Only 1/30 people donate. These guys often donate regularly and are the reason we don't have to import huge amounts of blood. People don't give because they're afraid of the procedure, because they don't think it's needed, or because they don't care.
Well - all of these are true. And I hope these ideas will make you see that you can't afford NOT to give blood.
Here's a video I made outlining the benefits of giving blood - and why you can't afford NOT to do it!
A lot of this is due to cultural beliefs that blood is related to male virility, but a much larger part of this is due to laziness or being afraid of the actual procedure. Well, hopefully, the next point will change your mind about that.
Even then, joining the registry only involves the taking of an extra 20mL of blood, which they use to figure out your "tissue type," which is used to match the recipient to a donor.
And there's only a 1/400 chance of being a match for someone in your lifetime.
But early detection isn't the only benefit. Giving blood regularly has been shown to reduce the risk of heart attacks in men, as well as the ability to slow insulin resistance which leads to diabetes. A study of nearly 3000 men in Finland showed those who did give blood regularly had an 88% lower risk of heart attack than those who didn't! That's HUGE! Donating blood has been known to reduce the buildup of toxic elements in your blood, including iron, making it not only a free detox, but a good way to reduce your risk of cancer!
Try and include high iron foods and things like orange juice (which increases iron absorption) to ensure your iron and haemoglobin levels are sufficient. A tip from the nurses there - spinach and orange juice in the meal before you donate increases iron levels into the healthy range for those who find themselves turned back for being too low.
Make sure you haven't travelled to areas with infectious diseases in the past 3 months and make sure that you can prove any recent tattoos you've had were done in sterile situations.
You can also volunteer at the Red Cross like I do, either by helping out and giving snacks to the donors, or by driving a car or van that picks up donors. It looks great on your CV and you're just as vital a cog in the great machine as the donors themselves. Click here for more info.
Participating or donating to people in the World's Greatest Shave or events like the Leukaemia Foundation's "Light the Night Walks" also helps in a similar way.
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