Anemia affects more than 30 percent of the world’s population, and it is one of the most important worldwide health problems. It has a significant prevalence in both developing and industrialized nations. Causes of anemia include nutritional deficiencies, particularly of iron, vitamin B12, and folate (folic acid); excess blood loss from menstruation or chronic illness and infection; ingestion of toxic substances, such as lead, ethanol, and other compounds; and genetic abnormalities such as thalassemia and sideroblastosis.Anemia is caused by a deficiency in the intake and absorption elements required to make red blood cells. The condition is defined as one in which the blood is deficient in red blood cells, in hemoglobin, or in total volume.

This results in blood that is incapable of meeting the oxygen needs of the body’s tissues. Anemia is characterized by changes in the size and color of red blood cells. Red blood cells, or erythrocytes, are primarily responsible for oxygen transport from the lungs to the body’s many cells. Hemoglobin is an oxygen-carrying protein in the red blood cell that incorporates iron into its structure. Therefore, iron is an essential building block of blood erythrocytes. When red blood cells are larger than normal, the anemia is termed macrocytic, and when they are smaller than normal, it is called microcytic.Normal red cell color is termed normochromic, and if the red cells appear pale, the anemia is called hypochromic. When extensive lab testing is not available for diagnosis, the use of a portable colorimeter can be used to detect anemia. actually promote free radical production, also known as pro-oxidation, increasing the chance for health problems. Those who may benefit most from antioxidants include people dealing with a lot of stress, dieters limiting their calories to 1,200 per day or less, people on a low-fat diet, smokers, older adults, and people with a family history of heart disease or cancer.


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