Anemia – Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Preventive Measures

| Author: Manoja Kalakanti

Anaemia is considered a severe condition where the count of red blood cells dramatically falls, which disables body tissues from getting inadequate oxygen. It is unpredictable by nature and ranges from mild to severe and from temporary to permanent. If you are anemic, you will have a low haemoglobin level, which is regarded as the prime protein present in your red blood cells.

 What do you know about Anemia?

Research has shown that anemia is a blood condition prevalent among the people of the US, and comprises women, young children, and people with pre-morbidity. During pregnancy, women tend to have an iron deficiency which causes anemia, and it mostly happens because of excessive blood loss during their periods. Thus, it is essential to be well aware of the details of anemia and its effects, and so you should learn more about anemia.

What is Anemia?

Anemia is a health condition when there is a massive reduction of red blood cells in your body. It decreases oxygen intake as the presence of haemoglobin or hematocrit in your red blood cells carries oxygen to your body’s multiple tissues, and anemia indicates the possibilities that the tissues are not getting enough oxygen.

How can you describe Anemia?

Anemia can affect millions of people worldwide, and those who are already suffering from chronic diseases like cancer mostly get affected by it, and they are at high risk. There are certain things you should remember about anemia, such as:

  • Adults suffering from any chronic medical condition like kidney failure are more prone to anemia
  • Anemia can be a hereditary condition as well, which may have passed through your genes, and this can even affect your infant/infants from birth
  • Anemia primarily affects women as they experience blood loss through periods every month, which puts them at risk of iron deficiency anemia.

Various Types Of Anemia

Certain types of anemia are mild, but some are severe and can enhance a painful medical condition. When you are affected by anemia, your body won’t be able to make enough red blood cells or cells that won’t work correctly, leading to weakness, shortness of breath, and others.

What are the types of Anemia?

Aplastic (Hypoplastic) Anemia

You should be aware that blood cells are made up of stem cells in your bone marrow, so when you are suffering from Aplastic Anemia, blood cells present in your bone marrow will get damaged, disabling you from creating new blood cells. It can be temporary as well as hereditary in nature, and it includes factors like:

  • Chemicals (pesticides, arsenic)
  • Infections (hepatitis, HIV)
  • Auto-Immune diseases (lupus, arthritis)
  • Medical treatments of cancer (radiation, chemotherapy)

Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS)

It occurs when your bone marrow gets damaged, and it takes away your ability to make enough blood cells, and MDS is regarded as a type of Cancer. Recent studies show that there is a specific type of gene that can cause MDS, which is generally transmitted through parents. There is a long list of factors that initiate MDS like:

  • Severe Congenital Neutropenia
  • Chemical (Benzene)
  • Radiation/Chemotherapy
  • Fanconi Anemia
  • Shwachman Diamond Syndrome
  • Platelet Disorder

Sideroblastic Anemia

It is a specific type of blood disorder where your body cannot use enough iron to make haemoglobin. The excess iron that gets built up in your body causes abnormal red blood cells known as sideroblasts. Moreover, this type of anemia can be further categorized into:

  • Acquired Sideroblastic Anemia

It can be caused due to the presence of harmful chemicals or drugs in your body.

  • Hereditary Sideroblastic Anemia

It can be caused due to the low production of normal haemoglobin caused by a gene mutation.

Thus, some of its suggested treatments are:

  • Vitamin B6 therapy
  • Bone – marrow or stem cells transplantation

Autoimmune Hemolytic Anemia

Anemia occurs when your immune system gets affected when red cells get destroyed much faster than expected. Few factors can cause this blood disorder, such as:

  • Autoimmune diseases (Lupus)
  • Medications (Penicillin, Quinine, Methyldopa)

It has been researched that only steroid drugs can fix your immune system and cure Autoimmune Hemolytic Anemia.

Symptoms of Anemia

It is a medical condition where the count of red blood cells or haemoglobin is less than usual, and therefore, in men, the haemoglobin level is less than 13.5 gram/100 ml. In contrast, in women, the level decreases to 12.0 gram/100 ml. Moreover, it has also been researched that some patients suffering from anemia tend to show little or no symptoms.

Symptoms that occur due to anemia

People who are suffering from anemia generally experience some common symptoms such as:

  • Feeling weak and tired all day long
  • Turning pale or having dull skin
  • Fatigue
  • Heart palpitations
  • Shortness of breath
  • Developing heart issues
  • Severe hair fall
  • Mood swing
  • Hypertension or palpitations
  • Lack of energy

If the symptoms mentioned above worsen, you should immediately visit a doctor and undergo some tests like a blood test called Complete Blood Cell Count (CBC). Your treatment and diet will vary according to the results. To know more about CBC, you should refer to Complete Blood Count.

Causes of Anemia

Anemia’s causes vary accordingly, and there the prime and most common cause is iron deficiency. It is a common condition that can occur in both men and women of any age and ethnicity, and those who get affected are always at risk of having iron deficiency and low red blood cell count.

What are the causes of Anemia?

