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Iron Deficiency Anemia And Treatment Health Essay

Info: 1197 words (5 pages) Nursing Essay
Published: 11th Feb 2020

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Tagged: anemia

This paper explores five sources that report what iron-deficiency anemia is along with how to treat the ailment. More specifically this paper looks at what role vegetables play in treatment of iron-deficiency anemia. All sources remain consistent in the role and how helpful vegetables are in fighting iron-deficiency anemia. Iron-deficiency anemia treatment from Heart, Lung, and Blood institute will provide that background of what iron-deficiency anemia is and how to treat it. Ross (2002), Johnson and Shinde (2010) all cover the role of food and more specifically the role of vegetables in treatment of iron-deficiency anemia.

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What is iron- deficiency anemia? According to Iron-deficiency anemia treatment from Heart, Lung, and Blood institute (2010); iron-deficiency anemia is the most prevalent type of anemia on earth. This type makes red blood cells (RBCs) that are below average size, thus the term microcytic is used when referring to them. RBCs are not only smaller in size and amount, but contain a below average amount of hemoglobin, which makes cells pale. Because RBCs are needed to transport oxygen throughout the body, anemia results in lower amounts of oxygen reaching the cells and tissues, disturbing their function. The distinction between iron-deficiency and anemia is important. They often go hand in hand, but people can be iron deficient without being anemic. Iron-deficiency is a reduction of iron storage while anemia refers to the reduction of iron in the RBCs. These reduced RBCs are not able to transport enough oxygen from the lungs to the tissues, causing a shortage in energy being released from the cells and every cell in the body will feel the effect.

What causes iron-deficiency anemia? According to Iron-deficiency anemia treatment from Heart, Lung, and Blood institute (2010); iron-deficiency anemia may be caused by the following: diets low in iron due to iron being obtained from foods in our diet. A person unable to have a balanced high iron diet may suffer from some extent of iron-deficiency anemia. An increased iron requirement as well as an increased red blood cell production is required when the body is going through changes such as growth spurts in children and adolescents. Gastrointestinal tract abnormalities, malabsorption of iron is common after some forms of gastrointestinal surgeries. Most of the iron taken in by foods is absorbed in the upper small intestine. Any abnormalities in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract could affect iron intake and result in iron-deficiency anemia. Loss of blood can cause a decrease of iron and result in iron-deficiency anemia. Sources of blood loss may include GI bleeding, menstrual bleeding, or injury.

What are the symptoms of iron-deficiency anemia? According to Iron-deficiency anemia treatment from Heart, Lung, and Blood institute (2010), the following are the most common symptoms of iron-deficiency anemia: abnormal paleness or lack of color of the skin, irritability, lack of energy, increased heart rate (tachycardia), sore or swollen tongue, enlarged spleen. The symptoms of iron-deficiency anemia may resemble other blood conditions or medical problems.

How is iron-deficiency anemia diagnosed? According to Iron-deficiency anemia treatment from Heart, Lung, and Blood institute(2010), iron-deficiency anemia can be found from general findings on a complete medical history and a physical, like complaints of tiring easily, abnormal paleness or lack of color of the skin, or a fast heartbeat (tachycardia). Iron-deficiency anemia is typically found during a medical examination via a blood test that measures the how much hemoglobin (amount of RBC’s) present, as well as the amount of iron in the blood. According to Iron-deficiency anemia treatment from Heart, Lung, and Blood institute (2010), treatment for iron-deficiency anemia: certain treatment for iron-deficiency anemia will be determined by your doctor based on: age, overall health, family and personal medical history, severity of the anemia, cause of the anemia, your opinion or preference.

Iron supplements are just one of the many ways to treat iron-deficiency anemia. Supplements can be taken during the duration of several months to raise iron levels in the blood. Supplements may cause agitation of the stomach along with discoloration of bowel movements. Supplements should be consumed on an empty stomach, or with orange juice, to raise absorption levels.

According to Ross (2002), other treatments include an iron-rich diet. Eating a diet with iron-rich foods can help treat iron-deficiency anemia. Good sources of iron include the following: meats – beef, pork, lamb, liver, and other organ meats also, poultry – chicken, duck, turkey, liver especially dark meat. Fish – shellfish, including clams, mussels, and oysters, sardines, anchovies. Now let’s look at what vegetables are good sources of iron. For example, leafy greens of the cabbage family like broccoli, kale, turnip greens, and collards. Also legumes, such as lima beans and green peas; dry beans and peas, such as pinto beans, black-eyed peas, and canned baked beans are good way to get some iron in your diet. And then there are the grains that are high in iron content such as yeast-leavened whole-wheat bread and rolls, iron-enriched white bread, pasta, rice, and cereals.

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With a vast amount of veggies and fruits around, high iron foods for vegans is abundant. According to Shinde(2010), one should eat the following high iron foods to maintain a healthy life. Food as follows : Freshly baked potato, Cooked Spinach, Green leafy vegetables, Beets, Lima beans, Peas, Broccoli, Turnip greens, Asparagus, Green beans, cooked, Tomato juice, Pumpkin, cooked, Swiss Chard, Canned sweet potatoes, Cooked Bok Choy. Those are mainly just the beans and vegetables that have high iron content to aid in ones high iron diet. Here is a list of high iron fruit: dates, gooseberries, mangoes, apples, papaya, banana, grapes, jack fruit and muskmelon.

Since iron from vegetables sources are poorly absorbed by the body, it is important for vegans to take in more amounts of high iron foods and high iron vegetables. According to Johnson (2010), one can increase how fast the iron is absorbed by eating foods high in vitamin C. For optimal iron absorption in these sources in the body, one should ingest a good amount of vitamin C in the eating plan. Vitamin C increases the rate of absorption of iron in the body, so that its potential in the body is reached.


Instead of taking iron supplements, one can get iron through foods high in iron. High iron vegetables and fruits remain the healthiest way to take in iron. All vegetables are packed full of some nutrients, but certain vegetables are specially known to be high in iron. There are plenty of high iron foods for vegans since there are lot vegetables high in iron. Certain vegetables have iron that is easily absorbed. These types of vegetables are very helpful people with iron-deficiency anemia. Knowing which foods are high in iron is half the battle.


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Anemia is the result of a wide variety of causes that can be isolated, but more often coexist. Globally, the most significant contributor to the onset of anemia is iron deficiency.

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