Changing Your Diet to Improve Sickle Cell


How does changing your diet help sickle cell?

If you are suffering from crisis after crisis, your diet may be a cause for concern. If you have read any recent books by Barbara Kingsolver or Michael Pollan; watched Food Matters or Food Inc;  you would know the new theories that without sounding trite you are what you eat.

Think about what you eat on a daily basis. Is your diet a processed food diet with words you canʼt pronounce on the back of a box or package? What you eat matters.

A few decades ago, I had the worst crisis of my life. I was in and out of the hospital so much I thought I paid for the new wing on the hospital with my insurance. I was 25 years old at that time. My hemoglobin and hematocrit was so low and I was told I would not survive. I prepared myself to talk to my two small children, and at that time, I decided that I would do everything and anything to survive.  I had a good friend who was a nurse and gave me some information about holistic care. I thought to myself what do I have to lose?

I read those books, studied them, went to the library, bought more books and changed my life. I threw away all the meat in my freezer that day. I became a vegetarian. My young daughter had a meltdown that we still joke about to this day. She missed the familiar foods, but as her parent I wanted her to be healthier.

I am not asking you to become a vegetarian. I am asking you to eat better. Did you know you could pour a can of soda on a car battery to eat through corrosion? Google “can of soda and car battery” if you donʼt believe me. My point is why would you want to drink high fructose corn syrup and chemicals that could remove corrosion from a car battery? What is that doing to your body? Why would you want to eat highly processed foods?

As a wellness coach, I talk to people almost daily about their diet. The first excuse I hear from clients is, “I canʼt afford to eat well.” This is a fallacy…the truth of the matter is you canʼt afford to eat badly, because you pay for it later with heart disease and hypertension. Eat what fruits and vegetables are in season, since they will be cheaper than other ‘exotic’ fruits. As a sickle cell patient you need to eat well to be healthier.

Editor’s note: Thank you April, for sharing your healthy insights with us. Readers, stay tuned for the conclusion of this article that will be featured tomorrow!


  1. Hey April, please contact me. I am a nurse living with Sickle Cell Anemia and would like to do the same as you. Educate others with this illness and help them to li e better with it starting off with healthy lifestyle and nutrition too.


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