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 White Blood Cell Count (WBC), Low, High

  Last Updated : Feb 12,2019






White Blood Cell Count (WBC), Low, High

all about white blood cells.  why white blood cells count is high? why white blood cell count is low? foods that helps white blood cell count. White Blood Cells (WBC) are the immune cells of our body which are a part of blood. They are also known as ‘leukocytes’. Although they make up only 1% of the components of the blood, they have a very crucial role to play in our body. They are continuously at war with any bacteria or virus that enters our body, thus forming the first line of defense against any foreign invader that’s a threat to your health.

These WBC are made in the bone marrow and stored in the blood and lymphatic systems till they are needed  to fight any type of infection. Their ratio against red blood cell (RBC) is 1 : 600. Because WBC has a short life span so your body has to continuously produce them. A healthy diet is a key to making these WBC and staying fit and robust. 

There are different kinds of WBC which range from those which recognize the foreign bodies to the ones which reach to the site and destroy and ingest them. The different types of WBC are : 

Neutrophils : More than half of the white blood cells are Neutrophils. They are those powerful WBC which signal the other types of WBC of the invaders and go ahead and digest and kill the bacteria and virus. 

Eosinophils : They are primarily accountable for destroying parasites, cancer cells and also are a part of allergic responses especially to pollen. 

Basophils : These form only 1% of the WBC. They play a role in alerting the body to infections by secreting chemicals like ‘histamines’ and controlling body’s responses to allergies, especially that of asthma. 

Lymphocytes : These are very important type of WBC which are responsible for making antibodies that help the body defend against different types of harmful bacteria, virus and other threats. 

Monocytes : They form 5% of the WBC in your blood. their most important function is to break down the bacteria as well as ingest and clean up the dead cells and thus are often termed as ‘vaccum cleaner’. They usually have a longer life span than other types of WBC. 

What is the Normal WBC count?

Checking the number of white blood cells us usually a part of CBC (Complete Blood Cell) test. A normal white blood cell count for a healthy adult is usually between 4,000 and 10,000 cells/MCL.

When is WBC Count High?

An increase in white blood cells is known as leukocytosis. A higher WBC count than normal usually indicates an infection signaling that your body has been attacked by bacteria or virus. As a counter effect, the body multiplies the number of WBC so as to fight and destroy the invaders.

Few factors which contribute to a high WBC count are

• Infection

• Smoking

• Infections like tuberculosis

• Stress

Pregnancy

• Allergies

• Tissue damage (eg. Burns)

• Tumors in the bone marrow

• Drugs such as corticosteroids

When is WBC Count Low?

When the number of white blood cells is too low it is termed as leukopenia. This condition indicates may indicate severe infections. A low WBC count is a signal that your body’s immune cells are being destroyed by the threats more faster than they are being made or the body is producing few of them. In simple words, it means that the bacteria or virus have increased or multiplied to a number which is now destroying your immune cells and your immune system has weakened.

Most common factor which contribute to low WBC count are:

• Severe Infection

•  Bone Marrow Damage

• Auto Immune Disorders

• Excessive exercise

HIV / AIDS

Cancer & Radiation Therapy

• Liver and spleen diseases

• Some specific medicines like cancer treating drugs or antibiotics

Diagnosis of High / Low WBC count

Your doctor who preferable knows your medical history is the best person to diagnose high / low WBC levels. S(he) will recommend a treatment plan to you after determining the cause. It is very likely that you may need to repeat the blood test periodically to run a close check at the WBC levels. 

If your WBC count remains high / low, this indicates that your condition has worsened. Your doctor might change the treatment or the medication till your WBC count returns to normal or may suggest you to visit a specialist. A low WBC count in very severe diseased conditions is slightly difficult to bring back to normal. 

Can Diet Help in Improving WBC Count?

Well, to a certain extent yes. Healthy eating is always a ladder to a healthy YOU. First basic rule is to avoid all the junk, refined and canned products from your food list. Yes, you are right…. This list is quite immense. It includes bread, pasta, burger, chips, canned juices, sugary foods, cakes, mithais and so on…. 

So the next question is what to eat then? Turn to the colourful Nature’s basket of fruits, veggies, unrefined cereals and sprouts. These are rich in :

Protein

Vitamin C

Vitamin E

Vitamin A

Vitamin B12

Folate

Zinc, and

• Other antioxidants

All these nutrients together work to build the health and the number of WBC in the blood, thus strengthening your immune system. 

WBC Count and Exercise

If you check your WBC count immediately after exercise, your count might be actually high. But there is nothing to worry about it. In a way, this strengthens your immune system and allows your body to identify disease causing organisms more easily than normal circumstances. However after exercise, the count drops back to normal. But excessive athletic training (marathon, ultra athletes, triathletes) can result in a significant decrease in WBC count. However this isn’t really a cause of worry. Discuss it with your doctor and trainer and chalk out a balance between antioxidant you pop up and your exercise regime.

