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What foods or drinks are good to raise hemoglobin?

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Foods high in iron
  • Liver and other meats
  • Seafood
  • Dried fruits like apricots, prunes and raisins
  • Nuts
  • Beans, especially lima beans
  • Green leafy vegetables, such as spinach and broccoli
  • Blackstrap molasses
  • Whole grains
  • Iron-fortified breads and cereals (check the label)

Iron supplements may also help. Because some people become nauseated if they take an iron supplement on an empty stomach, it can help to take it with food. Vitamin C boosts iron absorption, so drink a glass of orange or grapefruit juice when you take your iron. You can increase the chances that the iron you get from food will be absorbed by your body in other ways, too. For example, avoid drinking tea with food because a substance in tea called tannin reduces the body's ability to absorb iron found in the food or iron supplement. Milk can also interfere with iron absorption, so don't pair milk with iron-rich foods if you are concerned about getting enough iron.
This information will be helpful if you are suffering from anemia because you are low iron. There could be other reasons why your hemoglobin levels are low so if possible find a health care provider who can find out why your hemoglobin is low.
Please keep in mind that if your hemoglobin levels are low due to a chemotherapy drug, primarily Vinblastine (given for prostate cancer), that grapefruit juice is considered to interfere with the absorption of the drug by the body. This has not been proven with other chemotherapy drugs, but better safe than sorry. Orange juice is the safer choice.
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