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iVillage: Oral Fixations: What Your Mouth Can Say About Your Health

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Oral Oddity: Pale Gums

Might mean:

You’re anemic. Anemia occurs when the body lacks enough iron to make hemoglobin, a protein-based component of red blood cells responsible for transferring nourishing oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body, says Maier. So, how do pale gums play in? "Your gums contain a lot of blood vessels,” he says, "and anemia leads to less red blood cells in the blood, which can literally make your gums look less pink. While the fix can be as simple as upping your intake of iron-rich foods like beef, it’s best to speak with your doctor first, since pale gums can indicate other things."

(Getty Images)
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