Is giving blood good for you?

When me and my wife lived in Cheyenne, WY on my way home I would give blood every 8 weeks becuase the blood service building was on my way home and I wanted to help out.  After moving back to Utah I fell out of the habit of going to give blood.  I would try went ever our church would have a blood drive but often it just wasn’t easy for me to make it so as it happened I wouldn’t make it out to give.

Than after about 8 years of missing giving blood I decided that enough was enough!!  So a few months back I looked up the closest place that I could donate blood and found ARUP Blood services.  I have been doing this for the last 24 weeks.  I feel great that I am able to help people but then I wondered, is there other benefit to giving blood?  Here is some of the things that I found.

  1. Men who donate blood are four times less likely to have a heart attack than men who do not donate blood.
  2. Donating blood gives you a “helper’s high,” and that’s good for your health. Studies show when a person helps another, the helper not only feels good, it is physically good for the helper’s body.
  3.  It lowers the iron buildup in your blood. Men and postmenopausal women tend to accumulate iron in their blood, and several studies have shown this buildup may increase the risk of heart disease. Giving blood removes iron from your body.
  4. You instantly lose one pound. When you donate blood, you give one pint (16 ounces). Liquid measurements aren’t the same as weight measurements, but in this case, it’s close enough. I’m sure it takes more than a pound of your body’s resources to make a pint of blood.
  5. You get a free blood test, worth about $300. Before giving your blood to someone, blood banks obviously must test the blood for infectious diseases. If something is found, they will let you know (and the blood will not be used).
  6. Your body makes newer, more flexible blood cells to replace the ones you donated. More flexible blood cells fit through your small capillaries better, improving blood flow through your body.

So if you have about an hour to give then I challenge you to really give this holiday season and give a part of yourself!!

Other Blood Donation Stats:

  • Nothing can replace blood. It cannot be manufactured. It can only come from blood donors.
  • Every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood.
  • More than 38,000 blood donations are needed each day.
  • Less than 38 percent of the U.S. population is eligible to give blood.
  • The average adult has ten pints of blood in her or his body. One pint is given during a donation.
  • There are four kinds of “transfusable products” that can be derived from blood: red cells, plasma, platelets, and cryoprecipitate. Usually, two or three of these are produced from a pint of donated whole blood, so each donation can help save up to three lives.