Low red blood count advise

Hi I'm asking for advice for my daughter she has lupus and has not been feeling well her gp arranged some blood test mainly to rule ou thyroid problems and hormone problems as she had a etopic pregancy in feb her bloods have come back and doctor called her to say her rbc was very low I don't know how low as she didn't ask she was told to increase green veg and red meat and to have a retest in 3 months I was surprised because her gp did not recommend iron tablets and as she dosent eat red meat I suggested she take iron supplements but I'm now beginning to doubt my advise can taking iron supplements mask b12 deficancy or any other problems she has a very good GP whom she trusts I'm just confused as to why iron tablets were not suggested I'm not sure what rbc means is this the

same as anemia if low I have also posted on lupus forum to see if they have any ideas

5 Replies

  • Hi Rush, I only had slightly low RBC, but I started eating hemp, chia, and sesame seeds for breakfast. Just put a tablespoon or two of each in a bowl and add a cut up banana. Now my RBC is in normal ranges. These seeds are high in iron. That doesn't really answer your questions about anemia, RBC which I'm not an expert on. That was just my experience to raise my RBC. All the best, Calafia

  • Thank you Calafia I will get her some hemp and sesame seeds I would rather try the food route rather than supplements as they are more likely

    To show if she is having problems with absorption

    Or another problem that supplements may mask

    Did you just use sesame seeds from supermarket.

    And how much did you have a day

  • Supplements can mask a problem but if she can get the b12, iron or whatever else she may be lacking through her food, thats surely the preferable route. I don't think there will be a resolution to any auto immune illness purely with medication alone.

    I don't think that is what you are suggesting. But especially as she is aveggie she needs to perhaps take even more care thst vits that meat eaters may gave more readily available, are also available to her.

  • Hi Rush,

    I'm in the states, so we have stores like The Vitamin Shoppe or Whole Foods that have these seeds in raw form sometimes in the bulk bin, but usually I buy them pre-packaged as not much price difference and easier to find at the stores nearest to me.

    I'm just doing approx a couple of tablespoons of each (sesame, chia, and hemp) in a bowl and adding a cut up banana for some natural sweetness and flavor. She could probably eat more throughout the day, but please check the package about recommended servings. The great thing is if she's having something like yogurt, you can just mix them in there instead. However, I have to note that I avoid dairy because it increases my inflammation and then I don't feel well. If you think that might be the case, she could do a simple food diet and then slowly add back foods to see how she feels.

    Good thoughts for her to feel better!


  • There are many different causes or low red blood counts, including iron and B12 deficiency. People with lupus can also have low red blood counts because they have antibodies to their own red blood cells and they are destroyed by their own immune system. It is called autoimmune hemolytic anemia. Your doctor will have to do further tests if increasing iron in her diet does not help to increase her red blood counts.

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