Heart is the most vital organ that pumps the blood through arteries and veins and reach to different parts of the body. When this is affected the body will show some discomfort in the form of various diseases.
Anaemia can be defined as a condition in which the RBCs (Red Blood Cells) reduces or their oxygen carrying capacity declines to meet the body’s physiological requirements. These factors are variable on the basis of age, sex, habits (smoking and alcohol consumption) and pregnancy.
In a global scenario, Iron deficiency is the most prominent cause of anaemia. Other reasons are lack of folate, vitamins – B12 & A deficiencies, in conditions of chronic inflammation, parasitic infections, and any other gene inherited disorders.
Certain bleeding disorders, such as profuse menstrual bleeding, bleeding haemorrhoids, or bleeding gums, can lead to anaemia because of blood loss. Whenever modern medicine deals with the problem of anaemia, it considers all these aetiological factors.
What causes anaemia?
Anaemia occurs in the body if, body fails to make the red blood cells or produce less than required. It may occur when the body destroys the RBC or also when the body loses too many RBCs. Haemoglobin, a protein is present in the blood constitutes the RBC. It helps the red blood cells to carry the oxygen throughout the body.
When the body doesn’t have enough RBC or enough amount of haemoglobin, it lacks the oxygen needs. As a result, body feels fatigue or drowsy all the time. On the other hand, in few cases like person with aplastic anaemia, the body will not produce enough white blood cells (WBCs and platelets). These white blood cells are required by the body to fight against diseases or infections.
Various diseases or other conditions can also cause anaemia. For example, in case of pregnancy, if the body is not able to meet the requirement of RBCs, it may lead to anaemia. In certain conditions of auto immune disorders, anaemia is one of the common symptom.
Anaemia can be acquired or inherited. In inherited cases, the anaemia has been passed from the parental genes to children. Acquired means, the conditions is developed in the body after birth. Sometimes the cause is unknown.
Types of Anaemia:
Modern medicine has delineated several types of anaemia – Iron deficiency anaemia, pernicious anaemia, sickle cell anaemia and hypoproteinemic anaemia (lack of protein in the body), as well as certain vitamin deficiency anaemias, such as B-12 and folic acid deficiency anaemia.
Iron Deficiency Anemia
This is the most common form of anemia. Due to less production of hemoglobin, it results in iron deficiency anaemia. Due to severe blood loos, poor diet, etc. body doesn’t absorb the Iron required for the body from the food we eat. As a result, this happens.
Like iron, vitamin B12 is a main factor for enough hemoglobin production. Vegan mostly lack Vitamin B12, because their diet might not have enough amount of Vit B12. This also has a direct impact of heam production in the body. This type of anaemia is also called as vitamin B12 deficiency anaemia.
Sickle Cell Anemia
When the RBCs acquire sickle-shaped shape, it results in sickle cell anaemia. There will abnormal heamoglobin known as sickle cell heamoglobin present in this condition, which is the cause for the abnormal shape. Sickle cells are sticky and they block the normal blood flow.
When the body cannot produce enough RBCs, it leads to aplastic anaemia. RBC is produced at the bone marrow and when the it fails to produce these red cells, the blood counts decreases and leads to aplastic anaemia.
Heamolytic anaemia occurs when the red blood cells get destroyed before their normal lifespan. In this condition, bone marrow struggles to produce new blood cells, and fail to meet the body’s requirement.
Blood Loss Anemia
When there is an excess blood loose due to any reason like injury, accident or excess menstrual flow, blood loss anaemia occurs.
Symptoms of Anaemia
- Pale skin
- Shortness of breath
- Cold hands and feet
- Chest pain
- Hair loss
- Irregular heartbeat
- Low stamina
- Difficulty in concentrating
Ayurveda looks at anaemia quite differently. Ayurvedic classification of anaemia falls under three basic doshic conditions: vata, pitta and kapha types.
In Vataja type of anaemia, the person looks thin, with dry, rough, scaly skin and has cracking of the joints. He or she looks emaciated and pale, may suffer from breathlessness and constipation, and may pass tarry stools.
In Pitta type of anaemia, the eyes are slightly yellowish, the person may get high-coloured urine, and the stools are dark brown or have a slightly yellowish tinge. There may be nausea, or pain in the liver and/or spleen area. Dizziness or vertigo may be experienced, and the person may become easily irritated by light.
In Kaphaja type anaemia, there is often swelling (edema), and the person’s skin feels cold and clammy and looks shiny. Because of the edema, the skin gets stretched so much.
By careful observation one can understand whether the anaemia is vata, pitta or kapha. By treating the dosha, one treats the root cause and can alleviate the anaemia.