Rising Anemia in Kashmir, Cover story 17 July,2023 .

Rising Anemia in Kashmir 

News Kashmir Exclusive 

Anemia is a worrying disease. Anemia is a problem of not having enough healthy red blood cells or hemoglobin to carry oxygen to the body’s tissues. Hemoglobin is a protein found in red cells that carries oxygen from the lungs to all other organs in the body. Having anemia can cause tiredness, weakness and shortness of breath.

As a matter of fact, there are many forms of anemia. Each has its own cause. Anemia can be short term or long term. It can range from mild to severe. Anemia can be a warning sign of serious illness.

On the otherhand,

Treatments for anemia might involve taking supplements or having medical procedures. Eating a healthy diet might prevent some forms of anemia.

According to the report released recently, 66 percent women in Jammu and Kashmir have anaemia, including 25 percent with mild anaemia, 38 percent with moderate anaemia, and 3 percent with severe anaemia.

“Anaemia is particularly high among rural women, women aged 15-19, and other backward class women, but anaemia exceeds 40 percent for every group of women.”

per the report, during NFHS-4, 49 percent non-pregnant women aged between 15-49 were anaemic, which has increased to 67.3 percent during NFHS-5.

However, slight improvement has been in anaemic condition of pregnant women aged 15-49 as during NFHS-4 46.9 percent women were found anaemic while during NFHS-5 44.1 percent women were found anaemic.

The prevalence of anaemia among children aged between six months to five years has increased to 73 per cent in Jammu and Kashmir in the last few years, Union Health Ministry in its report said.

As per the figures compiled by Union Health Ministry, the prevalence of anaemia among children aged six months to five years is highest in Ladakh (90 per cent), followed by Gujarat (80 per cent), Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu (76 per cent), Madhya Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir (73 per cent), and Punjab and Rajasthan ( 71 percent).

Dr. Ratan Lal Kaul world renowned in Opthamology and neurology fields ,while talking to News Kashmir stated :” Anaemia is very much present in large proportions in Jammu and Kashmir. Children and women are most hit by Anaemia.  The reasons are multifold . First and foremost our eating habits are not good. The vegetarian and non vegetarian diet we get is compromised.  The food here is of most substandard quality. Poverty is also compounding the problems like Anaemia. Protein deficiency and Vitamin D deficiency is also adding to the diseases like Anaemia.”

One hopes we will take corrective measures to address anemia in Kashmir.