Chitosan is a dietary fiber from shellfish. A study showed that patients with kidney failure given chitosan were shown to reduce high cholesterol, improve anemia, and improve physical strength, appetite, and sleep.

2. Foods to Avoid

Foods that are rich in calcium like milk and cheese and high fiber foods as well as beverages like coffee, tea, and alcohol should be avoided or taken in small quantities because these prevent absorption of iron. Gluten-containing foods like pasta, bread, and wheat products also cause anemia.

3. Blood Transfusion

How to increase hemoglobin on severely low hemoglobin levels? Blood transfusion is a safe and common medical procedure where blood or blood products are transferred by way of an intravenous line into a blood vessel. It is given to patients in case of loss of blood due to:

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