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[author image=”” ]Saadia Khan A paediatric resident at the Children’s Hospital and Institute of Child Health, Multan, she has a keen interest in preventative paediatric medicine and community work, and tweets as@drkhanchc ([/author]

Anemia in kids.

According to nutritional National survey 2011, 61.9% of children were found to be anemic (severe deficiency 5.0% and moderate deficiency 56.9%). Regional differences in the prevalence of anemia ranged from 40.4% in Gilgit  ,Baltistan to 67.7% in Sindh.

Common types of anemia   are:

  • Iron-deficiency anemia
  • Folate-deficiency anemia.
  • Vitamin B12 deficiency

Symptoms of anemia are:

  • Pallor
  • Picca, if your child eats papers, pencils ,chalks,paints,mud.
  • Failure to thrive.
  • Developmental delay.
  • Easy fatigue ability, lack of interest in play.
  • Poor school performance.
  • Low IQ.
  • Tiredness, dizziness
  • Breathing difficulty and awareness about heart beat
  • Irritability and trouble concentrating.


  1. poor maternal health
  2. Lack of breast feeding and early initiation of complementary feeding.
  3. Junk foods and commercially available food intake.
  4.  Poor dietary habits
  5. Worm infestations and infections
  6. Hemoglobinopathies
  7. Chronic illnesses


If anemia is left untreated it can make your child more susceptible to illness and infection, affects his growth, development and IQ in early ages. Severe iron deficiency anemia may increase the risk of developing heart failure.

Preventive measures:

1-Give healthy diet to your kids.

Iron-rich foods are

  • Red meat, liver
  • Egg yolks
  • Dark, leafy greens (spinach, )
  • Dried fruit (dates ,raisins, nuts)
  • Iron-enriched cereals and grains (check the labels)
  • Fruits(apple)
  • chicken giblets
  • Beans, lentils, chick peas and soybeans.
  • 2- Stop giving too much milk to your growing kids, cow’s milk lacks iron and goat milk causes folate deficiency anemia.SO,breast fed your child up to 4-6 months and then start homemade complementary feeding in the form of yogurt,khichri with pulses and veggies as carrots, peas ,spinach, potatoes with meat in grind form. Apple and dates are also good source of iron for kids.

3- Tea and coffee calcium, found in dairy products such as milk and antacids hinders iron absorption so avoid with meals or iron supplements

4-Citrus, Vitamin C increases absorption of iron.

5-It is a common misconception that plant foods are not rich sources of iron. Lentils and spinach, for example—contain as much as one third of the daily requirement. Whole grains can also be good source of iron nutrition. The iron in plant foods is much more likely to be pulled out in the processing or cooking of foods. To minimize iron loss from cooking, shorter cooking times and the use of smaller amounts of water is recommended.

Don’t let your child to be a victim of anemia as its affects all his development and growth, seek urgent medical advice for your pale kids.

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