Reduce The Risk Of Heart Disease
In the blood there is a component called iron. Iron is an effect on the thickness of the blood. High iron levels cause blood thicker. Besides the increase in iron levels can also accelerate the process of oxidation of cholesterol.
It can affect in blood and increase friction when blood flow in the blood vessels thus increasing the risk of the occurrence of resistance in the blood vessels. According to the American Journal of Epidemiology, by donating blood you can lower the risk of heart disease by 33% and reduce the risk of heart attack by 88%.
Researchers from the American Medical Association said that by donating blood every six months can reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke at the age of 43 to 61 years.
Health Benefits Of Donating Blood
Blood donation not only makes the receivers life good but also helps the donor to maintain good health. The health benefits of donating blood are mentioned below.
Health benefits of blood donation include reduced risk of hemochromatosis. Hemochromatosis is a health condition that arises due to excess absorption of iron by the body. This may be inherited or may be caused due to alcoholism, anemia or other disorders. Regular blood donation may help in reducing iron overload. Make sure that the donor meets the standard blood donation eligibility criteria.
Blood donation helps in lowering the risk of cancer. By donating blood the iron stores in the body are maintained at healthy levels. A reduction in the iron level in the body is linked with low cancer risk.
Maintains Healthy Heart & Liver
Blood donation is beneficial in reducing the risk of heart and liver ailments caused by the iron overload in the body. Intake of iron-rich diet may increase the iron levels in the body, and since only limited proportions can be absorbed, excess iron gets stored in heart, liver, and pancreas. This, in turn, increases the risk of cirrhosis, liver failure, damage to the pancreas, and heart abnormalities like irregular heart rhythms. Blood donation helps in maintaining the iron levels and reduces the risk of various health ailments.
Stimulates Blood Cell Production
Giving Blood Can Help Your Liver Stay Healthy
Another danger of iron overload is the health of your liver. In recent years, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease , the hepatic expression of metabolic syndrome, has reached epidemic proportions, reports the National Center for Biotechnology Information.
Research has linked too much iron with NAFLD, Hepatitis C and other liver diseases and infections. Though there are many other factors involved in these problems, donating blood can help relieve some of those iron stores and avoid extra issues in your liver.
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Does Donating Blood Help Lower Cholesterol
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Giving Blood Can Reduce Harmful Iron Stores
One in every two hundred people in the U.S. is affected by a condition called hemochromatosis and most dont even know it, according to Patenaude. Hemochromatosis is a disease that causes an iron overload and is labeled as the most common genetic disease among Caucasians by the Mayo Clinic.
A committed blood donor herself, Patenaude recommends donation as a way to reduce the bodys extra iron stores. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the removal of red blood cells by phlebotomy is the preferred treatment for patients with excess iron in their blood.
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Be Heart Healthy: Give Blood Every Time You Are Eligible
On average people give blood only 1.5 times a year, but you are eligible to donate every 56 days up to 6 times a year. If everyone donated Just One More time it would cut out blood shortages.
Make a great decision for your health and the health of your community. Become a regular blood or platelet donor. Plan your next heart healthy donation.
Surprising Health Benefits Of Donating Blood
By Brianna Flavin on 02/01/2018
Every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood. Every day, roughly 36,000 units of red blood cells are needed in the U.S., the Red Cross reports. Simply put, thats a lot of blood. Patients with sickle cell diseases or cancer need blood transfusions throughout their treatments, and a single car accident victim can require up to 100 pints of blood.
Since blood cant be made or manufactured, these patients depend on blood donors for their very lives.
This might be something you already knew about. Youve probably seen the posters and the big mobile blood bankscommunity blood drives are often in the public eye. We often hear about the importance of donating blood as it relates to the recipients. One blood donation could help up to three patients.
But what are the benefits of donating blood for the donor? We dont often hear about that side of the arrangement. While the impact is a little less obvious, there are several health advantages that come as a result of giving blood.
Perhaps you are considering donating blood but are unsure of the effect it will have on your body. Or maybe youve done it before and are curious about how it might impact you if you donate regularly. In any case, you may be surprised at some of the advantages. We consulted with health professionals to identify some of the biggest benefits of donating blood.
