25 October 2010- Human body needs sufficient iron for transporting oxygen in blood from lungs to the rest of the body in form of hemoglobin. Haemoglobin is an iron-rich protein that gives blood its red color. Iron deficiency or low hemoglobin levels can lead to the state commonly known as anemia
. So, when we seek answer to the question about how to increase iron level in blood, we are actually looking for ways to increase hemoglobin in blood. Before getting some very effective home and herbal remedies to increase iron level in blood, we must know the causes of iron deficiency in blood so that these can be avoided.
Causes of Low Iron Level / Iron Deficiency in blood
Low iron level in blood can lead to tiredness, fatigue, depleted energy levels and a weakened immune system. Iron deficiency in blood can be more frequently seen in babies, toddlers, children, as well as women having menstrual cycle or pregnancy. In general, causes of iron deficiency in blood can be listed as follows.
- - Lack of iron in diet is the most common cause of low hemoglobin in blood. Iron is a dietary mineral derived from iron rich food sources. Not having sufficient amount of iron rich foods can lead to low iron levels in blood.
- - Heavy menstrual bleeding in women can lead to blood loss that in turn causes iron deficiency in their body. Cure of menstrual problems is thus very essential in managing iron level in blood.
- - Sometimes blood loss occurs due to intestinal bleeding in such cases as gastritis, stomach ulcers, duodenal ulcer, hemorrhoids, bloody or tarry stools, uterine fibroids, bladder tumor, stomach or colorectal cancer etc. These medical conditions also are responsible for low iron level in blood.
- -Some people are unable to absorb iron in their bodies. This can be due to various reasons such as small intestine may not be able to absorb iron because of an intestinal disorder like Celiac disease or Crohn’s disease. If part of small intestine has been surgically removed or certain medications such as stomach acid-blockers are given to a person then this may also cause an iron deficiency in blood.
- - Many pregnant women too suffer from iron deficiency as their body needs more iron for the growing fetus as well as for their own increasing blood volume.
That was all about causes of low hemoglobin in blood. However, there are many natural home remedies, some of which are herbal remedies to increase iron level in blood. Know how to increase hemoglobin/ iron level in blood by reading the following tips.
How to Increase Iron Level in Blood?
The most efficient and easy way to increase iron level in blood is to have foods rich in iron. There are also many herbal remedies to increase iron levels. The following sections will tell you about both- the foods rich in iron as well as herbs that can be taken to increase heamoglobin in blood.
Foods Rich in Iron
Increase Iron Level in Blood
Common foods rich in iron are spinach, beetroot, soya beans, apples, almonds, pears, tomatoes, potato peels, figs and alfalfa sprouts
. Potato peels may be dried and toasted to convert them into an interesting snack.
Ensure that your body gets a combination of at least 5-7 of these foods each day in order to increase iron levels. These food are richest in iron when taken in raw form. Cooking might destroy some of the iron content by as much as half. Also avoid tea, coffee, cigarettes and alcohol as much as possible because they inhibit absorption of iron by the body thereby reducing hemoglobin level. Tea, coffee etc. can be supplemented with herbal tea
, fresh juices etc. Some of the foods with richest iron content include:
- Beets: Have a blend of beet juice with apple juice and honey. It is a rich source of beta carotene and iron.
- Bananas: Ripe bananas are one of the richest sources of iron. Have banana with honey twice a day to stimulate production of hemoglobin in blood.
- Foods rich in Vitamin C: This vitamin is believed to improve absorption of iron in the body. Thus, people with low hemoglobin levels must include foods rich in vitamin C in their diets. Foods rich in vitamin C include both fruits and vegetables. Take fruits such as blackcurrant, guava, strawberry, lemon, orange, kiwi fruit, clementine, grapefruit, raspberry, lychees, nectarines, peaches, and mangoes among others. Vegetables rich in vitamin C include peppers, spring greens, brussels sprouts, broccoli, curly kale, gourd, mange-tout peas, cauliflower, tomato, green cabbage, potatoes etc.
- Honey: It is an excellent home remedy to increase iron level in blood. It increases hemoglobin in blood as it is rich in minerals such as manganese, copper and iron.
Herbs to Increase Iron Level in Blood
Herbal Remedies to
Besides foods rich in iron, there are certain herbs that are high in iron or are famous for their blood-building ability. However, before taking these herbs, consult your doctor.
Pau D’Arco bark (Taheebo):
It is an herb from the Amazon rainforest which can rebuild red blood cells in just a month's time. It is also an excellent blood purifier and blood builder that aids liver and endocrine glands.
Nettle (Stinging Nettle):
It is a well known herb rich in iron. It is similar to spinach and watercress (also high in iron content).
It is a plant rich in iron and can be placed in the same category as other algae like spirulina, chlorella, dulse and sea lettuce. This herb is not only high in iron and other minerals, but it is also a rich source of iodine and is commonly used to strengthen thyroid and regulate metabolism.
They contain only modest amounts of iron. However. this herb helps the body absorb iron from foods or supplements. Thus, dandelion is best when taken with an iron supplement or other herbs which contains large amounts of iron, such as spinach
Yellow Dock Root:
This herb has an iron content that might not be as high as nettles or kelp, but is well absorbed by the body and can increase blood iron levels.
Red Clover Flowers & Burdock Root:
They are blood purifiers. These herbs are beneficial when taken with iron supplements or other iron rich herbs. They help body in efficiently absorbing iron obtained from food and other sources.
It is a herb with high iron content as well as a strong flavor. Therefore, only small amounts can be consumed unless the herb is encapsulated and swallowed in pill form. Thyme herb may be used to season foods.
Parsley, cumin, mint (Podina), curry powder and cinnamon also contain notable amounts of iron but not as much as other above mentioned herbs.