As a mommy of three, my children’s health is one of the last things I want to worry about. I pick them up from school, take them to the park, read with them and watch them grow every day. All the while, I often take for granted the very thing that allows them to make such huge contributions to my life: their health.
Thankfully, I am blessed to have three healthy, busy boys at home. But, that’s not the case for all brown mommys. According to the Centers for Disease Control, Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) affects 1 in every 500 African-American births in the U.S. That means there are over 1,000 babies born with SCD each year in the U.S. In central Africa it’s much worse, where up to 2% of all babies are born with SCD. Unfortunately, the children in our lives are those most susceptible to the disease’s catastrophic and often fatal symptoms.
Despite what may seem like insurmountable odds to the thousands of moms whose children are affected by SCD, a new supplement called Xickle RBC-Plus is facing FDA testing and may one day aid in the treatment of the sometimes deadly disease. But that could take up to seven years. Fortunately, the FDA allows Xickle RBC-Plus to be available now as a nutritional supplement. This product was developed from a drug used in Nigeria, and approved by the Nigerian FDA as a treatment for SCD. Dr. Eric Coles, CEO of Xickle, LLC, sat down with Mommy Mendoza to inform all of our brown mommys about the disease and give us the 411 on how Xickle RBC-Plus can aide in keeping all of our children happy, and perhaps more importantly, healthy.
For all of our new moms, what is Sickle Cell Disease and how can they tell if their babies have the disease? Also, how do children “get” Sickle Cell Disease?
Sickle Cell Disease is an inherited disease where the body makes defective hemoglobin, the “red” in red blood cells. This defective hemoglobin (HbS) causes red blood cells to form rigid sickle shapes. These rigid sickled cells clog capillaries and cause pain, organ failure and many other serious problems. All babies born in the U.S. are tested for certain genetic diseases. This includes Sickle Cell Disease.
For a child to get SCD they must inherit defective hemoglobin genes from each parent. The parent probably has one “good” hemoglobin gene and one defective hemoglobin gene. If each parent passes the defective hemoglobin gene to the child, then that child will have sickle cell disease.
What is Xickle RBC-Plus and why is it relevant to African-American moms/parents?
Xickle RBC-Plus is a nutritional supplement that is an upgrade of a product approved for the treatment of SCD in Nigeria. SCD affects over 100,000 people in the U.S., 90% of which are of African-American ancestry. The most critical time for SCD patients is their early years. That is the period when they are most vulnerable and require careful care and treatment. And of course, that is the responsibility of their parents.
Why are people of African ancestry more likely to have Sickle Cell Disease (SCD)?
SCD is most prevalent in countries with a high incidence of malaria where the sickle cell gene originated. That includes areas like sub-Saharan Africa and India. Countries in the Americas that have a large African ancestry population have significant numbers of individuals with SCD. For example, the U.S. has 100,000 and Brazil 500,000 people with SCD. In Nigeria, approximately two percent of the population has SCD, which means there are three million individuals with SCD in Nigeria.
How do the dietary and lifestyle needs of children with Sickle Cell Disease differ from other people?
People with SCD need to follow a healthy diet including an ample supply of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, low-fat dairy and good sources of protein, like lean meats, eggs, seafood, poultry without skin, nuts, seeds, beans and peas. The diet should also be high-calorie and nutrient-dense. People with SCD need to maintain their caloric intake to counter weight loss associated with the disease. SCD patients also need to maintain adequate fluid consumption to stay hydrated. Vitamin and mineral supplements, such as those containing folic acid, are also often recommended to counter some of the effects of the disease.
A reasonable amount of physical activity is also recommended to stay healthy. However, you should avoid activity that makes you very tired. Drink lots of fluids when you exercise. You can consult with your doctor about how much and what kinds of physical activity are safe for you. And of course, get enough sleep.
Xickle RBC-Plus is currently being used as treatment for Sickle Cell disease in Nigeria, tell us more about what’s going on there?
Nigeria produced a similar product to Xickle RBC-Plus, approved for the treatment of SCD. However, they no longer make that product. We have lots of requests for Xickle RBC-Plus from Nigeria. So far, we have been making arrangements with people travelling to Nigeria to personally carry and deliver Xickle RBC-Plus to those customers that order. We are looking for a better way to help those individuals.
Tell us about the natural ingredients in Xickle RBC-Plus.
Xickle RBC-Plus has unique extracts of sorghum, clove and pepper. All are natural food safe ingredients.
Click here for an info-graphic that gives us a brief overview of Xickle RBC-Plus.
This post is provided as part of a paid campaign for Xickle, LLC. However, all opinions are