Excessive Internal Bleeding

Either a severe accident or extreme medical condition can sometimes cause excessive internal bleeding, and the list of such medical conditions are:

  • Colon cancer
  • Polyps in the colon or intestines
  • Ulcer in your stomach

Pregnancy/Menstrual Blood Loss

It is a widespread phenomenon among mid-aged women or girls where they tend to lose excessive blood during childbirth, and it happens primarily due to iron deficiency. For this, a pregnant woman is always advised to have more iron content food to avoid delivery issues.


Endometriosis is a disease common among women where there occurs a heavy loss of blood. This is invisible because it appears in the internal part of the abdomen and pelvis.

Inability to Intake Iron Content

Sometimes, your body will stop absorbing iron due to any surgery or disorder in the intestine. Celiac disease or intestinal surgery like gastric bypass can limit the intake of iron in your body, even if you take enough iron in your daily diet.

Inadequate Consumption of Iron

It is essential to have iron-infused meals every day to avoid medical conditions like mild or severe anemia. There should be an inclusion of high iron foods like meats, eggs, and green leafy vegetables in your daily diet to fix it.

If you are getting affected by it, you need to fix it as soon as possible or have a proper diagnosis of your health via blood tests or physical examinations to acquire an appropriate cure. It can sometimes be a cause of magnesium deficiency, and so to know more about it, you should read Everything about Magnesium Deficiency And How To Avoid Chronic Diseases.

Home Remedies And Nutritional Requirements of Anemia

Our world is filled with anemic women and children, where acute iron deficiency can cause many complications. You can see that the most affected ones are people who maintain an imbalanced or poor diet. It is essential to have a count on our nutritional requirements and maintain a balanced diet.

What are the home remedies or nutritional supplements of Anemia?

  • Yogurt with turmeric

It is suggested by doctors to have yogurt twice a day by mixing a tablespoon of turmeric, which will help balance the nutrient count in your body, and it is adequate for those who experience swelling and cold/clammy skin.

  • Green Vegetables

Green and leafy vegetables like spinach, celery, and broccoli contain high amounts of chlorophyll, which effectively treat iron deficiency.

  • Juices

Doctors often prescribe anemic patients to have beetroots or pomegranate juice because beetroots contain a high amount of folic acid; and pomegranates, which are fused with iron and other minerals like copper and potassium, help build energy in you and support healthy blood flow.

  • Sesame Seeds

Sesame seeds in your diet can increase the iron content. The best way to have it is by soaking the sesame seeds in water for an hour and two and then making a paste out of it and having it with some honey regularly.

  • Dry Fruits (Raisin, Dates)

These fruits are a combination of iron and vitamin C, enabling the body to quickly and effectively absorb iron. So, it is advisable to include them in your breakfast or mid-day meal regularly.

If anemia can be healed by acquiring home remedies, you should opt for it instead of going for some expensive and time-consuming medical treatments.


It should be noted that red blood cells are essential to regulate our body functions and keep it active and going. So, if you are experiencing any underlying symptoms of anemia, you should opt for home remedies or check with the doctors.


  1. How does anemia affect your body?

If you are currently suffering from anemia, you should be aware that your body cannot have enough oxygen, or your blood cannot transmit it adequately to your body tissues.

  1. What is the fastest way to cure anemia?

The fastest way to cure anemia is by adding green and leafy vegetables to your diet regularly. Apart from it, if it is feasible, then you can add dry fruits like raisin and dates to your breakfast or mid-day meal daily to get the best result

  1. How does a person become anemic?

When your body fails to have enough haemoglobin or produce adequate amounts of red blood cells, you are at risk of becoming anemic, which mainly causes you to bleed profusely due to some accident or medical condition.

  1. What are the three vital causes of anemia?

The three vital causes of anemia are deficiency of iron, vitamin, or any sudden bone marrow disease. Apart from that, Sickle Cell Anemia and Aplastic Anemia are also ubiquitous, and then proper treatment is required to heal your condition.

  1. What will happen if anemia is not treated?

If you don’t take anemia seriously and leave it unattended or untreated, then the mild symptoms can get worse and severe and sometimes, can even cause death.

6. How can you fix anemia?

Artificial oxygen intake and injection of oral and intravenous fluids can reduce pain and treat your other complications quickly. In some cases, doctors can even recommend blood transfusions, folic acid supplements and antibiotics to fix anemia.

  1. What is the best treatment for anemia?

If you are suffering from severe anemia, then the best and possible treatment for it is blood transfusion or injection of synthetic hormone, which is mainly produced by our kidneys (erythropoietin) to enable proper stimulation of the red blood cells.

  1. How can I prevent anemia at home?

The best way to prevent anemia at home is to have iron-fused foods like leafy vegetables, meat, poultry, seafood, beans, and nuts, or possible home remedies like yogurt and turmeric.

  1. What can I give my child for anemia?

It is essential to feed your toddlers more iron-rich foods because it is their growing stage, and you should be cautious about it. This should be done to decrease their risk of developing iron deficiency.

  1. Any mode to get away with anemia?

Yes, there is a way to get rid of anemia, but it is costly and painful. It is known as bone marrow transplant or stem cell transplant. Here, you have to get hold of a donor who makes healthy cells.

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