AS YOU CAN read about here, donating blood
not only helps save lives, it is great for your health, especially
if you are a man or a post-menopausal woman. Here is how to prepare
for giving blood:
1. Hydrate. Drink plenty of water the day
of your appointment. One pint of liquid will be removed from
your body, and your body will replace the liquid in your blood
stream within 24 hours. It will be easier for your body to do
this if you're hydrated. Ideally you would drink plenty of water
the day before you give blood too. If you really want
to do the ideal thing, you'd drink plenty of water three days
before giving blood.
2. Don't drink any alcohol the day before
(or the day) you give blood, because alcohol dehydrates you,
which is the opposite of hydration.
3. Don't take any aspirin the day before
(or the day) you donate blood. Aspirin thins your blood, which
means it prevents clotting. Which means it promotes bleeding.
Often donated blood is used to save the life of someone who is
bleeding, and the last thing they need is an infusion of blood
that promotes bleeding.
4. If you have a cold, change your appointment
to a later date. This is for your sake. It isn't likely to be
transmitted to the receiver, but giving blood when you have a
cold may make it more difficult for your body to fight the cold.
5. Eat two hours before your appointment.
You want to have plenty of food in your system, but ideally it
would be mostly digested at the time you gave blood, so those
nutrients are available in your blood and in your body afterwards
also. So eat sometime before you go in. And hour before is fine.
Three hours before is fine too. Two hours before is perfect.
Eat a healthy meal.
more about the health benefits of giving blood.
A few facts about giving blood:
1. Nothing can replace blood. It cannot
be manufactured. It can only come from blood donors.
2. Every two seconds someone in the U.S.
3. More than 38,000 blood donations are
needed each day.
4. Less than 38 percent of the U.S. population
is eligible to give blood.
5. The average adult has ten pints of blood
in her or his body. One pint is given during a donation.
6. 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.
7. The number one reason donors say they
give blood is because they "want to help others."