Every two seconds, someone in the United States needs blood. Even one donation can save multiple lives. But did you know that donating blood can be beneficial to your health, as well?
If you’ve wondered aloud if donating blood is good for you, below you’ll find a few surprising health benefits to consider.
Donating blood serves as a free health screening
Before giving blood, you must first tick a list of boxes that indicate you’re healthy and qualified. This involves checking your vital signs, including your blood pressure, body temperature, hemoglobin levels and pulse. This process could reveal a previously unknown medical condition you need to address, like high blood pressure or heart arrhythmia, also known as an irregular heartbeat.
Donating blood helps improve heart health and reduce iron levels
Donating blood removes some red blood cells, which carry iron throughout your body. This is good news for donors with high iron levels. Too much iron can lead to life-threatening conditions like liver disease, diabetes, and heart problems. People with a condition called hemochromatosis must have blood removed regularly to prevent iron buildup, so hemochromatosis can be prevented by regular blood donation.
It is important to keep in mind that low iron can cause anemia, and potentially disqualify a person from giving blood if their iron levels are too low.
Donating blood can be a community service
Coordinating a blood drive in your community is an excellent way to bring people together for a great cause. Is there a better cause than saving potentially dozens, if not hundreds, of lives, including those in your own community?
Donating blood can provide a “helper’s high"
Just knowing you can help a stranger can instill a sense of pride in the donor. Performing a selfless good deed for others can go a long way in improving your emotional well-being.
On top of being an act of kindness, donating blood is a form of volunteering, and research shows that volunteering offers a host of health benefits, including reducing stress, increasing positive, relaxed feelings by releasing dopamine, providing a sense of purpose.
More on the importance of blood donation:
- New FDA Guidelines Expand Blood Donor Eligibility
- 5 Myths About Blood Donation
- Blood Donation Checklist: Eligibility, Restrictions and More
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