What is Vitamin Deficiency Anemia?
Vitamin deficiency anemia is a condition in which the body does not have sufficient healthy red blood cells. Red blood cells provide oxygen to the body tissues. People with severe anemia may have difficulty performing routine activities and feel tired easily.
Vitamin deficiency anemia can occur if your diet does not have enough folate, vitamin B-12, or vitamin C. Or it occurs if the body has trouble absorbing or processing these vitamins.
Symptoms of Vitamin Deficiency Anemia?
Fatigue, shortness of breath, dizziness, pale or yellowish skin, irregular heartbeats, weight loss, numbness or tingling in the hands and feet, muscle weakness, or unsteady movements. Vitamin deficiencies usually develop slowly over several months to years the symptoms may be subtle at first but increase as the deficiency worsens.
Doctors diagnose vitamin deficiency anemias through blood tests that check the number and appearance of red blood cells and the amount of folate, vitamin B-12, and vitamin C in the blood. If blood tests reveal a vitamin deficiency, further tests are done to determine the type and cause.
Vitamin deficiency anemia can be managed and avoided with vitamin supplements and in the diet.
* Choose a healthy diet, especially one that includes a variety of fruits and vegetables.
* Eat foods rich in folate which include dark green leafy vegetables, nuts, enriched grain products ( such as bread, cereal, pasta, and rice), fruits, and fruit juices.
* Have foods rich in vitamin B-12 including eggs, fortified food (such as breakfast cereals, milk, cheese, and yogurt), and red meat.
* Have foods rich in vitamins C which help in absorbing nutrients – broccoli, tomatoes, oranges, and strawberries.
* Avoid smoking as it interferes with the absorption of nutrients, such as vitamins C.
* Alcohol can contribute to vitamin deficiency anemia. If you drink alcohol, do so in moderation.
DO not take vitamin supplements without consulting a doctor. Overloading the body with vitamin supplements may damage the liver and heart. Not all anemias are caused by vitamin deficiency. Other causes include iron deficiency and certain blood diseases. Hence, it is necessary to diagnose and treat anemia properly.