The town of Sweetly was a very special town indeed, every day millions and millions of doughnuts would be made in the factories throughout the town. All the people of Sweetly lived off the doughnuts made each day, so it was vital that everything was always running smoothly. Every so often a very wise old man would come to inspect each factory to make sure that the doughnuts were just right.
Today was the day that Tom’s strawberry jam doughnut factory would be inspected and he was feeling a little nervous for he had spotted a few problems recently. In fact, his doughnuts didn’t seem to be giving anyone any energy anymore and the people of the town were complaining that they became pale and after having them. At sport’s day the children of the school that ate his doughnuts became out of breath very quickly and couldn’t run as well. Tom didn’t know what was the matter with his doughnuts; he had never had this problem before!
The inspector took his time looking all around the different bits of the factory and finally came to talk to Tom.
‘There are many different reasons why a strawberry jam doughnut factory stops working normally’ said the kind inspector. ‘Sometimes there just isn’t enough dough to make up the doughnut, but usually there just aren’t enough strawberries being put into the factory to make the jam that fills up each and every doughnut. Very occasionally at the final stage when the doughnuts are being cooked there is a mistake and they all get burnt instead!’
‘Whatever is the matter with my factory!’ cried Tom, very worried.
‘There is no need to be distressed at all Tom’ soothed the inspector, ‘I can clearly see that there’s been a strawberry shortage recently in the town and the jam isn’t as good as it usually has been. This is easily fixed! I’m going to give you some additional deliveries of strawberries each day, so that the doughnuts become nice and full with jam once more’.
Tom was very relieved, and soon after the extra strawberries started being delivered the people of Sweetly recovered and became full of life and energy again!
Inside each human body there is a system that acts just like Tom’s factory. The doughnuts that he makes each day are what we call red blood cells, and the jam that fills them up is known as hemoglobin. To make up the jam Tom uses strawberries, and inside each of us to make up the hemoglobin we need to eat enough iron. When problems start to occur in our internal doughnut factories, we call this Anemia, and just like the inspector said there could be lots of different reasons why someone might have Anemia. In Tom’s case he didn’t have enough strawberries, or iron, and so the hemoglobin inside his red blood cells wasn’t providing enough energy. Just as Tom got extra strawberries delivered to him each day to fix this problem, someone with this type of Anemia can take extra iron each day to make their red blood cells normal again, and soon feel all better!