Plasma is a component of blood that some medical procedures require. When donating plasma, a technician draws blood with a needle. A specialized machine then separates the red blood cells and plasma and returns the blood to you. The body often replaces donated plasma within 24 to 48 hours. You can donate plasma twice in a seven-day period with at least two days in between in the United States. However, you may want to eat a high-protein diet to help increase your plasma between donations.
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Follow a diet that consists of 50 to 80 grams of protein per day. The donation center will test your protein levels each time you want to donate. If your protein levels are not in the acceptable range, you will not be able to donate. The normal range for protein levels is 6.0 to 8.3 grams per deciliter.
Eat lean meats, such as poultry, lean cuts of beef and seafood, to obtain your protein intake. Lean meats are better for your health because they are high in protein and low in calories and saturated fat.
Eat eggs for breakfast or other meals. Eggs are a very good source of protein and contain all of the essential amino acids, which will help you increase your protein levels. A hard-boiled egg, for instance, has over 6 grams of protein.
Snack on protein-rich foods, such as seeds, nuts and legumes. Soybeans are a good source of protein. In a 1-cup serving, soybeans contain more than 22 grams of protein. You can also have a snack of peanut butter or add peanut butter to your smoothie to increase protein. A 2-tablespoon serving of peanut butter has 8 grams of protein.
Add low-fat dairy to your meals. Drink a cup of milk with dinner, add cheeses or eat yogurt for dessert to help boost your protein levels before a plasma donation. A 1-cup serving of cottage cheese has more than 23 grams of protein.
Make a protein shake for breakfast. Mix one scoop of protein powder with 2 tablespoons of peanut butter and milk in a blender for the most protein per serving.
- American Red Cross: Plasma Donation
- DonatingPlasma.org: Eligibility and Health
- Plasma Protein Therapeutic Association: Frequently Asked Questions
- Straight Health: Top 5 Ways to Increase Your Protein Intake
- USDA Nutrient Database: Nutrient Data for 01129, Egg, Whole, Cooked, Hard-Boiled
- USDA Nutrient Database: Nutrient Data for 11451, Soybeans, Green, Cooked, Boiled, Drained, Without Salt
- USDA Nutrient Database: Nutrient Data for 16098, Peanut Butter, Smooth Style, With Salt
- USDA Nutrient Database: Nutrient Data for 01012, Cheese, Cottage, Creamed, Large or Small Curd
- Medline Plus: Total Protein