World Blood Donor Day is observed on June 14 to promote awareness about the importance of blood donation. Thousands of people need a blood transfusion for various reasons like surgery and trauma injuries. Many patients with cancer also require a blood transfusion. People have this misconception that the blood level will decrease in their bodies due to blood donation. Regular donation usually contains about 450 ml of blood, which is approximately eight per cent of the blood volume of the average adult, and the body replaces this volume within 24 to 48 hours.
Therefore, blood donation is an act of kindness that should be done by all those who are physically fit to do so.
However, you need to take care of your diet before you donate blood. The donors should make sure that they eat healthy food before and after donating blood. On the occasion of World Blood Donor Day, let us tell you what a blood donor should eat before and after donating blood. Following these tips is very important for every donor in order to avoid physical weakness or dizziness after donating blood.
What to eat before donating blood
According to a report published in Healthline, if you are going to donate blood, then you need to keep yourself hydrated before and after donating blood. According to the American Red Cross, you should drink 2 cups of water before donating blood.
Additionally, you can feel fatigued due to low iron levels in the body. Iron is important because it helps your body to make haemoglobin. Iron levels also drop in your body when you donate blood. Therefore, you need to eat food items which are rich in iron. Food items like chickpeas, pumpkin seeds, green peas, meat, cashews and almonds, sunflower seeds, wholemeal bread, brown rice, spinach and fish are rich in iron.
Blood donors should also eat citrus fruits like kiwi, pineapple and mango. These fruits contain Vitamin C which helps the human body in absorbing plant-based iron.
What not to eat/drink before donating blood
The consumption of certain food items should be avoided before donating blood. High-fat foods should be avoided before donating blood. Additionally, avoid drinking alcohol before donating blood as it can make you dehydrated.
What to eat after donating blood
After donating blood, you can have a light snack and something to drink. This will help stabilize your blood sugar and fluid levels. You should also drink an additional four cups of water over the next 24 hours and avoid alcohol consumption to make up for your fluid loss. Blood donors should also eat iron-rich foods which will help restore the iron levels in your body.
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