Recipe Suggestions to Boost WBC Count

1. Sprouts and Palak Idli

2. Coconut Chia Seeds Pudding with Mixed Fruits and Walnuts

3. Flax Seed Shakarpara

4. Flaxseeds Dry Chutney

5. Tomato Salsa

6. Oats Methi Multiflour Khakhra

7. Orange Tabbouleh

8. Jowar Palak Appe

9. Chana Dal Pancakes

10. Pineapple Cucumber Salad

11. Broccoli Soup

12. Orange, Grapefruit and Mint Salad

13. Carrot and Red Pepper Juice

14. Bajra, Whole Moong and Green Pea Khichdi

15. Anti- Cancer and Anti- Inflammation Spinach Juice

16. Nachni Paneer Pancake

17. Jowar Methi Roti

white blood cell count low high

1.  
 by Tarla Dalal
But for the fact that it is steamed in an idli mould, the Sprouts and Palak Idli has nothing else in common with the traditional rice and urad idli, because it has an excitingly different taste and mouth-feel. Very soft and spongy, the Sprouts and Palak Idli is addictively delicious. The batter of moong sprouts and spinach gains its appetising aroma and taste from ingredients like sesame and green chillies. This batter does not have to be fermented. By adding a dash of fruit salt, we ensure that the idlis come out very soft and fluffy even though the batter is not fermented. The best part is that this tasty snack is also very healthy, loaded with protein but low in calories. Enjoy it with chutney and sambhar for breakfast or supper, or cut it into bite-sized pieces and serve as a starter or evening snack with green chutney!
 
