How long does it take to regenerate donated blood?

How long it takes to regenerated the blood after blood donation depends on the individual.  And it also depends on what source you are citing.

According to American Red Cross, …

“The plasma from your donation is replaced within about 24 hours. Red cells need about four to six weeks for complete replacement. That’s why at least eight weeks are required between whole blood donations.”

According to

“It takes a couple of days to replace plasma, the watery substance of your blood. Making red blood cells take a little longer, but a healthy donor can replace those that were donated within two weeks.” 

Typical amount of blood taken when donating blood in the United States is 500 milli-Liters (about 1 pint and roughly 1 pound, or roughly 10% of your blood assuming typical amount of 5 liters of blood in body).

And it typically take 10 minutes for that amount to come out.  But the prelim check and paper work can take more time.  Plus after the donation, you need to wait at the facility for another 15 minutes to see if you are okay and don’t faint.

To avoid faintness, drink a lot of water or fruit juice before and after the donation — at least two glasses before the donation.  But best to drink well within the 24 hours prior to donation. This helps keep the blood pressure up.  Blood pressure drop is the primary cause of fainting.

When blood pressure drops, the body boosts it back up by having the adrenal glands secrete more aldosterone.  Those with adrenal fatigue may have problems producing aldosterone and hence may be more prone to fainting during donation.

Also have a hearty meal before the donation (within three hours of donation). This keeps the blood sugar level up.   And a hearty meal afterwards as well.  Don’t do strenuous exercise for another 24 hours.

Direct-to-Consumer Lab Tests

In the past few years, there has been a spawning of various direct to consumer lab testing. These are places online where you can order your own medical tests, go to a local blood draw location (such as LabCorp or Quest Diagnostic), and get your results online. No doctor visits nor referral are needed. All the standard blood tests like cholesterol, glucose, vitamin D, B12, etc are available.

These are great for people who do not have insurance or have a high deductible insurance. And they just want to check their basic health status every once in a while without needing a doctor’s visit. It is sometimes difficult to get a doctor’s appointment without insurance. Because the first thing they ask is what insurance you have.

For those who do have insurance, there might be times when you want to get a test done, but your doctor says that it is not warranted. You can now get your own test done.

Also there are certain tests that you might want to run more frequently without having to always make a doctor’s visit. We all know that doctors are quite busy and have a full queue of patients. An example is a diabetic who wants to get an glycated hemoglobin A1C test done every three months to check to see if diet and exercise is having an effect.

With the Internet as a research tool, many consumers are savvy as to what tests to run and what the results means. For those individuals, they can save the time and expense with direct-to-consumer lab testing.

However, there are others consumers who would be better off seeing a physician in the traditional setting. These do-it-yourself testing is not for everyone.

Of course, there are certain medical conditions where a physician is definitely recommended for everyone.

What Others are Saying about Direct to Consumer Lab Testing

Here is what the media is saying about direct-to-consumer lab testing …

Direct-to-Consumer Lab Testing sites

Here are some direct-to-consumer lab testing sites…

  • — Chris Kresser mentions the use of this lab on his site.
  • — Jimmy Moore mentions this one on his site.
  • — They have Cyrex gluten sensitivity and autoimmune antibody screening tests.
  • — They say “You Can Only Improve What You Measure”. They have an health platform that track your biomarker results.

How common is gluten sensitivity?

Gluten sensitivity is a broader category of which celiac disease is only a small subset.  The estimation of amount of gluten-sensitive people varies widely.  Here are some references on the web …

  • 60% to 70% of the population may be gluten-sensitive [reference]
  • I’ve long suspected that everyone has some degree of sensitivity to gluten, even if they’ve never been formally diagnosed and even if they don’t notice any overt symptoms after eating it. …  It might be 12%, or maybe 30%, or perhaps even a higher (or lower) percentage of the population.” – Mark Sisson

Diet with 50% Fat from Calories

The are some people who believe in eating more healthy fats in the diet.

You absorb more nutrition from salads if you have some fat in your salad or salad dressing rather than to use low-fat dressings.[source: sciencedaily]

Dr. Rosedale say in one of his website Q&A that …

“Yes, the major portion of your diet should be composed of healthy fats.”


Dr. Mercola’s interview of Paul Jaminet is summarized Mercola’s site where Jaminet recommends the following as the optimal balance between carbohydrates, proteins, and fats …

  • 20-30 percent of daily calories from carbohydrates
  • 15 percent of daily calories from protein
  • 55-65 percent from healthy fats

However, one issue that Jaminet and Rosedale differ on is the amount of carbohydrates that one should consume. Jaminet allows for more carbs and says rice and potatoes are “safe starches”. He believes that it is possible to go too low on carbs resulting in “glucose deficiency” and certain negative health effects. Rosedale believes that there are no “safe starches” and that one can never be too low on carbs.

After hearing both Jaminet’s and Rosedale point of view, Dr. Mercola tend to side with Jaminet’s view in that it is possible to go too low in carbs as Dr. Mercola has personally experienced. (reference Dr. Mercola and Paul Jaminent interview)

Dr. Mercola writes article mentioning that he himself consumes 60% to 70% of his calories from healthy fats.

Kurt Harris MD writes on his Archevore blog that …

“Archevore eaters typically range from 5-35% carbohydrate, from 10-30% protein and from 50 to 80% fat (mostly from animals) …”

Archevore is a diet framework and in the link provided has quite a few other healthy tips.

Mark Sisson’s article says that during training he consumes up to 50% of his calories from of healthy fats plus a lot of anti-oxidants.

Dave Asprey writes that he eats 50% of his calories from fat and puts butter and MCT oil into his coffee. MCT oil stands for medium chain triglyceride oil of which coconut oil is among them.  Dave Asprey has a recipe for putting butter in coffee.

Paul Jaminet often drinks coffee with half coffee and half heavy cream [from his book The Perfect Health Diet]

Essay by Stephanie Seneff writes that fats and cholesterol are healthy especially for the brain. She says …

“… aim for something like 50% fat, 30% protein, and 20% carbohydrate, so as to pro-actively defend against Alzheimer’s.”

The idea that saturated fat is unhealthy is false. She writes her opinion as follow …

“You would practically have to be as isolated as an Australian Aborigine not to have absorbed the message that dietary fats, particularly saturated fats, are unhealthy. I am extremely confident that this message is false”


Because of this reasoning, many are now adopting a low-carb high-fat style of diet. Dr. Andreas Eenfeldt has an good explanation of the low-carb high-fat style of diet on his site

Dr. Andrew Weil has said on his site that his “thinking on saturated fat has evolved”, citing studies that indicates no difference in coronary heart risk between low saturated fat consumers and high saturated fat consumers. He says that …

“refined starches and sugars are more likely than saturated fat to be the main dietary cause of coronary heart disease and type-2 diabetes.” [reference]

Heart surgeon Dr. Dwight Lundell speaks out as in an article saying that it is sugar that causes heart disease rather than fat. [reference]

If you want to learn more about a group that went on a low-carb high-fat diet, watch the documentary My Big Fat Diet. Or to learn about lipid metabolism in Kevin Ahern’s Biochemistry YouTube Channel.