- 05 August 2019
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Poor Appetite – How It Causes Weight Loss?
Everyone can experience a loss of appetite for various reasons. People may be less interested in eating, losing interest in food, or feeling fed up with the desire of eating. Along with the loss of appetite, fatigue and weight loss can occur if they do not consume enough food to look after their body requirements. Loss of appetite and Energy is a common symptom of an illness. Several conditions can cause decreased appetite. In most cases, your appetite may return normal after the treatment of the underlying condition. Loss of appetite and weight loss is common in many life-threatening diseases, and this is a symptom that some patients call as distress or more than pain.
Weight loss is a result of reducing intake or willingly reducing intake because of calorie-conscious. So, Weight loss can be considered voluntary or involuntary. Progressive involuntary weight loss often due to serious medical problems or mental illness, thus causes a decrease in appetite. Voluntary means people who want to have weight loss, mainly who are overweight or benign obese people. This topic will discuss the approach to poor appetite and weight loss such as What causes a loss of appetite, what problems can be caused by a poor appetite, how to treat for reduced appetite, what happens if poor appetite is not treated.
Poor appetite can be caused due to physical or mental illness. Often temporary due to infection or digestive problems. In this case, appetite returns when a person recovers. Some people may also lose appetite as a symptom of long-term illness, for example, in the final stages of serious illness, including cancer. The medical term for complete loss of appetite over a long period is an anorexia. This is different from anorexia nervosa disorder, which is a mental health problem.
What Causes Poor Appetite and Weight Loss? Some of the bacterial and viral infections also cause loss of appetite, such as:
- An upper respiratory infection
Some of the Health illness causes poor appetite and can be treated, such as:
- Medication side effects
- Alcohol or drug use
- Feeling or being sick
- Oral thrush (an infection in your mouth)
- Hormonal Imbalances
- Changes in taste, which can happen with some treatment
- Food Intolerances
- Acid reflux
- Anxiety, depression, being upset about something
Some of these causes can be treated, and this may improve your appetite. Anorexia is seen in patients with:
- Chronic liver disease
- Kidney failure
- Heart failure
What Problems Can Be Caused By a Poor Appetite?
- You might find that you lose weight
- You may feel weaker than usual; caused by a lack of nutrients.
- Swelling in ankles and feet can be a problem; caused by lack of protein.
You Can Also See Other Changes in Your Body such as:
- Your clothes are too big for you
- If you have dentures that don’t fit, ask your dentist to make adjustments or replacements.
What Causes Weight Loss and What Can be Done?
If you don’t eat enough, it will cause weight loss. You might not feel hungry as usual, and your body might need more protein or energy foods in your diet to prevent weight loss. Please meet our doctors or gastroenterologist at Sunshine Hospital, who can provide you with a list of foods that contains more protein to your body
Some of this might be helpful for good appetite:
- If possible, sit upright while eating or drinking.
- Don’t be hurry while eating your food.
- Try to eat small portions of the meal or snacking more often.
- It may be worth trying soft or liquid food.
- If an illness is a problem, you might need medication for the disease. If you have been prescribed medication for the condition, take it before your meals
- Food supplements can help – ask your doctor for advice.
How to Treat Reduce Appetite? Treatment of appetite decreases depending on the cause. If the reason is a less bacterial or viral infection, treatment is usually not needed for the symptoms because your appetite will heal by itself. If it is a medical cause, then you need treatment. Meet our gastroenterologist doctor at Sunshine Hospital who can provide you with medical care and some of the home care.
What Happens If Poor Appetite is Not Treated?
If your appetite decreases due to a short medical condition, you tend to recover naturally without long-term effects.
However, if a severe medical illness causes this condition, the disease can worsen without treatment. If left untreated, reduced appetite can be associated with more severe symptoms such as:
- Extreme fatigue
- Weight loss
- Fast heartbeat
- General illness or malaise
If your appetite decreases and you experience malnutrition or lack of vitamins and electrolytes, life-threatening complications can occur. So, it is important, and we suggest to visit a gastroenterologist if you have a poor appetite, which is not resolving after the illness by itself or lasts longer than a few weeks.
How Poor Appetite Causes Weight Loss:
- Example: If a patient is suffering from lung cancer reports losing weight before the diagnosis of cancer, often due to the effects of the disease on their body. Unfortunately, many patients lose more weight during the treatment of lung cancer; the main reason for this is due to inadequate calorie intake.
- To recover from the side effects of treatments such as chemo, radiotherapy and surgery, patients often need to take more calories to maintain their weight. Poor appetite, pain, nausea and loss of taste for food are common side effects of lung cancer and its treatment, all of which can cause a reduction in food intake.
- Pain and nausea must be treated first before food and calorie intake. Once controlled, it is recommended to consume food and fluids that provide good calories to the body, and that helps in the maintenance of adequate body weight.
- The doctor recommends a diet that consists of low or and often high-calorie foods. Small portions of food intake work best with reduced appetite, and that food should consist of high calories.
- We suggest you meet the gastroenterologist for the best nutrition tips for cancer patients on how to increase calories.
- Liquid supplements should be consumed for two and three times a day, between meals are also useful for increasing calorie and nutritional requirements.
- If poor appetite and weight loss persist even after the proper intake of food, then the doctor may suggest you with medications that help in increase in your appetite.
Conclusion: Eating will help you to deal with daily life and improve your quality of life. So many factors that can help in poor appetite, if you may already feel defeated. While it’s important to remember that your efforts to increase your appetite may not work, it’s just as important not to give up hope. It may be useful to talk to a gastroenterologist doctor who has experience in treating patients. A gastroenterologist doctor can help you find foods that can help you and manage, and recommend protein drinks and other nutritional supplements. Find ways to arouse your appetite for tips and tricks to reduce your appetite to meet our gastroenterologist doctor who can give the most effective ways to save your appetite for more details contact Sunshine Hospital at 040 4455 0000.
About the Doctor: Dr. Nagarjuna Yarlagadda – Gastroenterologist
Dr. Nagarjuna Yarlagadda is a reputed Gastroenterologist at Sunshine Hospitals, Gachibowli. After getting his MBBS degree from Rangaraya Medical College in Kakinada, he earned his MD from Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences in Chandigarh Dr Nagarjuna has 25 years of experience. He served as Additional Professor of Gastroenterology at NIMS (Nizam Institute of Medical Sciences) and was a consultant gastroenterologist at Krishna Institute of Medical Sciences (KIMS) for 14 years and has rich teaching experience as well. He also serves as a member of the Indian Society of Gastroenterology, INASL and SGI. He has published papers and trials in national and international journals.
About Sunshine Hospitals: A Multi Super Speciality Institution, 500 bedded Sunshine Hospitals (Paradise Circle, Secunderabad) is promoted by globally reputed Joint Replacement Surgeon Dr AV Gurava Reddy (Orthopedic Doctor) and like-minded associates who share the objective of making world-standard healthcare available, affordable and accessible to the common man. Sunshine has now become one of the best hospitals for many treatments including Orthopedic, Gastroenterology, Cardiology, Trauma and Neurology.