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March 15, 2021 | Farah Jassawalla

How to Increase White Blood Cell Count

White blood cells, also called leukocytes, are cellular components found in the blood. They are created in the spongy tissue present inside bigger bones called bone marrow. Unlike red blood cell, they lack hemoglobin. However, they do have a nucleus. They are bigger than red blood cells, but fewer in number.                                                                                             

As an important part of the immune system, the primary function of white blood cells is to protect the body from infections and disease by fighting and destroying the various organisms that attack it.  They also contribute to the production of antibodies.

There are different types of white blood cells in the bloodstream. Some of these are monocytes, lymphocytes, basophils, and neutrophils. Each type is present in a certain quantity. However, sometimes the white blood cell count can decrease below the normal range. The medical term used to describe this condition is called leukopenia.

Quite a few reasons can result in leukopenia. Here are a few of them:

  • Alcohol abuse
  • Lupus
  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Congenital disorders
  • Poor nutrition
  • Viral infections
  • Lymphoma

Why should you be concerned if your white blood cell count is low? Because white blood cells fight foreign entities that enter your blood, a drop in your white blood cell levels lowers your body’s immunity and makes it vulnerable to infections. Listed below are some of the symptoms of a low white blood cell count:

  • Sweating
  • High fever
  • Chills
  • Body aches
  • Headaches

The following are some of the foods you can take to increase your white blood cell count back to a healthy level.

Vitamin-Rich Foods

Vitamin C, A, and B9 are all very important for increasing white blood cell count. Vitamin C helps towards improving your overall immunity. Vitamin A boosts the production of lymphocytes. Vitamin B9, on the other hand, boosts the production of neutrophils.

Foods such as fish, sweet potato, spinach, carrots, meat, and eggs are rich in these vitamins. After consulting a doctor, you can also take vitamin supplements.

Sunflower Seeds

Sunflower seeds are abundant in vitamin B6, vitamin E, and magnesium. All these nutrients are ones that boost white blood cells in attacking foreign organisms in the bloodstream. You can toss sunflower seeds on your salad to consume them. You could also grab some and munch on them.

Yogurt

Yogurt contains probiotics in a high amount. Probiotics contribute towards boosting immunity and also towards increasing white blood cell count. Take a bowl of yogurt daily. You could top it up with granola, chia seeds, and frozen berries.

Papaya Leaves

Acetogenins are a compound that also increases white blood cell count and can be found in papaya leaves. Once or twice daily, wash a bunch of papaya leaves and blend them in a little water. Next, strain the mixture and drink a tablespoon of the juice. Add some honey to the mixture to make it less bitter.

Noni Fruit

Noni fruit contains vitamin C. Consuming 30 to 60 ml of noni fruit juice will increase the count of lymphocytes in your blood. You could either use organic juice bought from the store or extract it yourself from the fruit.

Apart from using the remedies mentioned in this article, make sure to visit a cura healthcare provider if your white blood cell count is low.

Farah Jassawalla

Farah Jassawalla is a graduate of the Lahore School of Economics. She is also a writer, and a healthcare enthusiast, having closely observed case studies while working with Lahore's thriving general physicians at their clinics.