The Relationship Between Anemia And Nutritional Issues

4592 words - 18 pages

The Relationship Between Anemia and Nutritional Issues


INTRODUCTION
"Anemia can be defined as a decrease in the oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood caused by low hemoglobin concentration" ("A Practical Guide", 1). "Cells in the body require oxygen to fully utilize fuels. The oxygen is transported from the lungs to tissues throughout the body via red blood cells. Oxygen binds to hemoglobin, a specific molecule within each red blood cell. This molecule consists of heme, which is a red pigment, and globin, which is a protein. If the amount of functioning hemoglobin is reduced, a condition known as anemia arises" ("Anemia", 1). "The anemia that may result can take many forms, including that caused by a low iron level (iron deficiency anemia), a vitamin deficiency (megaloblastic anemia), a thyroid deficiency, the premature destruction of red blood cells (hemolytic anemia), replacement of normal bone marrow cells by cancer cells or leukemia (myelophthisic anemia), injury to bone marrow (aplastic anemia), and inborn structural defect in red blood cells (e.g. sickle-cell anemia), inhibition of erythropoietin production by the immune system (anemia of chronic disease), and a normal or high iron level but an inability to manufacture hemoglobin or make use of the iron (sideroblastic anemia)" ("Anemia", 2). There are also several other less common types of anemia including: aplastic anemia, Thalassemia, acquired hemolytic anemia, inherited hemolytic anemia, sickle cell anemia, and anemia caused by miscellaneous factors ("Anemia", 3-4). All of these different types of anemia can be grouped into categories according to their causes and treatments. "In all, more than 400 different forms of anemia have been identified, many of them rare. An anemic person often appears pale and weak and may feel breathless, faint or unusually aware of a pounding heart. The disorder may arise from a number of underlying conditions, some of which may be hereditary, but in many cases poor diet is to blame. Although some forms of anemia require supervised medical care, those stemming from improper nutrition can typically be treated at home once a physician has determined the cause"("Anemia", 1-2). Anemia induced by poor nutrition encompasses a large part of the disease. It is important to investigate anemia related to nutrition, because it is a problem that is present in our lives and there is a lot of action we can take to prevent and treat this disease. The most common forms of nutritional anemia are iron-deficiency anemia, folic-acid deficiency anemia, and Pernicious anemia, which is commonly known as anemia caused by a vitamin B12 deficiency.

REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE

There is an abundant amount of information available on the various types of nutritional anemia and treatments for those diseases. "International Nutritional Anemia Consultative Group was established in 1977 in response to the need for developing a...

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