Malnutrition in adults
Being healthy is far more important than being attractive or interesting. We seem to be concerned about our weight mostly. But do we ever care for our inner organs? How often do we check whether they are working properly or not?
We can live healthy and hearty only if we are in good health. Now, good health does not refer to being slim or fat. Malnutrition is seen in many people in our society because of a dietary deficiency. People may eat too much of the wrong type of food and suffer from malnutrition. Malnutrition results from a poor diet or a lack of balanced diet. It happens when the intake of nutrients or energy is too high, too low, or poorly balanced. It is advised to put an hour for you, all day.
Poor diet may lead to deficiency of vitamins, minerals, and other essential substances. Too little protein can lead to kwashiorkor, symptoms of which include a distended abdomen. A lack of vitamin C can result in scurvy.
It is important to make sure nutritional requirements are met at every age. Intake of sufficient nutrition, while aging promotes good health. Malnutrition is a serious, but common, health problem that occurs when your diet does not contain the right amount of nutrients in the right proportion. You may be surprised to know that even if you are obese you can be malnourished. Actually the availability of high-calorie, nutrient-poor foods is the key component to the rise of obesity worldwide. On top of it, modern agriculture and food processing techniques lower the micro-nutrient content of foods.
If you have problem in absorbing nutrients from food, this may be because of sedentary lifestyle, long term health condition, or low income.
If we have nutritional deficiencies, the symptoms might be:
Malnutrition in older adults can lead to a number of health problems, including the following:
1. Unintentional weight loss
2. Tiredness and fatigue
3. Muscle weakness
5. Poor memory
6. Weak immune system
8. Stunted growth
9. Skin infections
10. Hair loss
11. Prolonged diarrhea
12. Renal failure
It is possible to prevent malnutrition only through balance diet.
Carbohydrates: Carbohydrates help your body get the energy. They also help in protein storage in the body. The brain requires carbohydrates to get energy, but insufficient carbohydrate intake for a month can stop the metabolism of fatty acids. This results in protein loss from the body and weakens it, causing malnutrition.
It is advised to take 50 to 100 grams of carbohydrates for preventing the development of the ketones. The food products that include carbohydrates are wheat, oats, sugars, white rice, pasta and honey.
Fruits and vegetables: It is advisable to obtain the vitamin intake from fresh fruits and vegetables. Include them in your daily diet.
Protein: Protein is a vital nutrient present in each cell of the human body. Proteins also provide the body with special nitrogen which cannot be obtained from carbohydrates or lipids. Proteins are useful in regulating the pH, or acid-base balance in your blood. These are required for the synthesis of hormones and enzymes. These are also essential for cell formation and immune system. During starvation, large amounts of muscle tissues get wasted and this leads to poor health. Protein in an adequate amount is required to metabolize and process energy in the liver and the kidneys.
It is recommended to consume 10 - 35 per cent of your daily calories as protein. Foods that include protein are legumes, eggs, nuts, oatmeal, grains, wheat, quinoa, peanut butter, canned meat, fish and popcorn.
Fats: Fats play an essential role in maintaining healthy skin and hair when consumed in our daily diet. They also help in insulating our body organs against shock, maintain the body temperature and give healthy cell functioning. Fats are useful to store energy in the body. In addition, fats are also a good source of essential fatty acids that are useful to prevent many diseases, including malnutrition.
It is recommended that 30- 35 per cent of the daily calorie must come from fat. The food products that include fats are peanut butter, oil, whole milk, ensure, nuts and seeds.
Vitamins and minerals: Vitamins play a vital role in performing crucial functions in the body. Vitamins and minerals promote good health and give protection against infection and many diseases. They also help in growth of the body, metabolism and elimination of waste products. It is advised to take these from the dietary sources, but if found insufficient they can also be taken from supplements as an alternative. They very well help in malnutrition prevention.
Balanced diet: Consuming a balanced diet with multi-vitamins is one way to prevent malnutrition. This can also help you in getting rid of dental problems, inflammation, edema, weakness, tongue soreness, anemia, fatigue, diarrhea, dermatitis, tingling in the hands, poor growth, poor nerve function and bleeding gums.
Keep in mind that if you are not good you cannot keep others good!
Be nice to yourself, stay healthy, and beautiful!