This happens because patients with COPD tend to lose their appetite, or feel shortness of breath when eating. Aside from this, their lungs also require more energy to function because their airways have been blocked.
This combination of factors are the reasons why patients with COPD suffer from malnutrition.
In order to address this, nutritional supplements might be prescribed by doctors to help counteract the effects of malnutrition. In addition, some people with COPD might be required to eat high calorie diets so that they have more energy.
Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative colitis
What causes malnutrition in those with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis is the fact that both of these diseases affect the gastrointestinal tract.
It’s not uncommon for people with these conditions to suffer from chronic diarrhea which leads to dehydration, and malnutrition. Abdominal pain can also cause patients to lose their appetite, and in some cases rectal bleeding can lead to anemia.
In terms of treatment, a change in diet and medication can help mitigate the effects of these diseases.
Mental health disorders
Certain mental health disorders, such as anxiety, depression, bulimia, and anorexia can contribute to malnutrition.
In the case of anxiety and depression, it is not uncommon for patients to not eat, or eat very little. The patient might not even be aware that they are hungry, or that they are not eating enough food. Over time, this can result in malnutrition.
Bulimia is an eating disorder wherein a patient binges, or eats a lot of food, and then purges, or tries to vomit it all out. This is usually done in an attempt to lose weight, or to avoid gaining weight.
This can cause malnutrition because when a person vomits all of the food they ate, their bodies are not able to absorb all of the nutrients properly. If a person with bulimia keeps doing it over and over, then they can suffer from malnutrition.