Donating plasma is quite an important, voluntary action that can save lives. The plasma one donates is used in hospital trauma situations to help those in need. Plasma also helps to stop bleeding during emergencies. When donating plasma, knowing about the donation requirements is important.
Understanding whether it would be safe to donate plasma
Donating plasma is quite similar to donating blood. As long as one donates the plasma in a certified center, donating plasma is quite safe. If an individual is planning to donate plasma, the first thing that they should do is to look for a center that is certified by the International Quality Plasma Program (IQPP). These centers are sterile and have highly-trained professionals. All the equipment used in the plasma collection process is sterilized and cleaned after use. If one comes into contact with any equipment, it is important to keep it clean to ensure no transmission of harmful pathogens.
Does plasma donation hurt?
Donating plasma does not hurt. The feeling of donating blood and donating plasma is similar. One might feel a stinging sensation when the needle is inserted. Otherwise, the hospital staff will do their best to ensure one is comfortable throughout the donation process.
Things that one should eat and drink during plasma donation
If one is donating blood, staying hydrated before and after plasma donation is important. This is because about 50% of the blood is made of water. Moreover, one should also increase their iron intake because one loses iron when donating plasma. If the iron level is decreased, it might cause symptoms of fatigue.
Heme iron is an iron that can be absorbed more easily. Therefore, it boosts iron levels much more effectively. The body absorbs as much as 30% of the heme iron and only about 2 to 10 percent of nonheme iron. Anybody can’t donate plasma. One should know about the donation requirements before donating plasma.
Before one donates blood, one should also consider increasing the intake of iron-rich foods. This will help them increase the body’s iron stores and reduce the risks associated with iron deficiency, like anemia.
List of foods that are rich in heme iron:
- Meats: lamb, ham, pork, veal, beef, and dried beef.
- Poultry: chicken and turkey.
- Fish and shellfish: Tuna, shrimp, clams, haddock, and mackerel.
- Organs: Liver
Foods rich in nonheme iron include:
- Vegetables: Spinach, peas, broccoli, sweet potatoes, string beans, beet greens, dandelion greens, collards, kale, and chard.
- Bread and cereals: enriched white bread, enriched cereal, enriched pasta, wheat, cornmeal, oats, whole-wheat bread, rye bread, bran cereals, and enriched rice.
- Fruits: Strawberries, dates, figs, prunes, prune juice, dried apricots, and dried peaches. Watermelon, raisons.
- Beans: Tofu, kidney, garbanzo, white, dried peas, beans, and lentils.
- Vitamin C: Although heme iron will raise one’s iron levels more effectively, vitamin C can also help the body absorb plant-based or nonheme iron much better. Some of the fruits that are high in this vitamin include:
- citrus fruits and juices
- kiwi fruit
Donating plasma can be done quickly and easily. If one eats healthy on the day of the plasma donation and drinks plenty of extra fluids, one should have minimal or no side effects. If one knows about the donation requirements beforehand, it will be beneficial.