What is a loss of appetite? Sudden loss of appetite is also known as Anorexia in medical term and it occurs when you lost desired to eat. This problem occurs because of many problems which may be related to mental or physical illness. Sudden Lack of appetite can lead to sudden weight loss or malnutrition. This can be a serious health issue if left untreated. For a better treatment, you need to understand cause and symptoms. And you should know when to see a doctor due to the sudden loss of appetite.
Loss of Appetite Causes
Lack of appetite can occur due to various reasons. This can be a serious problem for many people. Many people feel a complete loss of appetite and this is an alarming situation. Reason for this problem includes:-
- Loss of appetite during pregnancy- For pregnant women, it is a very common problem. During the first trimester, many women suffer from morning sickness or mood swings due to hormone changes. But during 2nd trimester they start feeling a decrease in appetite. They lost the desire to eat which may cause difficulty in pregnancy if it’s left untreated. Basically, loss of appetite during pregnancy occurs due to nausea.
- Lack of Appetite Due to Bacteria and Virus- Sometimes people suffering from flu or viral because of bacteria and virus may feel decreased appetite. Respiratory infection, viral fever, common cold, pneumonia, gastric problem, colitis, skin infection, diarrhoea etc. can cause anorexia.
- Lack of Appetite due Bad Metabolism- People having bad metabolism may suffer the loss of appetite.
- Use of Cocaine and Heroin causes Loss of Appetite- Use of drugs like cocaine, heroin or LCD etc. can cause anorexia.
- Complete loss of appetite due to Alcohol- Excessive alcohol drinking may lead to complete loss of appetite. Alcohol may cause you stomach infection and reduce desired to eat. This is a temporary problem which will take a couple of days to be normal.
- Sudden loss of Appetite Due to Stress or Depression- One of the common reason behind loss appetite or loss of desire to eat is stress.
- Other Causes for Loss of Appetite- Many people suffer from loss of appetite because of trouble in sleeping, mood swings, fatigue, tiredness etc.
- Decreased Appetite due to Medical Condition- Many medical illnesses can cause loss of appetite which includes-
- Heart Disease
- Kidney stone or kidney failure
- Liver disease such as jaundice or liver failure.
- Stomach infection
- Pain in pancreas
Signs & Symptoms of Loss of Appetite
Loss of appetite or anorexia is not a serious problem but if it persists and not treated on time can lead to weight loss and malnutrition. People with some specific medical illness may feel different symptom which mentions below.
- Lost desired to eat is one of the very common symptoms. People suffering from anorexia can go long for a long period of time without having any food.
- Sudden weight loss
- Feeling weak
- Trouble in Sleeping
- Sometime people may develop the fever.
Sudden Loss of Appetite Risk Factors
Anorexia can occur due to mental illness or physical illness. If you don’t have the desire to eat for a long time it means you need to see a doctor and other risk factors which includes.
- If you are suffering from any disease then the loss of appetite may delay your recovery.
- Anorexia will slow down your wound healing.
- You will go through sleeping disorder or couldn’t sleep properly.
- You might have ulcer problem
- Weakness and tiredness
- You may feel a severe headache
- Can disturb your menstrual cycle due to weakness.
- Mood sickness and stress
Why does cancer cause a lack of Appetite?
It is very common for a cancer patient to lost desire to eat food. Mainly it happens because of medication and cancer treatment such as chemotherapy or immunotherapy. The cancer treatment causes many changes to the patient digestive system and metabolism. It also disturbs their hormone production which causes lack of appetite or complete loss of appetite. Many other factors can lead to loss of appetite for cancer patient which includes:-
- Dizziness, fatigue, tiredness, sleepiness because of medications.
- Vomiting and nausea
- Abdominal pain
- Depression or anxiety
- Cancer patient sometimes develop mouth ulcer, sore throat, difficulty in swallowing, throat infection etc. which make them feel less hungry or make difficult to eat food.
- Enlarged spleen
- Compressed stomach due to cancer treatment.
When to See a Doctor
Loss of appetite is very common and not a serious issue for some people. But if you are suffering from any disease and don’t feel eating food for a long time then you must see a doctor. It is important to understand why you are not eating well or not feeling hungry. Understand causes and symptoms of loss of appetite for better treatment. Loss of appetite may lead to malnutrition and vitamin deficiency in the body. So consult with a doctor if you don’t feel the desire to eat for a long time.
Tips to Increase Appetite Naturally
- First of start eating meal 5 times in a day. It means to divide your meal into breakfast, morning snacks, lunch, evening snacks and dinner.
- Increase intake of nuts, dry fruits and other nutrients foods.
- If you don’t feel hungry then set an alarm to remind you that it’s time to refill your belly.
- Do not take any medication empty stomach unless your doctor recommends.
- Drink more water.
- Avoid food that may cause a gastric problem.
- Eat food good environment.
- Eat slowly and chew more.
- Do not drink water or any other fluid after having your meal at least wait for one hour.
- Do not eat hot food.
- If you don’t feel hungry cook your favourite recipes.
- Go for walk after having dinner.
- Do some physical activity to increase your appetite.
- Consume more calories
- Do not skip your breakfast at any cost.
Lack of appetite or anorexia can occur because of many factors which include physical illness, mental illness, certain medications and vitamin or mineral deficiencies in the body. Small changes in your lifestyle can also increase your appetite. If you feel that you don’t have the desire to eat for a long time then consult with your doctor. Leave your question and feedback in the comment box below.