Every year the American Red Cross hunts me down and floods me with letters. They’re always on the same topic and I always immediately give in, which undoubtedly leads to more and more badgering. But the issue that they advertise for is an important one: blood donations. Over the years, I’ve donated enough blood to make Countess Elizabeth swoon at the sight of me. Every chance I get, I’m there. In high school my idiot friends and I would race to see who could fill the bag the fastest (the key to winning is to not pass out). The ease of access surely helped. I mean, who didn’t want to skip literature every chance they got?
Now that I’m out in the real world donating blood is a little more difficult. The Red Cross visits my employer and is only a short walk away from my office, but a stack of tasks and meetings can sometimes prevent me from going. As adults donating blood is never going to be truly convenient. Most of us never have an hour to spare during the day. When something prevents me from attending, I do all that I can to restructure my schedule. If not, I push my friends to take the time out of their day.
A little bit of logic helps to put things in perspective:
- Donating blood saves up to three lives.
- On average, I like one out of every six people.
- In order to satisfy the hero complex that I may or may not have, I need to donate twice. This makes sure that I can help someone I would actually like.
Whether or not the numbers are propaganda, the fact remains that donating always helps. Perhaps it won’t save three innocent schoolchildren like you imagine in your mind, but it will help someone. That person might be a dick, so you should always donate multiple times to increase your odds of helping someone who isn’t an intolerable twat.
After donating blood there are always specific food recommendations to get you back on track to running that marathon (over to your fridge filled with cheese). Here’s a quick recipe to help get some of your levels back to normal.
Sautéed Spinach (Iron and Folate)
You’re going to need iron when you’re done squeezing that little stress ball, and one of the best snacks for that is going to be loads of spinach. You can eat it in a bowl or you can follow this quick recipe to sauté it.
1 pound of spinach
3 cloves of garlic
Rinse the spinach to remove any dirt that may have made it through production, and then dry the spinach as much as you can. Try patting it dry with paper towels or using a salad spinner.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat and add the garlic. Once the garlic is sizzling, add the spinach. If you’ve properly dried the spinach you shouldn’t have to worry about the spattering of oil. If you haven’t, I wish you good luck.
Use a spatula to turn and rotate the spinach so it is sufficiently coated in oil and the garlic has been mixed throughout. Cover the pan and let it cook for a minute or two, and then uncover, flip, cover again. Give it about two more minutes and then remove the pan from the heat.
Drain moisture from pan. Add salt to taste (or additional olive oil and garlic, it’s your call) and serve immediately.
Post and recipe by Ian Sims. Photo from Renewing All Things.