TeamAckoNov 20, 2023
Unexplained Weight Loss (UWL) is a common issue that affects millions of people around the world. Although some people may view it as a positive thing, it can be a sign of an underlying health problem. The condition is characterised by a situation where a person loses weight without making any conscious effort to do so. This could be a symptom of an underlying condition that requires medical attention. In this article, we'll take a closer look at the possible causes of UWL and the available treatment options.
Unexplained Weight Loss is a condition where a person loses weight without making any conscious effort to do so. This condition can be a sign of an underlying medical condition such as cancer, diabetes, or hyperthyroidism. It is important to note that UWL is not the same as intentional weight loss through diet and exercise.
There are several possible causes of Unexplained Weight Loss. Some of the most common causes include the following.
UWL could be a sign of cancer. Tumours can cause changes in the body's metabolism, leading to weight loss. If you experience UWL, you should consult a doctor to rule out the possibility of cancer.
Depression can also cause UWL. When a person is depressed, they may lose their appetite and stop eating. This can result in weight loss.
Hyperthyroidism is a condition where the thyroid gland produces too much hormone. This can lead to weight loss, as the body's metabolism is increased.
Diabetes is another possible cause of UWL. When a person has diabetes, their body may not be able to use glucose properly. This can cause the body to burn fat for energy, resulting in weight loss.
Gastrointestinal disorders such as Crohn's disease, celiac disease, and ulcerative colitis can also cause UWL. These conditions can cause malabsorption, where the body is unable to absorb nutrients from food properly.
The most obvious symptom of UWL is a decrease in body weight without making any intentional changes to your diet or exercise routine. Other symptoms may include the following.
Loss of appetite
Changes in bowel habits
The treatment for UWL depends on the underlying cause. If the condition is caused by an underlying medical condition, such as cancer, diabetes, or hyperthyroidism, the doctor will treat the underlying condition.
If the condition is caused by depression, the doctor may prescribe antidepressants or refer the patient to a mental health professional. In some cases, the patient may need to be hospitalised to receive treatment.
Here are some steps that you can take to help prevent Unexplained Weight Loss.
Eat a healthy, balanced diet: Consuming a balanced diet that includes a variety of nutrient-dense foods can help ensure that you are getting the necessary vitamins and minerals that your body needs to function properly. It is also important to avoid crash diets or restrictive eating patterns that can lead to unintended weight loss.
Stay hydrated: Drinking enough water can help keep your body functioning properly, and it can also help prevent dehydration, which can lead to unintended weight loss.
Stay active: Regular exercise can help maintain muscle mass and prevent muscle loss, which can occur with age or inactivity. This can help prevent unintended weight loss and maintain overall health.
Manage stress: Finding ways to manage stress, such as through relaxation techniques or counselling, can help prevent unintended weight loss.
Monitor your weight: Regularly monitoring your weight can help detect any unintended weight loss early on. If you notice a sudden or UWL, it is important to consult with your healthcare provider to determine the underlying cause.
Unexpected weight loss can happen to anyone, the gender of a person doesn’t affect weight loss. However, gender can increase the risk of certain diseases.
Compared to women, men have a higher risk of developing endocarditis, lung cancer, and cancer of the pancreas.
Women have a high chance of developing Hyperthyroidism and 2 to 3 times more likely to have Rheumatoid Arthritis.
Body weight changes are quite normal. However, if you notice a significant change in your weight without making any changes to your diet or exercise routine, it’s best to pay your doctor a visit.
UWL is typically defined as losing more than 5% of your body weight within six to 12 months without making any intentional changes to your diet or exercise routine.
Yes, UWL can be a sign of an underlying health issue that requires medical attention.
Unexplained Weight Loss is diagnosed through a physical exam and medical history. The doctor may also order blood tests, imaging tests, or other diagnostic tests to determine the underlying cause of the weight loss.
In some cases, UWL may not be preventable. However, maintaining a healthy diet and exercise routine can help prevent weight loss caused by malnutrition or a sedentary lifestyle.
If you experience UWL, you should consult a doctor to determine the underlying cause of the weight loss.
Disclaimer: The content on this page is generic and shared only for informational and explanatory purposes. Please consult a doctor before making any health-related decisions.
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