World Blood Donor Day: 5 benefits of donating blood you must know about
Every year, World Blood Donor Day is observed on June 14 to raise awareness about the need to donate blood regularly to increase the availability of safe blood and its products for patients in need. This day is also an occasion to thank donors who volunteer to donate the life-saving gift of blood. This also acts as an encouragement for others who are otherwise hesitant to volunteer in the noble cause.
“According to the World Health Organisation, blood transfusion can potentially save several lives, but many times patients needing transfusion do not have access to safe blood readily. Many times, patients suffering from life-threatening conditions can be saved by blood donation. But, it must also be known that blood donation not only helps save lives, but it also has certain health benefits for the donor as well,” said Dr Sandeep Jassal, doctor of alternative medicine, who consults on Practo.
To know more, read about the benefits, as shared by Dr Jassal.
Weight loss: Timely blood donation helps in the reduction of weight and improves fitness in healthy adults. According to the University of California researchers, donating a pint of blood i.e., 450 ml helps your body burn about 650 calories. But it must not be thought of or encouraged as a weight loss plan. Doctor consultation before donating blood is a must, to avoid any health issues.
Prevents hemochromatosis: Donating blood can lower the risk or may prevent the development of hemochromatosis, a condition in which there is an excess absorption of iron by the body. Regular blood donation may lower iron overload, hence proving it beneficial for people with hemochromatosis. However, it is imperative to ensure that the mandatory standards of blood donation eligibility criteria are met by the donor with hemochromatosis.
Reduce heart disease risk: Regular blood donation keeps in check the iron levels, which lowers the risk of heart disease. A large amount of iron build-up in the body can cause oxidative damage which has proven to be a major culprit in accelerating aging, heart attacks, strokes, etc.
Lower cancer risk: Higher levels of iron in the body are an invitation to cancer. By donating blood, you can maintain healthy iron levels, thereby lowering your risk of developing cancer.
Enhance new blood cell production: Blood donation stimulates the production of new blood cells. After donating blood, your body’s system gets to work within 48 hours of donation with the help of bone marrow. New blood cells are produced and all the lost red blood cells are replaced within a span of 30 to 60 days. Hence, donating blood helps in maintaining vital health.