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How Does Blood Donation Lower Cholesterol
When a person donates blood, it lowers LDL cholesterol and lipids due to the loss of blood volume, which dilutes the overall levels of the body.
Donating blood, especially during this time of the pandemic, is important.
There are those who are in need of blood after a bad accident or need it because of their illness.
No matter the reason, one should do their part to give blood when they have the opportunity.
Does Donating Blood Make You Gain Weight
As strange as it might sound, there is a common myth that donating blood will make you gain weight. In fact, the opposite is true giving blood can help you lose weight. In a statement from the University of California, it was suggested that a donor could lose up to 650 calories with each pint of blood donated. Thats a significant number of calories to burn in one go.
To put that into perspective, an average person burns up to 100 calories per mile by doing a rigorous run. So, to get the same benefits, not only will you have to run every mile at around 10 minutes, but you will also have to do it a total of 6 or 7 times.
Of course, there are limitations as to how many calories youll be able to burn considering the health requirements and the long recovery period times. Lets put it this way, giving blood is the furthest thing from a weight loss solution, but you can rest assured that it wont make you gain weight.
Blood donors are in high demand all around the world. Simply put, giving blood saves lives. The process today is also so well regulated, there is absolutely nothing to worry about other than a little bruising around the injection and perhaps slight light-headedness. If you are contemplating giving blood, make sure you follow the recommended recovery times and best-practices. You will be just fine.
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Emotional And Mental Health
Helping others can have a positive effect on the people performing the good deed.
According to the Mental Health Foundation, a charity based in the United Kingdom, people who help others may experience:
- more emotional well-being
These checks may highlight any underlying conditions people are not aware of and help them seek treatment sooner.
Research has looked into the effects of blood donation on heart health.
A larger scale 2019 study looked at the effects on heart health in 159,934 people who were regular blood donors.
The study found that regular, long-term blood donation had a protective effect against cardiovascular disease, although only in females.
Also, participants with a high frequency of donation had a lower chance of cardiovascular disease compared with low frequency donors.
People may experience temporary physical side effects of donating blood.
Health Benefits Of Getting A Cholesterol Screening During A Blood Donation
One of the health benefits of being a regular blood donor is receiving a cholesterol screening every time you give to help others live. There is both HDL cholesterol and LDL cholesterol in your blood.
The cholesterol screening OneBlood provides is a combination of both the good HDL and bad LDL cholesterol present in your blood stream at the time you donate. Whereas it is not a diagnostic test done with fasting, it is a good indicator if you need to be concerned about a high level and seek medical follow up.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states: Total cholesterol levels less than 200 milligrams per deciliter are considered desirable for adults. A reading between 200 and 239 mg/dL is considered borderline high and a reading of 240 mg/dL and above is considered high. LDL cholesterol levels should be less than 100 mg/dL.
This is why, if your OneBlood cholesterol screening shows an elevated level, you should have a fasting cholesterol test performed by your doctor to determine your actual LDL/HDL ratio. Too much LDL cholesterol in your blood can increase your risk for heart attack and stroke.
The Mayo Clinic Staff states that the same heart-healthy lifestyle changes that can lower your cholesterol can help prevent you from having high cholesterol in the first place. To help prevent high cholesterol, you can: Eat a low-salt diet that emphasizes fruits, vegetables, and whole grains
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What Is High Cholesterol
Cholesterol is a waxy substance, also known as a lipid, in the blood that is needed for the body to build healthy cells.
Its non-threatening until it starts to increase, which then can build up in the blood and cause difficulties in blood flow, forming a blood clot and causing a heart attack or stroke.
As scary as it sounds, high cholesterol can be treated and isnt fatal once you follow a regular diet and lifestyle. And studies show that donating blood regularly can help lower cholesterol levels in the blood.
According to this study, they looked at 82 participants with 52 of them being regular blood donors and 30 of them non-donors.
Reduces Harmful Iron Stores
Many of the critical benefits of giving blood are linked to the reduction of iron in the body. This is due to a condition called hemochromatosis, which is the buildup of iron. Its a genetic disease commonly found in Caucasians.
Although it might not sound all that bad, excess iron can lead to severe conditions, including increased risk of heart disease, liver disease, and cancer.
