This Blog is about the Indian diet plan for Anemia (Increase Haemoglobin). Indian culture is the one where we all put others before us. Mothers are the epitome of love, care, and sacrifice. She will always see the needs of others before hers, at the cost of her own health. This results in her body being nutritionally inadequate.
Insufficient iron is one such condition that we generally notice in Indian females due to lack of a balanced diet. These days not just females but even males face anemia. So let us check this Indian diet plan for Anemia (Increase Haemoglobin) to tackle it.
“Anaemia” is a medical condition in which a person has a lower-than-normal number of red blood cells or the quantity of hemoglobin. It affects the capacity of their blood to carry oxygen and can lead to a number of health problems including death. Anemia in women and children has been a major problem in India for half a century. New Global Nutrition report of 2017 says, 51 % of women of reproductive age suffer from anemia in India.
Causes of anemia:
- Folate, vitamin B12 and vitamin A deficiencies
- Chronic inflammation
- Parasitic infections
- Advanced kidney disorders
- Iron deficiency is the most common cause of anemia globally.
- Women in the childbearing years are particularly susceptible to iron-deficiency anemia. It is because of the blood loss from menstruation and the increased blood supply demands during pregnancy.
- Older adults have a greater risk of developing anemia because of poor diet and other medical conditions.
Categorization of Anaemia:
There are more than 400 types of anemia. To simplify they are divided according to the main reason for low iron.
- Caused by blood loss
- Decreased or faulty red blood cell production
- Caused by the destruction of red blood cells
Symptoms of Anaemia:
- Pale skin
- Short of breath
- Cold hands and feet
- Heart palpitations/chest pain
Treatment of anemia:
It depends on the root cause of anemia.
- If it is due to an iron deficiency, a supplement and changes to your diet are sufficient.
- Antibiotics – to treat infections
- Iron injections or infusions
- Blood transfusion
- Hormones – for women and teenage girls who experience heavy menstrual cycles
Daily iron needs vary depending on your age and sex. The general recommended dietary allowances for adult men and women over the age of 51 are 8 mg a day, and for women aged 19 to 50, it is 18 mg a day.
So this was the general information in relation to Anemia. Before we move towards Indian diet plan for Anemia (Increase Haemoglobin), let us first see in details what can we include in our diet to maintain normal iron levels in the body.
Foods to Include in Indian diet plan for Anemia:
Green leafy vegetables
Dark leafy greens are among the best sources of iron. They include spinach, kale, methi, amaranth, shepu and many more. Eating dark green leafy vegetables can have some issues too. Some greens like spinach and kale are high in iron and at the same time high in oxalates too. Oxalates are compounds that prevent the absorption of iron.
The iron in leafy vegetables is best absorbed if combined with Vitamin C. Eating leafy greens with foods that contain vitamin C such as lemons, oranges, red peppers, and strawberries may increase iron absorption. Always remember to squeeze a lemon before eating your greens.
Meat and poultry:
All meat and poultry contain iron. Red meat, lamb, and venison are the best sources. Poultry and chicken have lower amounts. Eating meat or poultry with leafy greens can increase iron absorption.
Shellfish such as oysters, clams, and shrimp are good sources. Most fish contain iron. Fish high in iron include sardines, tuna, salmon, halibut, perch, and haddock. Canned fishes are also good sources of iron, but also high in calcium. Calcium binds with iron and reduces its absorption. Foods high in calcium shouldn’t be eaten at the same time as iron-rich foods. Do not combine calcium-rich foods include raw milk, yogurt, kefir, cheese, sardines, broccoli, and tofu with seafood.
As we saw non vegetarian sources are much richer in iron than vegetarian sources. Iron from non-vegetarian sources is more easily absorbed in the body. Thus it is a struggle for vegetarians to fulfill their iron requirements. For such population, there are foods available which are fortified with iron. These foods are:
- Orange juice
- Ready-to-eat cereals
- Foods made from fortified refined flour such as white bread
- Foods made from fortified cornmeal
- White rice
Beans are good sources of iron for vegetarians and meat eaters alike. They’re also inexpensive and versatile. Some iron-rich options are:
- Kidney beans
- Black-eyed peas
- Pinto beans
- Black beans
Nuts and seeds:
Many types of nuts and seeds are good sources of iron. Can either be eaten as it is or sprinkled on salads or yogurt. When choosing nuts and seeds, choose raw varieties whenever possible. Few examples are:
- Garden cress seeds (Halim Dana) – the Best source of iron
- Pumpkin seeds
- Hemp seeds
- Pine nuts
- Sunflower seeds
Foods to Avoid to prevent Anaemia:
- Foods containing caffeine like coffee and colas.
- Tannin-containing foods such as tea, grapes, corn, and sorghum.
- Foods that contain phytates or phytic acids, such as brown rice and whole-grain wheat products
- Foods that contain oxalic acids, such as peanuts, parsley, and chocolate
Indian diet plan for Anemia (Increase Haemoglobin) :
Here is a sample Indian diet plan for Anemia (Increase Haemoglobin). The diet plan is designed by including the foods that were previously mentioned as useful in this article.
Sample diet plan:
1 glass tangy green juice (spinach + kale +pomegranate + lemon juice + orange)
+ 4 raisin / manuke
1 glass milk + 1 garden cress seeds
+ Broken wheat porridge ( Use jaggery instead of sugar)
1 Fruit (Orange/ Sweet Lime/ Watermelon/ Musk Melon/ Berries/ pomegranate )
+ 2 Dates
1 cup Salad with French dressing
+ 2 Chapatis
+ 1 Cup Fortified rice
dal 1 cup
+ 1 cup any green leafy Vegetable with tomato
+ 1 cup curd OR 1 – 2 pcs fish or poultry recipe
1 cup green tea (caffeine free)
+ Mix dal and fenugreek leaves Chilla OR Grilled fish Fingers
+ cashew and jaggery chikki / Roasted channa + Gurr pieces/groundnut + jaggery chikki or laddo
1 cup Vegetable soup or chicken soup
+ 2 pcs Chicken Roll
1 cup Peas Pulao
Green Leafy Vegetable 1 cup
+ 1 bowl Rajma
-1 glass milk with garden cress seeds.
So this was a sample of Indian diet plan for Anemia. While this diet plan will help you by supplementing Iron in your body, It will also help to increase your hemoglobin.
Tips to increase iron absorption in the body:
- Refraining from eating foods rich in calcium or phytates with those rich in iron.
- Eating iron-rich foods alongside those rich in vitamin C.
- Cooking foods for shorter periods.
- Cooking food in Iron vessels.
A little care while combining the foods helps in proper absorption and utilization of nutrients. Iron deficiency if detected early requires only the right food for iron to get back to normal. Consulting a certified professional for the same makes your life easier. Hope this Indian diet plan for Anemia helps you for starters. All the best!
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