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Shëndeti

Iron deficiency or chronic diseases? Here's how to spot the cause of anemia

Iron deficiency or chronic diseases? Here's how to spot the cause of anemia

Anemia is a health problem related to an excessively low number of red blood cells or a low amount of hemoglobin.

The latter is an iron-rich protein that binds to oxygen in the lungs and transports it to every tissue and cell.

The global figures for anemia are extremely high.

This disease affects 1.93 billion people or 27% of the world's population.

Available data from  the World Bank,  the World Health Organization,  UNICEF  or  the Institute of Public Health  provide an overview of the spread of anemia in our country.

Thus, in Albania the percentage of women affected by anemia is 32.8 percent.

The prevalence of anemia in pregnant women is 31%.

Data show that the prevalence of anemia is higher in rural areas than in urban areas.

However, it decreases with the increase in the educational level of the mother and the wealth index.

The most widespread type of disease is that caused by  iron deficiency .

The disease appears when a person does not have enough iron in the body or iron absorption is at a poor level.

The second type is anemia caused by  vitamin deficiency.

The disease appears in the absence of vitamin B12 or folic acid.

Aplastic anemia  is rare but occurs when the body stops producing enough red blood cells.

This happens as a result of infections, exposure to toxic substances, autoimmune diseases and narcotic substances.

Hemolytic anemia  results from the breakdown of red blood cells in the blood or in the spleen.

This can occur as a result of autoimmune diseases or inherited disorders.

Anemia as a result of a chronic disease is a secondary consequence of diseases such as cancer, diseases of the kidneys, liver, thyroid, rheumatism and others.

Anemia as a result of a chronic disease occurs when the metabolism of iron in the body is alienated.

In simpler terms, the body goes on the defensive as a result of inflammation in the immune system, which causes a drop in hemoglobin and poor iron absorption.

In this case the hemoglobin levels are unchanged and slightly lower than the normal which is 9.5 mg/dl.

For example, if anemia occurs as a result of a cancer, the cancer cells produce certain substances that damage or destroy the red blood cells.

Anemia of chronic disease affects both women and men alike.

Iron deficiency anemia affects women more.

Anemia from chronic diseases is not treated with iron supplements.

Any amount of extra iron taken can be harmful depending on the disease.

Iron supplements are useful only in the case of anemia caused by iron deficiency.

Anemia caused by iron deficiency can be detected thanks to blood tests.

However, it is the symptoms observed by the patients themselves that tell the most about the disease.

As we mentioned, fatigue even after sleep, constant cold, yellowing of hands and feet, fever and lethargy are some of them.

Treatment of anemia caused by iron deficiency begins with improving the nutritional regime.

Good food sources of iron are:

Spinach, citrus fruits, blueberries, oysters, peanut butter, pumpkin seeds, beans and lentils, dried fruit.

As for supplements, they can only be obtained through a doctor.

AgroWeb.org advises you to accompany the above foods with foods with vitamin C, such as citrus fruits, peppers, strawberries, etc.