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Giving Blood Can Reveal Potential Health Problems
While it isnt the same thing as a trip to the doctor, donating blood can be another way to keep an eye on your cardiovascular health. Youll receive a mini-physical prior to the blood draw, in which someone will check your pulse, blood pressure, body temperature, hemoglobin and more. This can sometimes shed light on issues you didnt even know about.
If your blood is too low in iron, the clinic will tell you and wont draw your blood, says Jan Patenaude, dietician and certified LEAP therapist. They will also inform you of any other blood issues they notice or if anything seems unusual. An occasional check up on your blood quality could be the key to spotting a health issue before it becomes life-threatening.
Experts Say That Donating On A Regular Basis Will Lower Cholesterol Levels
How was the study performed revealing that blood donation could improve high cholesterol levels.
Participants had 10 mL of venous blood drawn from each of them, which was transferred into tubes and left to stand in room temperature until it clotted and retracted.
After this part of the experiment, the serum was separated and transferred into cryotubes then aliquoted and stored at -72 degrees celsius.
The results of the experiment were that Markers of increased cardiovascular risk appear to be lower in regular blood donors compared with non-donors as reflected by significantly lower total cholesterol and LDL levels.
Although HDL appears to be significantly higher in the non-donor population, the LDL/HDL ratio which is a better predictor of increased cardiovascular risk is lower in regular blood donors.
Meaning those who regularly donated blood showed signs of low cardiovascular risk along with low total cholesterol and LDL levels.
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Reduces Iron Levels For Those With Hemochromatosis
The body needs iron to produce red blood cells. However, around 1 million people in the U.S. have type 1 hereditary hemochromatosis. People with this and other types of hemochromatosis have too much iron in their blood.
The excess iron can deposit into different organs of the body, such as the liver and heart, and affect the way those organs function.
According to a 2003 article by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , people with hemochromatosis can benefit from phlebotomy, which is a similar process to donating blood.
People with this condition are allowed to donate blood. In other words, for those with hemochromatosis, donating blood can be a treatment option as well as a way of helping others.
Not all agencies allow donations from people with this condition, but many use their blood in the general donation pool.
What Does My Total Cholesterol Result Mean
High cholesterol is considered an indicator of cardiovascular disease risk. For adults age 20 years of age, the desirable level is less than 200 mg/dL. Values of 200 to 239 mg/dL are borderline high risk, and values above 239 mg/dL are considered high risk for cardiovascular disease. If your value is above 200 mg/dL you should consult with your physician.
For adolescents under 20 years of age, the desirable level is less than 170 mg/dL. Values of 170 to 199 mg/dL are borderline high risk, and values above 199 mg/dL are considered high risk for cardiovascular disease. If your value is above 170 mg/dL, you should also consult with your physician.
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Coronavirus And Donating Blood
There is no evidence that the new coronavirus, called SARS-CoV-2, can be transmitted through blood. Donations are especially needed from people who recovered from COVID-19, the illness caused by SARS-CoV-2, because their plasma, the liquid part of the blood, likely has antibodies that can fight the virus.
Blood donations have fallen off during the pandemic. In response, the FDA loosened the eligibility for donations from men who have sex with men. They now can give blood if theyâve not had sex with such partners in the last 3 months instead of 12 months.
Giving Blood May Reduce Your Risk Of Developing Cancer
In an average, completely healthy person, the link between giving blood and decreased cancer risk is slim. But research does support a reduced risk of cancer for blood donors with different maladies, one of which is hemochromatosis.
Phlebotomy was found to be an iron-reduction method that is associated with lower cancer risk and mortality, according to a study published by the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. The study focused on patients affected by peripheral arterial disease , which the Mayo Clinic describes as a common circulatory problem. PAD patients who regularly donated blood had a lower risk of developing cancer than those who did not.
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Is It Possible To Recover Faster
To add to that, we must bring back the subject of iron deficiency. As mentioned previously, blood donation can lead to decreased levels of iron in the body. Such a condition can lead to you growing weak and developing anemia.
As such, you will not be able to donate blood if your iron stores are significantly reduced. Each transfusion will take away at least 200-250 milligrams of iron. Which, unlike blood volume , can take up to 6 months to recover completely.