Eating and having a well-balanced diet is essential for keeping our body in a healthy condition. Every day, we eat as a means of being sustenance to our bodies. Naturally, most individuals want to ensure that they are getting all the essential vitamins and nutrients for the body. Our body’s chemistry is relatively complex, and it needs different types of nutrients to ensure that it’s in good condition.
When most people think of malnutrition, they usually think of people getting hungry to the point where they cannot sustain themselves anymore. Although this is somewhat true, malnutrition is a slightly complex issue. But how severe is malnutrition as an issue? Recent studies have shown that 1.9 billion adults worldwide are overweight while 462 million individuals are underweight. Imbalances in nutrition cause both figures.
Contrary to what most people believe, most individuals who have access to good food sources throughout the day can still get malnutrition. So what usually causes malnutrition in the first place? How do you address it? Let’s answer some questions regarding malnutrition and what you can do to stop it.
Significant Factors that Cause Malnutrition
But before discussing some fundamental ways of addressing malnutrition, let’s first understand the factors that usually lead to malnutrition. Essentially, there’s no one cause of malnutrition. In most cases, malnutrition happens due to a variety of environmental factors. Here are some factors you need to be mindful of.
Eating and Mental Health Disorders
One of the most prevalent causes of malnutrition usually comes in the form of eating disorders and mental health issues that can eventually cause problems to the way individuals take in food daily.
Mental disorders such as anxiety and depression are not necessarily related to food disorders. However, they can still contribute to malnutrition since this can shift a person’s eating habits. It is uncommon for most individuals not to eat for long periods when they have anxiety and depression.
However, many disorders are related to eating disorders. Anorexia and bulimia are some of the most prevalent mental disorders that are directly related to eating habits. Bulimia is a condition wherein individuals eat a lot of food while trying to vomit it out as a means of losing weight. On the other hand, anorexia is a condition where affected people eat very little food, which can cause malnutrition.
But the good news here is that many organizations are aware of the problem with eating disorders. Are you looking for medical treatment for them? You won’t have to look far since treatment centers for anorexia nervosa, binge eating disorder, and other disorders are available in several locations.
However, some serious health complications lead to malnutrition. This can include the following:
- Certain types of cancer can cause malnutrition. In most cases, cancer affects a particular body system that can hinder organ functionality. Cancer in the gastrointestinal system affects how the body processes nutrients. Additionally, certain types of cancer treatments can also strain the body, which can use up more energy than usual.
- Another health complication that can affect how our body metabolizes nutrients comes in the form of liver disease. Our liver plays an integral role in regulating chemicals and nutrients that go inside our bodies. Liver disease can significantly affect how the body receives and processes nutrients. Not only can this impact an individual’s metabolism, but this can lead to near-fatal conditions due to gastrointestinal blood loss.
What are some excellent ways of addressing malnutrition? This depends on the leading cause of malnutrition. If you’re not sure what the major influencers of malnutrition are, you might want to consider getting professional help narrowing down the reasons.
Although malnutrition can be caused by something as simple as a mismanaged diet, serious health conditions should never be overlooked. If malnutrition stems from mental health issues, you should see therapists and behavioral psychologists.
Although it might seem like not getting the entire amount of nutrients in a day is a trivial matter, this can result in many serious health complications in the long run. Making fundamental changes to your lifestyle and having a well-balanced diet without compromising your daily nutritional needs is key to addressing and preventing malnutrition.
Still, it’s important to note that we are different, and malnutrition can have varying effects on a person’s health. In some cases, these complications can lead to eating disorders and an inability to absorb nutrients. There are other cases that this can affect the functionality of organs and the eating behavior of most individuals. Regardless of the condition, getting professional help and supervision is key to better health.