Tisha was losing weight tremendously. She started eating more than her appetite thinking, and she wasn’t eating enough which was causing her to lose weight. But no matter how much she ate, nothing helped. She was worried about the whole situation, and when nothing helped, she thought of consulting the doctor.
Tisha consulted her doctor about the weight loss. She got numerous tests done and, She found out she had overactive thyroid or using the jargon Hyperthyroidism.
Tisha’s story helped us learn that there might be some underlying conditions that one might not be aware of causing weight loss. The root cause is not always known to us. Here are some reasons for weight loss, along with their symptoms. So, if any of these symptoms are something that you’re going through, consult a professional.
Hyperthyroidism: Hyperthyroidism is a condition where the thyroid glands release high thyroid hormone levels into the body. It leads to boost up the metabolism, eventually causing weight loss.
Reasons for this condition may be that you’re eating too much iodine, thyroiditis, or inflammation of the thyroid, tumours of the ovaries/testes.
Under this condition, one must avoid eating iodine-rich foods such as salt, dairy products, fish, etc.
- Weight loss
- Irregular heartbeat
- Excessive hunger and sweating
- Hair loss
- Irregular menstruations
- Anti-thyroid medications
- Radioactive iodine
- Surgery (special cases)
Diabetes: Type 1 Diabetes can be another reason for weight loss in which the pancreas produces little or no insulin. It is caused by genes or viruses around. It happens when the body’s immune system, which is for fighting infection, attacks and destroys the pancreas’s insulin-producing beta cells.
So without insulin, there’s high glucose (sugar) in the body which is then released by the kidneys in the form of urine. With excessive urination, your body becomes dehydrated and loses calories not used by the body, which causes weight loss.
- Weight loss
- Excessive thirst and fatigue
- Blurred vision
- Excessive hunger
- Insulin therapy
- Healthy diet
Depression: One of the most common reasons for weight loss is that you’re suffering from depression. A person with clinical depression suffers from loss of appetite, and often, it remains unnoticed for a longer period as a person isn’t in a state to thinking rationally.
The person suffering losses interest in everything and has frequent mood swings. If the condition is left unattended, it might lead to major health issues.
- Mood swings
- Poor appetite
- Restless sleep
Rheumatoid Arthritis: Rheumatoid Arthritis is an inflammatory disease where your immune system attacks its healthy cells/tissues causing inflammation, joint pain, swelling.
If left untreated for a long time, the inflammation, damage in the joint increase metabolism weakens muscles causing weight loss. It may also cause bone erosion and joint deformity.
- Joint, back, and muscle pain
- Dry mouth
There’s no cure for RA rheumatoid arthritis, but these things can help slow it down.
- Medications – anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDS)
IBD Or Inflammatory bowel disease: IBD refers to the condition when there is chronic inflammation in your digestive tract. This condition has two types.
- Ulcerative colitis: It causes inflammation and ulcers, as the name suggests, in the intestine lining, colon, and rectum.
- Crohn’s disease. It causes inflammation deeper in the layers of your digestive tract
It causes Nausea and pain, which leads to loss of appetite leading to weight loss. It is triggered by certain food items like fatty, greasy food items, sugary beverages, etc.
- Abdominal pain
- Blood in stools
- Anti-inflammatory medicines
- Vitamins and supplements (probiotics)
Endocarditis: In the reasons for weight loss list, this is one the most Dangerous cause. Endocarditis is an infection of the heart’s inner lining, usually involving the heart valves, endocardium as the name suggests.
It is caused when bacteria and germs travel via the blood to your heart, causing the infection. In severe cases, it causes an increase in body temperature and fatigue eventually, causing weight loss.
- Heart murmur
- Surgery (removal of valves, in special cases)
Cancer: According to statistics, many cancer patients say the first visible effect of cancer is weight loss. As the tumour grows, it causes inflammation which leads to muscle and weight loss.
To fight cancer, the body produces cytokines, which leads to loss of appetite. Cancers of the oesophagus, pancreas, stomach, and lung are few cancers that cause weight loss.
- Change in bowel habits
- Frequent vomiting and NauseaNausea
- Blood in urine
- Radiation therapy
These were few reasons for weight loss; unexplainable weight loss is a serious thing and mustn’t be avoided. It is normal for the human body to fluctuate between weights but, If you’re facing any abnormalities with your usual eating habits or any other symptom that’s there for a longer span of time, you must consult a doctor immediately.
When to see a doctor for weight loss?
If you're experiencing a huge leap of weight loss unwillingly or if you're facing any of the above-mentioned abnormalities, you must consult a doctor.
What can I do about my loss of appetite?
You can increase your physical activity, exercise more, and you can plan your meals, try something you like. Start with small portions and then increase with time.