SYMPTOMS OF MALNUTRITION :
A lack of appetite or interest in food or drink
Tiredness and irritability
An inability to concentrate
Always feeling cold
Loss of fat, muscle mass, and body tissue
A higher risk of getting sick and taking longer to heal
Longer healing time for wounds
- A higher risk of complications after surgery
Eventually, a person may also experience difficulty breathing and heart failure.
In children :
Lack of growth and low body weight.
Tiredness and a lack of energy.
Irritability and anxiety.
Slow behavioral and intellectual development, possibly resulting in learning difficulties
CAUSES OF MALNUTRITION
Malnutrition can occur for various reasons :
A low intake of food
Some people develop malnutrition because there is not enough food available or because they have difficulty eating or absorbing nutrients.
This can happen as a result of:
- Liver disease
- Conditions that cause nausea or make it difficult to eat or swallow
- Taking medications that make eating difficult due to nausea, for example
Mouth problems such as badly fitting dentures may also contribute to malnutrition.
Mental health conditions
Undernutrition or malnutrition can affect people with:
- Anorexia nervosa
Social and mobility problems
Factors that can affect a person’s eating habits and potentially lead to malnutrition include:
- Being unable to leave the house or reach a store to buy food
- Finding it physically difficult to prepare meals
- Living alone, which can affect a person’s motivation to cook and eat
- Having limited cooking skills
- Not having enough money to spend on food
Digestive disorders and stomach conditions
If the body does not absorb nutrients efficiently, even a healthful diet may not prevent malnutrition.
Examples of digestive and stomach conditions that may cause this include:
- Crohn's disease
- Ulcerative colitis
- Celiac disease
- Persistent diarrhea, vomiting, or both
Alcohol use disorder
Consuming a lot of alcohol can lead to gastritis or long-term damage to the pancreas. These issues can make it hard to digest food, absorb vitamins, and produce hormones that regulate metabolism.
Alcohol also contains calories, so a person may not feel hungry after drinking it. They may therefore not eat enough healthful food to supply the body with essential nutrients.
DIAGNOSIS OF MALNUTRITION
- Blood tests for general screening and monitoring
- Tests for specific nutrients, such as iron or vitamins
- Prealbumin tests, as malnutrition commonly affects levels of this protein
Albumin tests, which may indicate liver or kidney disease.
HOMEOPATHIC TREATMENT FOR MALNUTRITION
NATRUM MURIATICUM : Suitable for thin children having dry skin, earthy complexion with markedely thin neck.Useful for cross and irritable child who cry easily.There is great weakness and tiredness and get easily exhausted.Useful when child is anaemic too.
SILICEA : Especially suited to weak, malnourished children who are thin and have emaciated bodies but with large heads and pale waxy face. There is a tendency to excessive sweating on the scalp, feet.Given when patient is having poor stamina with a tendency to get easily exhausted.Also there is weak muscles and bones .
ABROTANUM : Well indicated where emaciation of legs is prominent. Suited to pale, old looking faces, which are wrinkled with blue rings around the eyes.Given for malnourished and having poor assimilation of food with decreased in muscle strength.
CALCAREA PHOS : Mostly indicated for children who are emaciated with large abdomen and necks appear too thin and limbs are cold.Useful for weak digestion.There is weak, thin and brittle bones along with anaemia.