Thu, 01 Oct 2020

PHO: Drinking beer after bloodletting is discouraged

Philippine Information Agency
12 Nov 2019, 18:38 GMT+10

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol, Nov. 9 (PIA) -- A health officer from the Provincial Health Office (PHO) here has clarified that drinking beer after donating blood may not be a good practice.

Nurse Milagros Israel, blood services coordinator at PHO, said giving beer to blood donors after blood donation could be bad for the donor.

Beer, like any alcohol, is more of a diuretic and it acts on the kidneys making one urinate more than your usual, according to Professor Oliver James, Head of Clinical Medical Sciences at Newcastle University.

His study also noted that for every gram of alcohol consumed, urine excretion increases by 10ml.

Moreover, beer messes with the body and reduces the production of vasopressin hormones.

These tell your kidneys to reabsorb water rather than flush it out through the bladder.

With the body's natural signal switched off, the bladder is free to fill up with fluid.

According to, around half of the blood one donates is made of water.

This means donors should be fully hydrated before donating blood.

And when the body loses fluids during the blood donation process, the blood pressure can drop, leading to dizziness.

With this, drinking beer which could facilitate the release of more fluids, a donor who will drink beer may be at a position where it could take a longer time for him to recover the lost blood fluids.

Furthermore, health authorities say the recommended period between blood donations is three to four months.

This just means that one can line up for blood donation three or four months after the last bleeding, Israel shared during the Kapihan sa PIA this week.

And while different blood components take different lengths of time to replenish, the fresh whole blood volume is usually restored within ten minutes.

Upon blood donation, blood collection facilities would get a fresh whole blood (FWB), which can be broken down into its components, as needed by a patient.

For anemic patients, a blood component called packed red blood cells (PRBC) is needed, and this component can be separated from an FWB by centrifugation and the removal of most of the plasma, another blood component.

Plasma is another blood component often referred to as fresh frozen plasma (FFP) which is beneficial to a wide variety of patients including cancer and leukemia patients, those undergoing liver transplants, bone marrow transplants, and severe burn patients, while hemophilia patients need donated plasma for clotting.

Platelets are tiny cells in the blood that form clots and stop bleeding.

These are essential to surviving and fighting cancer, chronic diseases, and traumatic injuries.

These do not last long, though, and must be used within five days.

Plasma taken from the body can be recovered within 24 hours, platelets within 72 hours, and red blood cells in two to four weeks. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)

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