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The current trend totally overrides the old fashioned notion that endurance and health comes from boring dishes and tonics! There are awesome, irresistibly tasty ways in which you can boost your endurance, and this Coconut Chia Seeds Pudding with Mixed Fruits and Walnuts is one example. With the soothing flavour or coconut milk, the pleasant sweetness of honey, the unique texture of chia seeds and the juicy crunch of fruits and nuts, this pudding is truly an exciting treat. You can vary this recipe by topping it with any seasonal fruits, and by using green apple instead of regular apples. Stored in the refrigerator in a covered container, this pudding stays good for two days. It is perfect for endurance athletes as chia seeds are high in fat and low in carbs. This pudding is also a good source of alpha linoleic acid, which is an antioxidant essential for energy production in the body. It helps runners to maintain high energy levels.
We have heard repeatedly that flaxseeds are a great source of Omega-3 fatty acids, and are an essential food especially for vegetarians. But, many of us are at a loss of interesting ways to include it in our diet. While we do attempt to include it in mukhwas , raita , etc., here we present a very innovative way to consume this fibre, calcium and Omega-3 fatty acid rich seed in the form of crunchy shakarparas, which can be enjoyed as an evening snack .
Dry chutney powder, usually made with dals and red chillies, just got healthier in this all-new avtar. The traditional South Indian recipe has been tweaked to incorporate flax seeds instead of dals. Some cumin seeds have also been added to the formula to make it tastier! With loads of fibre and nutrients, this healthy version of malgapodi is a wise addition to your diet. You can mix the Flaxseeds Dry Chutney with til oil and serve as an accompaniment for idlis and dosas , or you can sprinkle some of it over snacks like uttapa to give a tongue-tickling flavour.
5.  
 by Tarla Dalal
Hmmm, life without Tomato Salsa can be boring. From being used as a topping for burritos and open sandwiches, to being served with crackers and chips, the Tomato Salsa is indeed an exciting spot in our culinary world! Here is a delicious Tomato Salsa recipe, which is absolutely suitable for diabetics . It is rich in vitamin A and lycopene and has no oil or fat. Loads of veggies give it an awesome taste, exciting mouth-feel, and of course, a good dose of fibre too. Use this fabulous salsa to make Burritos or serve it with Baked Tortilla Chips .
6.  
 by Tarla Dalal
Khakhras are a handy jar snack. They give wonderful company to a cup of hot tea , silence your tummy whenever a sudden hunger pang strikes, and can be carried around in your handbag to snack on, anytime you are peckish. These crisp and tasty Oats and Methi Multiflour Khakhras are full of iron-rich ingredients like fenugreek, jowar and nachni, which not only contribute iron to the recipe, but also improve the flavour and texture of the khakhra remarkably. Oats brings to the table loads of fibre, which helps to keep your digestive tract healthy. So, whenever you find time, make a batch of these scrumptious khakhras and stock them in an airtight container. Click here for more nutritious recipes for pregnancy .
Bulgur (which is often referred to as broken wheat or dalia) is the healthiest form of wheat available. The most important nutrient retained by this cereal form is fibre, that makes it a low glycemic index food and helps to prevent a quick rise in blood sugar levels. In contrast, wheat products like rava, maida and pasta lose many of their nutrients as a result of processing and refining. You can also make other nourishing dishes like khichdi and pulao using bulgur wheat. Packed with protein, calcium, vitamin C, vitamin A, iron and fibre, this salad is spiked up with a lot of mediterranean flavours like olive oil, oranges and parsley. Lemon juice and spring onions which will not fail to perk up your spirits. Allow the salad to rest a while after you toss it so that all the flavours mellow and blend yielding into a harmonious flavour.
8.  
 by Tarla Dalal
Irresistibly tempting, the Jowar Palak Appe is a real treat to the palate, while also being a nourishing snack for your body. Rich in iron , fibre and other nutrients, this appe is quite easy to make and super tasty with the spiky flavour of ginger and green chillies. It doesn't require any soaking, grinding or fermentation. You'll also like the fact that this appe requires very little oil to cook. Instead of spinach, you can add other veggies too. Plus, the batter can also be used to make yummy dosas. Serve the appe hot and fresh with chutney. Suggested Serving Size is 4 to 5 appes.
9.  
 by Tarla Dalal
It has been recently discovered that chana dal is a very beneficial pulse for diabetics as it helps in the utilization of sugar effectively causing a slow rise in blood sugar levels because of its low glycemic index. This recipe makes use of soaked chana dal mixed with vitamin rich vegetables and protein rich curds to enhance its taste. Grated ginger and green chillies add the much-needed spice to the pancakes. Cook these pancakes over a slow flame as the chana dal is coarsely ground and will take a while to cook well.
Pineapple and cucumbers tossed with coriander and lemon juice furnish a storehouse of fibre. Honey imparts a delicate sweetness to this tangy salad. Rather than serving it as an occasional treat, make this sweet and sour salad a part of your daily meal and say goodbye to constipation!
11.  
 by Tarla Dalal
The Broccoli Broth is a really quick soup to make, and one which does not require you to hunt for umpteen ingredients. Despite the minimal amount of ingredients, it has a fantastic flavour mainly due to the teamwork of broccoli with onions, and a soothing texture due to the addition of milk. Broccoli is one of the best sources of antixodants like vitamin A and folic acid, which makes it a wonder food during Pregnancy . You will need plenty of folic acid not only during your first trimester, but also before you conceive, so you can recommend this recipe to your friends who are planning for a child. Thanks to the addition of milk, this recipe is also rich in calcium and protein.
12.  
 by Tarla Dalal
Grapefruit is a wonderful ingredient, with its unique, inimitable taste and beautiful pinkish hue. The flavour of grapefruit is very rare as it combines tanginess, tartness and a mild sweetness, which is sure to tickle your taste buds! In this amazing salad, grapefruit comes together with orange and mint leaves, dressed in a lovely orange sauce. The peppy flavour of mint is a perfect match for the tanginess of this salad, and the result is awesome. Refrigerate the Orange, Grapefruit and Mint Salad for at least an hour before serving. If you like fruits in your salad check out our section of Fruit Based Salads that are made using fruits, or a combination of fruits with vegetables and pulses.
13.  
 by Tarla Dalal
Drink your vegetables for a change! In addition to tasting great, this melange of carrot, capsicum and tomatoes will do great things for your eyesight. Vitamin c-rich capsicum will also help build immunity and ease stress before you set out for the day.
You must have heard of Bajra Khichdi, a famous Rajasthani delicacy. While that is a wholesome dish, here is something even more nourishing, fortified with more healthy stuff like whole moong, green peas and tomatoes. These not only add more crunch and tang to the khichdi, but also add more fibre, iron and protein, making the Bajra, Whole Moong and Green Pea Khichdi a complete meal in its own right.
Some foods are so easy to make yet so beneficial, you feel like saying – oh, why didn’t I know about this earlier! Well, the Anti-cancer and Anti-inflammation Spinach Juice is a perfect example. An apt blend of ingredients like spinach and tomatoes gives it a nice taste and consistency, while at the same time these ingredients are bursting with nutrients that work against cancer and inflammation, two of today’s killer diseases. Because we do not strain the juice, make sure you blend it really well. Give the mixer a break in between to avoid over-heating. Once done, chill the juice and serve to boost the taste. If you don’t want it cold, you can have it right away! You can also try other nice juices like the Muskmelon Watermelon and Wheat Grass Juice and Palak, Kale and Apple Juice .
16.  
 by Tarla Dalal
Calcium is a nutrient that is required by people of all age groups, for healthy growth and maintenance of bones and teeth. Here is how you can get a tasty calcium-boost from a surprise ingredient – nachni. A millet that is not consumed frequently by most of us, nachni or ragi is one of the greatest sources of calcium. When prepared into a unique and delicious pancake, along with other ingredients like calcium-rich paneer, aromatic sesame seeds, flavourful onions and protein-rich besan, it turns out into a really tasty and useful treat. Serve these pancakes immediately on preparation, along with peppy green chutney. Every single member of your family will enjoy – and benefit from this treat.
17.  
 by Tarla Dalal
The taste and nutrient value of jowar is seldom remembered, but after you try this recipe, it will stay in your memory forever! A perfect combination of jowar and methi, along with flavourful onions, coriander and green chillies, makes this sumptuous Jowar Methi Roti a tasteful way to boost your haemoglobin levels.
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